Mahindra is joining the growing market for short-stop city-friendly delivery vehicles.
The company’s first foray into locally developed panel vans comes in the form of the #XPREZ, a vehicle based on the KUV100 NXT K2+. The vehicle is converted at Mahindra’s Special Fitment Centre in Gauteng.
According to Mahindra, the donor vehicle’s SUV-style and dimensions mean that it is an ideal panel van with the largest rear hatch in the business. It also says that the higher ground clearance gives it a go-anywhere appeal.
The conversion process in Gauteng includes the addition of a flat and highly durable load area in place of a rear bench seat and two cargo nets as standard. The side and rear windows are blocked out to discourage any prying eyes, with additional metal barriers fitted to the inside of these windows.
Mahindra also adds a safety barrier from laser-cut steel mesh between the load area and the two front occupants and a fire extinguisher as standard. The #XPREZ retains the KUV100’s safety features, which include dual front airbags and ABS brakes.
“In recent years, we have seen a rapid growth in online retailing and general delivery services. This has only accelerated during the lockdown, as we have become more comfortable with our new online lives and the option of ordering in,” says Rajesh Gupta, CEO of Mahindra South Africa.
“We have also seen many people start small businesses and side-hustles to replace or supplement their pre-COVID careers, with many of these entrepreneurs looking for a reliable, affordable and spacious delivery vehicle.”
In its standard form, the #XPREZ can load 350 kg of packages, with best-in-class access to the cargo area through the side doors and very wide rear hatch door. Indeed, the #XPREZ’s load bay can swallow 1 350 litres of cargo, making it possible to transport odd-shaped objects as well as standard delivery boxes.
As the #XPREZ shares the genes of the K2+, it features comfort features such as power steering and air conditioning as standard. To this, Mahindra has added a radio and central locking to the #XPREZ.
The #XPREZ is fitted with Mahindra’s 1.2-litre mFalcon petrol engine, which delivers 61 kW and 115 Nm and has a rated fuel consumption of 5.9 litres/100 km in a combined cycle. This model was rated the most affordable vehicle to maintain and repair in the 2019 AA Kinsey Report.
Current competitors include the Kia Picanto Runner and Hyundai Grand i10 Motion Cargo.
The price tag of the Mahindra KUV100 NXT #XPREZ is R174 999.
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