2020 Mahindra Thar Vs Kia Seltos: Which Car Deserves Your Money?

Kia Seltos Vs Mahindra Thar

Since its launch, the 2020 Mahindra Thar has been in news. Be it for the all-new design, engines, number of bookings and now the impressive safety rating by Global NCAP. And then there’s another SUV in the market that has taken the segment by storm. It is the compact SUV from Kia, the Seltos. It has also been in news recently, for the not-so-good safety rating it received at the same crash test. So, it’s time, we take a look at the topic, where should your money go? Before that, let’s answer a very necessary question.

2020 Mahindra Thar vs Kia Seltos | Why the comparison?

2020 Mahindra Thar

Well, it all comes down to numbers game. Currently, there are two variants of Mahindra Thar listed on the website. The AX optional variant for ₹11,90,000 and the LX variant for ₹12,49,000. Talking about the Kia Seltos, it starts from ₹9,89,000 for the HTE variant and goes up to ₹16,39,000 for the GTX+. Do note that these are ex-showroom prices. So, if you have got around ₹15,00,000 budget, you will have both of the choices. Should you go for the compact SUV inspired by the badass in you or should you go for the timeless silhouette redefined? Let’s find out.

First things first, the budget!

2020 Kia Seltos

Now as we are taking into consideration a budget of ₹15,00,000, we will be taking the on-road prices of both the cars in Delhi as on 26-11-2020. We will not be crossing our limits on the budget, whatsoever happens! Mahindra Thar LX variant with a hardtop will come at a fortune of ₹14,83,402. This does not include any accessories or an extended warranty. As for the Kia Seltos, you will get the HTK Plus D variant by spending ₹14,93,839. Again, this price does not include any accessories or an extended warranty.

Now it’s time for the dimension comparison. 

Before we look on to why this comparison is necessary, let’s take a look at the comparison.

2020 Mahindra Thar LX with Hardtop Kia Seltos
Length (mm) 3,985 4,315
Width (mm) 1,855 1800
Height (mm) 1,844 1,600
Wheelbase (mm) 2,450 2,610
Seating Capacity 4 5
Boot space (litres) 100 433

Now, if you have got less space, length-wise, you can go for the Mahindra Thar. And if you have got less space, breadth-wise, Kia Seltos should be your choice. Mahindra Thar surely has a better road presence, no denying in that, although it is totally subjective. Now, if you are going to require boot space, you will have to either put down the rear-row seats or else choose Kia Seltos. But there is more to the story, so keep on reading.

Build and Looks!

2020 Mahindra Thar Ultimate Offroader

Mahindra Thar is a body-on-frame SUV while the Kia Seltos is monocoque. That’s all about the build. Looks are totally subjective. While the Thar oozes out muscularity while keeping in the essence of the timeless silhouette, Kia Seltos reflects a whole new modern design language. Again, looks are subjective, so won’t be commenting more on that, do let us know in the comments section below, which is a better-looking SUV?

2020 Mahindra Thar vs Kia Seltos | Performance Comparison

mStallion 150 TGDi Petrol

So, the variants we are talking about are Mahindra Thar LX with Hardtop and Kia Seltos HTK+ D. So, let’s see what both of the vehicles have under their hoods.

2020 Mahindra Thar LX Kia Seltos HTK+ D
Engine 2.0-litre mStallion 150 TGDi Petrol 1.5 K9K Diesel
Power  150ps @5,000rpm 115ps @4,000rpm
Torque  320Nm @1,500-3,000rpm 250Nm @1,500-2,750rpm
Transmission 6-speed Manual 6-speed Manual
Drive type 4WD FWD

We have a clear winner! You might blame me of comparing a turbo-petrol engine with a diesel engine and that too of different capacities. But why not? You are getting a more powerful engine while spending the same, so why not? And, on the top of that, you get a 4WD configuration. Now that’s the talk we need to have right now. An SUV that can cruise on the roads and also go offroading. Or a compact SUV that can only cruise on roads and will have difficulties in offroading. What will you choose? Wait, there’s more to the comparison, I demand more of your time.

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Comfort and Convenience

Now we all know, how this part is going to be. Kia Seltos hosts a load of features such as a 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment system, Bose premium 8-speaker system with sound mood lighting, ventilated front seats, steering mounted audio control, smart air purifier, 7.0-inch instrument cluster, a rearview camera with guidelines, and whatnot. Do note that these features are for the Kia Seltos HTK+ D.

Multi-colour sound mood lighting | Kia Seltos

On the other hand, Mahindra Thar offers 7-inch touchscreen infotainment, 4-speaker configuration with 2 tweeters mounted on the top, digital instrument cluster, reverse parking sensors and some more basic features. If comfort is all you seek, Mahindra Thar is not a good option when compared to Kia Seltos. But what about off-roading?

Mahindra Thar vs None | Offroading Capabilities

2020 Mahindra Thar

VS NONE! That’s right. Thar has no one in the vicinity when it comes to off-roading capabilities. It can wade through water up to 650mm, has got an approach angle of 42-degrees and the 37-degree departure angle makes it an ultimate off-roading machine. It also has a ground clearance of 226mm. The only thing that Kia Seltos has on the books. It has a ground clearance of 190mm. A true SUV indeed. And don’t forget, it is a 4WD.

2020 Mahindra Thar vs Kia Seltos | Safety Features

2020 Mahindra Thar Global NCAP

Before we list down the features, let’s talk some news. Yesterday, Global NCAP released a report which stated that the Mahindra Thar has scored an impressive 4-star rating. It also scored a 4-star rating for the child occupancy making it the second in-country, only after XUV300. Kia Seltos on the other hand scored a 3-star rating for the adult occupancy while a 2-star rating was rewarded for the child occupancy. Take a look at the reports below:

2020 Mahindra Thar is 4-star! – Global NCAP Crash Test Safety Rating

Kia Seltos Scores 3-Star Rating at the Global NCAP Crash Testing

Now it’s time for a comparison.

2020 Mahindra Thar LX  Kia Seltos
Dual-front Airbags
ABS with EBD
ESP with Rollover Mitigation
Panic Braking Signal
ISOFIX Child Seat Anchors

Now take into consideration the safety ratings or the extra equipment, Mahindra Thar surely has an upper hand.

So, now it’s up to you. What will you go for? Do let us know in the comments section below.