A dreamy morning set amidst the lost dunes
in the desert at Khimsar,Rajasthan. We await the arrival of our ride. The all
new Mahindra Gusto, one of the first indigenous scooters built by the two
wheeler unit of Mahindra & Mahindra, has been generating some hype ever
since the camouflaged versions of the product started testing on the roads.
There has been a great deal of chatter about this new scooter from Mahindra
because of the claimed innovative design and features. Finally the time comes
and we hop on to the refreshing and edgy new Mahindra Gusto.
At the heart of the new Gusto is a powerful
aluminum M-Tech 110cc 4-stroke, air cooled engine which produces 8bhp @ 7500rpm
and churns out 9Nm of torque @ 5500rpm. From the moment you say go and just rev
this peppy little engine the Gusto does not fail to amaze you. It will pull
cleanly from 0-70kmph without even breaking a sweat. The Gusto on the engine
front is a perfect scooter for the average city goer as it does not fail to
please you in terms of performance and pick up. But it does feel out of breath
once it crosses the 70kmph mark. We took the Gusto to 83kmph before breaking
but unlike most scooters the engine did not shudder which goes to show how good
the build quality is. The Gusto will take its sweet time to reach the 83kmph
mark but none the less it will get you there and maintain that speed if you
demand it to. This peppy little 4-stroke has been designed and engineered in
Mahindra’s very own R&D facility in Pune which was set up three years back.
The Gusto is light and zippy even though it has one of the longest wheel bases
in the segment at 1275mm. The Mahindra Gusto also has been built for heavy duty
use and as one of the stipulated parameters of testing we took the scooter over
rugged terrain. Shockingly the Gusto held its own even over rough ground and
through the desert sands.
The new Gusto comes with some of the most
innovative features in the two wheeler segment. Mahindra has once again shocked
the industry with another patented innovation which is added to the Gusto, a
height adjustable seat. The Vx version of the Gusto will get this height
adjustable seat.The height adjustment will adjust the rider’s position between
the 770mm to 735mm range. This is one feature which gives the rider a more
comfortable riding position and options to adjust their seating position
depending on their need. Keeping a unisex clientele in mind Mahindra Two
Wheeler’s new Gusto is definitely an option you would want to consider as it is
convenient to drive for both male and female riders. The 12 inch tubeless tyres
give the scooter a good stance.The ground clearance of the Gusto is 165mm and
it has a very sturdy and balanced ride. Over smooth roads and rugged terrain
the Gusto feels very comfortable with a telescopic air suspension in the front
and hydraulic long stroke suspension in the rear. The Gusto seems to draw its
genes from one of those mighty Mahindra SUVs as it seems to decimate all that
is thrown in its path. Even when you are cornering at around 50-60kmph the
scooter feels very stable and one does not fear to dig deeper. One area where I
would give the Gusto a ten on ten is the braking department. The scooter has
the best stopping distance in the segment and the brakes are very efficient.
Both brakes are 130mm mechanical drum brakes and Mahindra has claimed it would
make a front disc brake variant soon.
One of the areas which was a disappointment
is the styling. The new Gusto may be refreshing and different but it is
certainly not original. Mahindra acquired Kinetic Motors in 2008 and the front
end of the Gusto seems to have drawn a lot of styling cues from Kinetic’s line
up. The scooter definitely has a very bold outlook and does hold a certain
amount of road presence but it is not something which will make your jaw drop.
The Gusto comes with a first in segment daytime running lights (DRLs) and a new
locking mechanism on the seat which will prevent it from falling while you are
filling petrol or accessing the under seat storage area. Another very handy
feature on the Gusto is a first in segment front kick start which allows you to
kick start the vehicle while you are seated on the scooter and you do not need
to get off and perform a kick start like the traditional scooters. Do not
mistake this as the lack of a self-start button. The Gusto has also got a first
of its kind glove box in a scooter which is handy to store your mobile phone
and other pocket sized items. Mahindra comes with the same flip key which comes
on the Centuro and you can easily access the follow me home and find me
functions of the scooter with this handy flip key. The Gusto comes with large
side view mirrors which allow you to easily view the traffic at your rear. Over
all the Gusto seems to be a rugged yet innovative scooter but Mahindra could
have improved the oomph quotient a little more.
The Gusto comes with a price tag of Rs.43,000
(ex-showroom Delhi) which is an introductory price and is filled to the brim
with handy features. The scooter does not disappoint on the performance front
and seems to have drawn the macho genetics of the mighty Mahindra SUVs.
Mahindra has made the scooter as convenient to own and ride as possible and is
definitely a game changer as both men and women can easily ride this with
minimal discomfort. The styling does feel a bit lacking but it does have some
subtle combinations of curvy and edgy looks which is not offered by any
competitor.The Gusto has a fuel tank of 6 litres and can give 63km to the litre
giving it a very impressive range. All this for a price tag of Rs.43,000 is not
a bad bargain but hurry this is just an introductory price. Go for the gutsy
110cc, 4 – Stroke, Air-cooled
8 bhp@ 7500rpm
9 Nm@ 5500rpm
Telescopic air spring/ Long stroke hydraulic
130mm Mechanical Drum
90/ 90-12 Tubeless
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