Here, we compare the 2021 Ford Gurkha and Mahindra Thar in terms of styling, features and equipment, technical specifications, etc.
Force Motors has officially unveiled the 2021 Gurkha in India. The new SUV features plenty of updates and upgrades over the previous (BS4-compliant) model, while still offering the same ruggedness and brilliant off-road capabilities as before. Of course, its biggest (and only) rival in our market would be the extremely popular Mahindra Thar.
Here, we have an on-paper comparison of the all-new Force Gurkha and Mahindra Thar, to see how the two SUVs stack up against each other.
2021 Force Gurkha Vs Mahindra Thar – Exterior styling and dimensions
The 2021 Force Gurkha has seen major revisions to the exterior design. The overall styling continues to be boxy, but it is way more sophisticated now. It gets LED headlights with integrated LED DRLs, a blacked-out front grille (with bold ‘Gurkha’ badge), repositioned taillights, and new bumpers (blacked out, front and rear). The SUV gets thick plastic cladding along the sides, and a snorkel is available as standard.
Mahindra Thar also has a boxy, old-school design with a modern touch. It gets round halogen headlamps, LED DRLs and turn indicators on the front fender, curvy bumpers, flared wheelarches (with thick cladding), and rectangular LED taillights. The Thar is currently available with hard-top roof and soft-top convertible roof options, marking this as a true lifestyle vehicle.
|Dimensions||Force Gurkha||Mahindra Thar|
|Length||4,116 mm||3,985 mm|
|Width||1,812 mm||1,855 mm|
|Height||2,075 mm||1,844 mm|
|Wheelbase||2,400 mm||2,450 mm|
Both SUVs come with tailgate-mounted spare wheels, which give them a macho visual appeal. The Gurkha is longer and taller, but the Thar is wider and has a longer wheelbase. In terms of road presence, both the vehicles fare equally well, and will surely grab a lot of attention wherever they go.
2021 Force Gurkha Vs Mahindra Thar – Interior design and features
The interior of the Gurkha has an extremely utilitarian design, but compared to the older version, the new one is a huge improvement. The SUV is only available in a 4-seat configuration, with captain seats in the front and rear row. The access to rear seats is easy, thanks to the side-hinged tailgate.
Features on offer include a 7-inch touchscreen infotainment system (with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay), power windows, manual AC, TPMS, central locking, dual front airbags, rear parking sensors, cornering lamps, etc. The rear passengers get fixed windows only, which is a little disappointing.
Mahindra Thar has a much better cabin design, offering a more modern feel. However, the rear seats aren’t as good as the Gurkha. Ingress/egress into the back requires people to fold down the front seats, and the space at the back is a bit cramped. Similar to the Gurkha, the rear windows are fixed.
The Thar has a lot more features on offer though, like a 7-inch instrument cluster (with BlueSense App Connectivity), a 3.5-inch MID in the instrument cluster, power windows, roof-mounted speakers, removable doors, automatic climate control, cruise control, dual front airbags, ABS, EBD, ESP with roll-over mitigation, TPMS, etc.
2021 Force Gurkha Vs Mahindra Thar – Powertrain
While Mahindra Thar is available with both petrol and diesel engine option, Force Gurkha only gets a diesel engine. The 2.6-litre turbo-diesel motor of the Gurkha is good for 91 PS and 250 Nm of peak power and torque, respectively, and transmission duties are handled by a 5-speed manual gearbox. The AWD system of the Gurkha gets a transfer case and manually operated mechanical locking differentials (front and rear).
|Technical specifications (diesel version)||Force Gurkha||Mahindra Thar|
|Engine type||Turbocharged, inline-4, diesel||Turbocharged, inline-4, diesel|
|Max. power||91 PS||130 PS|
|Max. torque||250 Nm||300 Nm|
|Transmission||5-speed MT||6-speed MT/6-speed AT|
Mahindra Thar is significantly more powerful; its 2.2L turbo-diesel motor generates 130 PS and 300 Nm, while its 2.0L turbo-petrol mill develops 150 PS and 320 Nm (300 Nm on MT variants). Transmission options include a 6-speed manual and a 6-speed automatic gearbox. It also gets a transfer case and a mechanical locking rear differential.
|Technical specifications (petrol version)||Force Gurkha||Mahindra Thar|
|Engine type||–||Turbocharged, inline-4, petrol|
|Max. power||–||150 PS|
|Max. torque||–||300 Nm (MT)/320 Nm (AT)|
|Transmission||–||6-speed MT/6-speed AT|
The Thar also gets brake locking differentials, hill start assist, hill descent control. On paper, it certainly looks like the Thar has the advantage, but we’d love to take both these SUVs off the road to evaluate their performance.
2021 Force Gurkha Vs Mahindra Thar – Price
Mahindra Thar is currently priced from Rs. 12.78 lakh to Rs. 14.88 lakh for the petrol version, and from Rs. 12.98 lakh to Rs. 15.08 lakh for the diesel version. The price list of Force Gurkha is yet to be revealed, but we expect it to have a starting price of around Rs. 10 lakh. The demand for Mahindra Thar is quite strong in India, and if Force aces the pricing, the Gurkha could find a lot of success as well.
All prices mentioned are ex-showroom, New Delhi