The new Force Gurkha due next year is being developed to meet stricter crash test and emission norms. It is likely to be unveiled at Auto Expo 2020.
The Force Gurkha, a rugged SUV quite popular among off-roaders has been selling in India for quite some time now. The Gurkha has been updated several times over its lifespan with the most recent being the inclusion of several features like ABS, speed warning, a seatbelt reminder and rear parking sensors to comply with the new government norms.
However, in its present generation, the Force Gurkha will be unable to meet the standards of the new crash test norms that will come into effect from October 1, 2019. Force is thus readying a whole new Gurkha for the year 2020.
Force has already begun works on the next-gen Gurkha. The new SUV will come with an all-new body shell that is expected to clear the crash test regulations. The Gurkha is also expected to come with more creature comforts as opposed to the bare bones Gurkha that we get now and that sure is a welcome change.
The Gurkha will also come with an updated 2.2L, turbocharged diesel engine to meet the BS-VI emissions norms coming into effect from April 1, 2020. This engine is actually sourced from Mercedes-Benz and produces about 140 horsepower.
Force is likely to discontinue to 2.5L, diesel engine that currently does duty on the present-gen Gurkha. It produces 85 horsepower but will not be able to meet the stricter emission norms.
Apart from an all-new BS-VI complaint engine and new body shell, the Gurkha is expected to carry over the same underpinnings as we saw in the Gurkha Xtreme. A new multi-link suspension from the Gurkha Xtreme, low range transfer case and several other offroad-goodies will be carried forward as well.
Co-incidentally, Mahindra is also developing an all-new Thar to keep up with new regulations and norms. The Mahindra Thar is the direct rival of the Force Gurkha and like the Gurkha, the Thar to is receiving a new engine and body shell.
The Thar has been caught testing under heavy camouflaging several times already and is expected to be launched at the 2020 Auto Expo.
The new Force Gurkha to is expected to go into production around December 2019 with an unveiling at the Auto Expo 2020 alongside the Thar.