Mahindra Pik Up

Scorpio-N SUV forecasts a Mahindra Pik Up revolution


Judging by Mahindra’s all-new Scorpio-N sport ute quantum leap forward, the Indian carmaker appears set to turn the South African bakkie market on its head, when it takes its obvious next step.

See, the Mahindra Scorpio and the company’s exceptional value for money Pik Up range of bakkies were always inextricably coupled at the tote. They’re basically the same vehicle under the skin. So, when you read Scorpio, its basically a Pik Up with a boot. Same goes for the Pik Up. It’s just a Scorpio with a bak.

Now the Mahindra Pik Up has always been hugely popular in South Africa. An extreme bargain, it lacks for nothing. Bar perhaps looks. And some of its traditional rivals’ cabin chic. Pik Up was good enough to lift Auto’s Best Bakkie award a year or two back. Even in its good old plasticky 1990s current specification, it remains every bit the Best Bakkie it was.

Mahindra Pik Up

Is Pik Up the next big bakkie thing in SA?

Now, judging by that new Scorpio-N SUV, we predict that King Hilux’s biggest pick-up truck threat won’t come from another big brand bakkie (pardon the drum roll!) No, if Scorpio-N is the benchmark, it’s rather the next Mahindra Pik Up that will very soon break the South African bakkie bank.

The Scorpio-N SUV is a revelation. All new from the ground up, Mahindra promises that it takes the brand to new heights in capabilities, tech, sophistication, dynamics, quietness, looks, performance, and safety. To be honest, we were blown away by just how quantum a leap it is. It is every bit the game changer the Indian carmaker promises it to be.

Sure, its 129 kW 400 Nm mHawk turbodiesel may be a little off some rivals, but Scorpio-N does the job fine. The SUV comes with a 6-speed automatic in the choice of 4×2 and 4X4. The bakkies will likely get a manual option. Also expect electronic shift-on-the-fly in 4×4 bakkies, along with 4XPlor intelligent terrain management and three drive modes too.

The next Pik Up will also share the Scorpio N’s latest third-generation generation body-on-frame platform, and frequency dependent damping, but it remains to be seen if it also gets penta-link watts link rear suspension. The SUV’s four wheel disc brakes would be another major Pik Up attraction. The top bakkies would also be 6 airbag 5-star GNCAP crash test safe.


Expect new Mahindra to be sophisticated, luxurious

While its evolutionary design is a giant leap in itself, it still fails to convey just how significant leap forward the new Scorpio-N really is. Perhaps most significantly, the Scorpio-N’s cabin is now as good as anything in the bakkie market. And we’d expect it to carry straight over to the Pik Up too.

A premium crafted, sophisticated, comfortable, and luxurious space, it looks great and is neatly finished. Boasting command seating up front, it bristles with tech too. Auto and Car Play 20.32 cm touchscreen infotainment and Sony 3D Immersive Sound makes for an intelligent and intuitive driving experience.

The next Mahindra Pik Up range will continue through the various steps of single and double cabs. It will also come in a wide variety of specification spreading from workhorses all the way up executive top end models not too different in spec to the flagship SUV. And we’d expect Mahindra to soon add a few Karoo and special editions, too.

It is not often that we can so precisely predict a new model as we can the next Mahindra Pik Up. But judging by its SUV twin, should pricing remain more or less consistent, and the new  Pik Up comes in as close as its Scorpio-N SUV sibling as we expect it to, there’s little doubt that Mahindra has a winner on its hands in its next Pik Up bakkie. – Michele Lupini

Sketches: Michele Lupini

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