One of the largest manufacturers of the country, Mahindra & Mahindra, after tasting success in the SUV segment for more than five decades, entered into sedan segment in 2007 when it joined hands with French car maker, Renault. The breakup of this partnership and the arrival of Mahindra Verito is an old story now. Few months ago, the rumor about launch of a hatchback version of the classy sedan, Verito gained lot of attention in Indian automobile sector for two reasons. One was the fact that one of the oldest and biggest automobile company of India was geared to expand into the most competitive segment of the market which is the hatchbacks. The second was the curiosity on the design of this new car since Logan and Verito had seen some success in India. The car is finally launched by Mahindra and it is pitted against Swift, i20, Polo, Punto and other cars who are priced slightly above the entry-level small cars.
Mahindra Verito Vibe is available only with diesel engine option and its features are spread across three trim levels namely D2, D4 and D6.
Mahindra Verito Vibe carries one of the most critically acclaimed engines in the automobile world, the K9K, which is jointly developed by Renault and Nissan. The same engine has been used in Logan and currently available Verito sedan car. The 1.5L dCi diesel engine of the Verito Vibe hatchback is capable of developing high power and has tremendous torque characteristics. The maximum power developed in this 1461 cc engine is 64.1 bhp @ 4000 rpm. The torque curve of this engine stands high on the graph with maximum torque output of 160 Nm @ 2000 rpm. The car drives superbly in the mid-range and high-range speeds with no shortage of power throughout the drive.
Mahindra Verito Vibe, clearly aware of sporty drive qualities and comfort level offered in its competition, has worked on its suspensions to surpass other models. The suspensions used in this small car are McPherson type with Wishbone link for front and H-Section torsion beam with programmed deflection coil spring at rear.
Mahindra Verito Vibe has taken most of its design aspects from the Verito sedan, giving it a dignified face and has the chrome trimmed vertically slat grille carrying the Mahindra logo. The black rails on roof and side body mouldings give the vehicle a distinctive look from other hatchbacks. The rear however is more towards the unpleasing side, having large C-pillars which are unusual for a small car. The tail lamps run across the length of these pillars to meet the roof. The edge of the boot lid too has a boxy finish which might feel disturbing to few when the car is viewed from rear. To finish off, the tail gate gets chrome garnish with Mahindra logo which nullifies other odds to some extent.
Mahindra has made use of good quality materials and has given a lot of room in the cabin of Verito Vibe to align the car with its competition. The dashboard is decently finished and the steering wheel gives a sporty feel to the driver. The plush fabric material used for the upholstery give a wonderful feel to the passengers while travelling. Manual AC and 2 DIN audio system with four speakers come as other features in this car and all the control buttons for these equipment have great ergonomic positions which gladdens passengers at every touch.
Safety, being one of the primary concerns for most of the automobiles of today, has gained importance in this first hatchback of Mahindra. The Verito Vibe carries basic safety equipment like collapsible steering column, anti-theft engine immobiliser and halogen headlamps in all variants while ABS with EBD and driver airbag are seen only in high-end models.