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Mahindra XUV500 SUV goes on sale

It's built on the Indian manufacturer's first 'global' platform and will be priced from $29,990 for the W8 front drive version and $32,990 for the all wheel drive.

XUV500 benefits from extensive product validation and testing in Europe, Australia, South Africa and India. It has a four star crash rating. Both versions run a four-cylinder, 2.2-litre turbo diesel engine good for 103kW/330Nm output the latter from a low 1600rpm.

XUV500 has a towing capability of 750kg for an un-braked trailer and 2500kg braked. Transmission is a six-speed manual, with a low ratio transfer box for the all-wheel drive model. The all-wheel drive system is on-demand, automatically switching from two to four-wheel drive.

The vehicle is a spacious seven-seater with a monocoque chassis featuring up-to-date mechanical specification and a high level of standard equipment. Suspension is independent on all four-wheels.

Steering is rack-and pinion with a turning circle of 11.2m. Wheels are 17 inch alloys while driver aids include automatic hill descent and hill hold, cruise control, front and rear park assist, light-sensing headlamps and rain-sensing wipers.

Safety features include stability control, rollover mitigating sensor, airbags and crumple zones in the safety cell body. The xenon headlights and tyre pressure monitoring systems are handy additions. Front fog lamps are standard on all three models.

The interior offers a high level of standard equipment - dual-zone climate control, power windows and remote central locking. Infotainment includes a 15cm touch screen with a navigation system as well as MP3, USB, Bluetooth and iPod connectivity. The XUV500 is built at Mahindra's state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Chakan, near the city of Pune, in India.