Mahindra Scorpio Special Edition – Click above for high resolution picture gallery

Car tested: 2010 Mahindra Scorpio VLX Special Edition

Price OTR Mumbai: 12,26,445/-

The Mahindra Scorpio has been on the market since almost a decade and to keep it in sync with the competition Mahindra has constantly upgraded the Scorpio to meet the ever changing trends in the auto industry. The latest offering comes in the form of the Scorpio Special Edition, which was recently launched at the Auto Expo 2010. The Mahindra Scorpio Special Edition offers premium fabrics, chrome finished alloys, leather wrapped dashboard and a host of features. The Mahindra Scorpio Special edition is going to be limited to only 1000 vehicles, but what exactly makes it special?? We find out.

Exteriors – The Mahindra Scorpio was built for the global market and that’s evident. A characteristic tall stance stamps some authority while its all around sporty looks makes it look like a SUV. The front sports a body coloured grill which houses an inverted chrome U which displays the Mahindra logo and on either side clear lens headlamps provide good lighting at night. The fog lights are placed on the front bumper and the front bumper design adds to the sporty looks of the Scorpio. The bonnet houses a scoop which emphasizes the Scorpios SUV status and at the same time works as an air intake for the engine.

From the side the Mahindra Scorpio looks pretty much the same as it used to besides a few cosmetic changes. The sides exhibit a body coloured moulding type of a design with the word SCORPIO engraved on the lower portion of the rear door and some graphics on the front door. Chrome finished alloy wheels add to the show of the Mahindra Scorpio and the special edition also provides for a footrest with two small lights which provide a wee bit of lighting at night.

The Scorpio has a rather flat rear with adequately sized stop lamps and indicators on either side which look stylish. One cant help but notice MICRO HYBRID on the rear right side, we will get to that in a while. The rear step is integrated within the bumper, enhancing the looks of the rear as compared to the earlier versions.

Interiors – Step inside the Mahindra Scorpio and the feeling is no less than a king sitting on his throne. The seating is high and the view is commanding. All around visibility is good owing to its large sized mirrors. Two tone Beige interiors look good and the wooden finish central console stands out and gives a rich feel to the Mahindra Scorpio. Leather seats are bonus on the looks. The steering is wrapped with leather and is comfortable to hold, meanwhile the audio system and the gear lever have been picked up straight from the Scorpios younger sibling, the Xylo.

Surprisingly, front cabin light is missing, which is quite strange. The central console houses the audio system, the air conditioner controls and buttons for automatic wipers, automatic headlamps, fuel lid opener, 12V socket and the start/stop microhybrid button. Airbags are provided for the front 2 passenger and ABS is also standard on this model.

Leg room is adequate and even the rear seats (second row) is comfortable with the air vents provide in the center for effective and efficient cooling. The last row of seats face each other and are extremely uncomfortable if one is traveling over a long distance. Since the seats face each other, legroom is limited and ones legs tend to brush against those sitting on the opposite side. In-spite of this the Mahindra Scorpio comfortably seats five people in the first two rows and the last rows seats can be folded for decent boot space and if one still craves for more the second row seats can be folded too thereby giving the Scorpio enough space to fit a baby elephant.

The Scorpio also boasts of a DVD player and high end speakers. The audio quality is decent and the audio system supports USB and Aux.

The power windows switch have been given between the front passenger seats which makes it a little difficult to operate with the drivers side hand rest coming in the way. All around the interiors are good and beige adds a rich feel to them. The plastic quality is, however, is not great and could have been way better.

Built Quality – The Scorpio is a tough vehicle and built quality is good enough for the job. As you would expect from an off roader, the Scorpio is built to take on all types of terrain. Few panel gaps were visible and as mentioned before the plastic quality could have been better but apart from that there is nothing which compromises on the quality. Over our long period of testing, we did not encounter any rattles or squeaks from any part of the car.

On the Move – The Scorpio has been through a series of engines and with each upgrade the Scorpio has become a much more refined vehicle. The Scorpio Special edition is powered by the revolutionary 2.2 liter mHawk engine which pumps out 120 bhp of power. The new 2.2 litre turbocharged aluminum CDRe mHawk engine is lighter than the previous 2.6 CRDe and improves the driving dynamics and contribute to the added refinement of the car. The 2.2 mHawk engine also returns better fuel efficiency than before. During our test the Scorpio gave us an average of 8.9 kmpl which is quite good as the car was pushed very hard and during regular use one can expect about 10 kmpl which is very good for a vehicle of this size.

The Scorpio is the first vehicle of its kind which boasts of Micro Hybrid technology. Contrary to what the name seems to suggest, the Scorpio is not a hybrid vehicle as such. Micro hybrid technology is not used to drive the vehicle but only helps to start/stop the vehicle, provided that the gear is in neutral and the clutch is fully pressed, that too only if the engine has reached the optimum operating temperature and the battery has adequate charge. So basically when you are idling at a signal, you can use this (provided all the above parameters are met) and contribute to the environment. The disadvantage of this system is that the when the engine turns off, so does the Ac, which can be quite a pain. The blower works all the while but is not of much use if you are getting cooked in the heat. The company claims that this saves about 5 percent of fuel, even though it may seem to be a small amount, every bit of contribution helps.

Turning on the ignition a  message plays which welcomes us to the Scorpio and reminds us that we must drive it carefully as is it is a powerful vehicle and shortly followed by a message which reminds us to wear our seat belts for a safe drive. The 2.2 mHawk engine make some noise on the outside but inside the cabin the sound levels are well damped.

Slot the car in first gear and immediately one senses the brutal power of the engine. The gear shift is similar to that of the Xylo with typical long throws of the lever which is slightly notchy at times, but it only takes a short while to get used to it. Acceleration is good and car accelerated comfortably even when fully loaded. The steering is extremely light and responsive and audio controls on steering wheel add to the list of features. Cruise control is provided but there is hardly any road in Mumbai where it can be comfortably used.

The Scorpio’s lighting is very good. The clear lens headlamps provide more than enough light at night which is of vital use when one is off roading. The Scorpio comes with a reverse guide system which is integrated with the inside rear view mirror and is very handy as its gets a little difficult to spot objects while reversing. We tested this system extensively and never did it prove wrong.

Ride, Handling and Braking – The Scorpio Special Edition come with Bridgestone Dueler all terrain tyres which are decently good on most terrains. The Scorpio rides comfortably on these tyres and ride can be classified as good. The Scorpio has evolved in its handling over the years and that’s mainly attributed to its 2.2 mHAWK engine which, as mentioned earlier,  improves the overall refinement of the vehicle. The Scorpio handles well and if you throw it into a corner it does not “Swing” from side to side, a characteristic very typical of its younger sibling, the Xylo. With a typical tall stature and heavy weight, you don’t expect the Scorpio to handle like a Punto! Bodyroll is bound to be there but its well within limits and the Scorpios handling is pretty good in the segment. Ride is a bit harsh when taking high speed bumps.

Braking is decent again with the Bridgestone tyres doing a decent job. Although the Bridgestones are not exactly ideal for regular tarmac running but are a good compromise between off road and on road running. The tyres are also a bit noisy at high speeds.

Performance – The Scorpio Special Edition is powered by the 2.2 liter mHAWK engine which is very responsive and as you shift through the gears, the car accelerates effortlessly. The Scorpio easily touches 120 without running out of breath. Off roading capability is extremely good too, the Scorpio may not be considered to be a full on off roader but take it unto a rough terrain and the Scorpio is up for the challenge. We took it to a stony and uphill area and the Scorpio easily muscled it out without with any issues.

Conclusion – The Scorpio Special Edition is an overall package. Loaded with gadgetry like, cruise control, audio controls on steering wheel, automatic wipers, automatic headlamps etc, it offers good value for money at the same time does well in all types of terrain. Sporty Muscular looks along with a powerful engine make it one of the best in the segment. Leather finished interiors and European styling give it an international feel. With only 1000 vehicles on the road, it will certainly make u feel Special in its own way.

What’s Cool

  • Powerful engine
  • Off roading capability
  • Auto Wipers and auto headlamps
  • Sporty looks

What’s Not So Cool

  • Slightly dated design
  • Long throws of the gear lever
  • Plastic quality

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Mahindra Scorpio Specifications

  • Engine: 2179cc, Turbocharged, Intercooled, mhawk CRDe
  • Power: 120 BHP @ 4000 RPM
  • Torque: 290 Nm @ 1800-2800 RPM
  • Transmission: 5 speed manual
  • Top Speed: 170 km/hr
  • 0-100 km/hr: 14 seconds (est)
  • Fuel Consumption: 09-10 km/l (City), 11-12 km/l (highway)
  • Fuel Type: Diesel
  • Suspension: Independent, Coil Spring, Anti Roll Bar (Front), Multilink, Coil Spring (Rear)
  • Tires: 235/70/16 Tubeless Radials
  • Brakes: Disc and caliper type, Twinpot and Tandem Booster (Front), Drums (Rear), ABS, EBD
  • Safety: ABS, EBD, Dual SRS Front Airbags, Immobilizer, Tyre Pressure Monitoring System

Mahindra Scorpio Dimensions

  • Overall length x width x height: 4430 mm X 1817 mm X 1975 mm
  • Wheelbase: 2680 mm
  • Ground clearance: 180 mm
  • Boot Volume: 460 liters
  • Fuel Tank Capacity: 60 liters
  • Kerb Weight: 1910 kgs