Mahindra SUVs are the new stylish in and out of towns of many parts of the world, including Africa. To
vouch for its newly found fame and good reputatioin, Mahindra’s XUV300 was recently declared the
safest car in Africa as per the testing by the GNCAP – Global New Car Assessment Programme.
The UK-registered organisation aims to promote the sale of safer cars in developing markets by
empowering consumers with objective information about the safety of vehicles. For its top mark in safety,
sold more than 2,000 units in South Africa alone in 2022.
The Indian automaker is rightfully in celebratory mood, as Rajesh Gupta, CEO of Mahindra South Africa,
enthused: “Our sales success in 2022 and our title as South Africa’s fastest-growing vehicle brand can
be attributed to our entire network, including our assembly plant in Durban that had to make do with
component shortages and our dealers who supported customers on our waiting list.”
So, is the XUV really the real deal? Let’s explore its attributes via its flagship W8 trim.
Safety notwithstanding, the looks in a car mean a lot and the XUV300 has taken to the fast lane on that
department. Talking fast, that’s the central appearance of fhe XUV 300, via the Cheetah face-inspired L-
shaped LED front lights, with the headlamps that flow into the front fog lamps. The sexy look of the
XUV300, boosted by new 16-inch diamond-cut alloy wheels, is a downrighth winner. Other design
highlights include the floating-effect roof, rear spoiler, black cladding and faux skid plates in the front and
rear and 3D-effect LED taillights. The XUV300 has an easygoing and fun demeanour and fits right in for
all occasions, including being a smart Mom’s taxi.
The slicker black has replaced the old, dull white interior of the previous Mahindra XUV models. The
central touchscreen has been upsized a little bit, delivering a bigger service though onboard sat-nav as
well as wireless smartphone mirroring, compatible with both Android devices and Apple iPhone. Once
connected, you can ask the Google Assistant or Siri to read out your Whatsapp Messages. Now that’s a
wow factor allowing communication on the go, and helping with safety requirement. The sound quality is
also quite good. There are two USB connection points for front passengers, but rear passengers have to
Space and comfort
The XUV looks compact but the second row is remarkably spacious, and wide enough to seat three adult
passengers side-by-side, with sufficient legroom and a three-point safety belt for every passenger who
has his/her behind on the supportive leatherette seats.
Comfort is enhanced by thick carpets and tinted windows for added privacy and safety.
The XUV 300 is good also for the adventurous type, thanks to the car’s pliant suspension that eats up
road of different conditions, even though is not a 4×4 but a front-wheel-drive.
Performance and safety
The 1.5-litre turbodiesel, giving out 86kW and 300 Nm power and torque numbers, is rather small
engine given the SUV size. Howver, there are no headaches at all if you are not speed freak. Overall, the
ride with the 6-speed manual transmission is smooth, efficient and quiet.
The XUV300 W8 trim has seven airbags in total, while other models have two. It also boasts safer
turns, clean breaks to stop the car even in emergencies and effortless climbs, thanks to brake control
from the ABS breaks and hill-hold assist. All XUV300 models are equipped with ISOFIX child seat
anchorage points, and speed-sensitive door locks.
Mahindra XUV300 1.5TD W8 sells for the R336 999 as compared to peers which do not even beat its