Force Motors’ Gurkha 5-door off road SUV spied in India

Mahindra is putting together a 5-door long wheelbase version of the popular Thar off-roader. While the Thar 5-door is still at least a year away, the competition has already manifested itself. Force Motors – it seems – will beat Mahindra to launch, with a five-door version of the Gurkha SUV. Spyshots of the Gurkha 5-door have surfaced and the vehicle appears to be close to production trim.

Force Gurkha 5-door spied on: New variant to take over long-wheelbase Mahindra Thar

Images Courtesy of Motorbeam

The Gurkha Long Wheelbase will get jump seats in the trunk, which should give it the capacity to carry 6-7 passengers, depending on the middle seat. The short-wheelbase Gurkha gets captain’s seats in the middle row. If Force Motors decides to stick with captain’s seats, the long-wheelbase SUV variant seats 6, and if a bench seat replaces the captain’s seats in the middle, the capacity can go up to 7 people.

The Gurkha 5-door under test had 18-inch alloy wheels with diamond-cut wheels and 255/65 tires. The 255/65 tire setup is one size larger than the 245 section tires on the 3-door model. Other specifications remain unclear for now. We expect the mechanics and most features to remain unchanged on the longer wheelbase version of the Gurkha.

Force Gurkha 5-door spied on: New variant to take over long-wheelbase Mahindra Thar

The proven 2.6 liter 4-cylinder turbo diesel engine will also power the new version. However, the outputs are likely to be revised upwards, given the extra weight and payload of the long-wheelbase Gurkha. On the 3-door Gurkha, this engine makes 91 Bhp-250 Nm, and it comes standard with a 5-speed manual gearbox. The same engine is tuned to produce 115 hp-350 Nm on the Force Traveler bus. A similar state of tone is likely on the 5-door Gurkha.

Force Gurkha 5-door spied on: New variant to take over long-wheelbase Mahindra Thar

Most Gurkha buyers complain that the vehicle feels underpowered, and a stronger engine tuning could make the SUV a lot livelier. The suspension arrangement with coil springs on all four wheels can be carried over to the 5-door Gurkha. The Gurkha is known for its driving qualities – an important area where it outperforms the Mahindra Thar – and expects this advantage to carry over to the five-door version as well.

Force Gurkha 5-door spied on: New variant to take over long-wheelbase Mahindra Thar

A four-wheel drive transfer case with 4 low and 4 high modes is offered. In the previous generation Gurkha, the longer wheelbase model was available in both rear-wheel drive and all-wheel drive. It remains to be seen if Force Motors takes the same approach with the BS6 version of the 5-door Gurkha. The new SUV is aimed at buyers who want a tough, expedition-ready vehicle with a good ride quality and a strong diesel engine.

The 5-door Gurkha could hit the market at the end of this year or early next year. There is as yet no direct competition for the Giurkha 5-door. Things will change once the long-wheelbase 5-door version of the Mahindra Thar arrives. However, the 5-door Thar, which is based on the Scorpio-N platform, will not be launched until the end of 2023.

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