Mahindra Scorpio vs Tata Hexa
- Published On: 10 April 2018
- 7 min read
We put the Tata Hexa up against the new Mahindra Scorpio to see how it compares.
The Scorpio has been around for quite some time now and in its lifetime has gained a reputation for being tough. Mahindra has continuously made changes to keep the SUV relevant and the latest change has brought in a new S11 model that is more powerful and equipped with a new gearbox. The car also features minor changes on the outside like a reworked bumper and a new front grille.
This S11 trim model is priced at Rs 14.78 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi) and as a result it sits very close to a segment above its own. A segment which consists of the Tata Hexa, it is loaded with tech, has seven seats and costs 1.2 lakh more.
On the inside
The new Scorpio gets small changes on the inside, like a faux-leather material on the seats, gear lever and steering wheel. However, the dash and other materials remain unchanged but it does come with piano-black accents. The buttons in this do feel a bit outdated but the chrome bits on the climate control does add some flair. The view out is nice as well even at the front seats lowest setting. The seats are large and offer nice levels of support but not as well as the ones on the Hexa.
The rear seats on the Scorpio do a good job as well; there is enough room in all directions. Three passengers can use the rear seat comfortably. The Mahindra also features two seats in the last row, called the ‘jump seats’ they are extrememly uncomfortable on long journeys and also lack seat belts. With these seats folded up, there is a decent 820 litres of space available.
The Tata when launched shook the market and this was largely owing to its interior. It is really nice and that’s a huge deal since Tata wasn’t known to make the best interiors. The soft textured dashboard feels nice and has a nice mix of stitching and piano black accents. The touchscreen on the car is small but the buttons are nice to use. Furthermore, the seats and door panels feel nice and the top-spec model gets good quality materials. The seats on the car are large and cushioned well providing a snug feel. The Hexa has good interior room with more area in almost every aspect than the Scorpio. The backrest that is cumbersome to adjust does manage to recline enough more additional comfort. The third row in the Hexa is a squeeze but provides enough space for children. With those seats folded up it offers 671 litres of boot space.
Safety and features
The Scorpio in its top-spec trim comes with a large amount of features like navigation, cruise control, rain-sensing wipers and a tyre-pressure gauge. It also features a reverse parking camera with park assist. Safety equipment includes dual airbags and ABS. Coming to the Tata, which is known for its feature list, comes with touchscreen, cruise control, reverse parking camera and auto headlamps. It also trumps the Mahindra in terms of safety, it gets six airbags, ABS, traction control, EBD and hill hold and descent assists.
How do they drive?
The Scorpio’s 140hp diesel motor and its refinement levels are really good. Not only does the engine sound nicer, the cabin is well insulated as well. The new Scorpio also manages to be more responsive, despite being equipped with a larger turbo. Power delivery is strong and one gets good delivery from 1500rpm to 4500rpm. This big SUV also manages to hit 100kph in a quick 10.8sec.
The new six-speed transmission works well and shifts are effortless. The same cannot be said about the reverse gear. The new sixth cog is a nice addition; it considerably improves the SUV’s highway characteristics. On the other hand, the Mahindra also has a strong bottom-end with a good punch. This makes the SUV extremely driveable in city conditions. The Scorpio also managed to record better acceleration times within gears, making it faster overall. Further enhancing this drivability is the light clutch and steering. However, the Scorpio doesn’t handle corners the best and rolls around considerably. The brakes, however, is where the Mahindra lacks. It doesn’t have the progressive feel it needs and fells unstable under hard braking.
Powering the Hexa is a 2.2 litre motor that makes 156hp and 400Nm of torque. This engine is pretty silent and the vibrations are well-managed. However, once you get going, you begin to feel the sluggish nature of the motor. The turbo takes a lot of time to spool up. The Hexa features four driving modes and even in the sportiest mode it takes 14.21sec to reach 100kph. The six-speed gearbox isn’t as smooth as the unit on the Scorpio. The clutch is snaps which results to jerky gearshifts. However, the ride quality is very good considering the large 19-inch wheels it rides on. Broken roads and potholes are taken care of easily, large bumps result to a thud like sound. The Hexa handles the corners better than the Scorpio and the heavy steering weighs up even more aiding confidence.
Which one is the better buy?
The additional power, sixth speed and small updates have made the Scorpio a significantly nicer SUV. The car is also nicer to drive and the performance is strong so is the fuel economy. But, power and performance is not where the car was lacking. It needed better comfort and handling and this aspect, the Mahindra has improved a lot.
The Scorpio is not a direct rival to the Hexa, but they don’t fall too far away from each other in terms of pricing. The Tata provides most things one would look for in an SUV. It’s roomy, comfortable and has good performance. It also benefits from a large list of features and equipment. This makes it the better buy.