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Aditya Chatterjee Aditya Chatterjee Monday 04 Mar 2013, 3:13 PM

The Mahindra Quanto is the first subcompact SUV from the Indian utility vehicle manufacturer. It marks the entry level SUV for the company. The Quanto has a 3 cylinder mCR100 1500cc engine with a twin stage turbo charger. The compact sub 4 meter SUV segment was one such market which was left untapped excluding the Premier Rio, which couldn’t create any excitement. Famously called Mini Xylo, the Quanto had every eye on it even before its launch as it was the most anticipated product by Mahindra and Mahindra.

Renault Duster is a compact SUV as well which got in news for re establishing the French manufacturers plan in India. Renault along with compact dimensions also offers an option to choose from in engine units, the mileage friendly 85PS diesel unit and the rev friendly 110PS. Let us pitch both these SUVs and see who wins it all?

Mahindra Quanto Vs Renault Duster Exteriors

The Mahindra Quanto is a compact SUV which fits in the sub 4 meter SUV bracket. The smaller dimensions help in cutting the price and availing the tax benefits. The Quanto borrows heavily from elder brother Xylo which is very evident in its styling. The Renault Duster looks like a very well balanced and proportionate SUV, without any extra over hang. The Duster will definitely not just lure the SUV buyers but will also attract a lot of sedan and premium hatch buyers too as the price point in which it is offered is very lucrative.


Mahindra Quanto Vs Renault Duster 1
Mahindra Quanto Vs Renault Duster 1

The rear end of the vehicle is again as stylish as the front and the side profiles. Generally rear profile of SUVs look to boxy and boring but then that of the Duster will not let you complain at all. It starts with a broad rear windshield and then the well placed tail lamps on the extension of D pillars. Corresponding to the tail lamps are small muscular flares on the tail gate. In the Quanto, it gets the new Mahindra toothed radiator grille which gives it a family look. Raised headlamps with an aggressive line flowing all the way to the hood, give it a very prominent design. The front bumper is rather simple and features minimalistic profiles on it with fog lamps.

Mahindra Quanto Vs Renault Duster Interiors

The Quanto however displays some improvements over the Xylo in terms of the materials used. The fit and finish is sadly the same and has space for tremendous improvement. The Aircon vents on either side come in chrome rings. The buttons and knobs too have been shared from the elder sibling. Plastics and trims on the Quanto are decent; they have been improved but still lack quality finish. The tall central panel sports the micro hybrid switch on the top followed by the music system panel which also features USB and AUX-in connect. The music quality of the speakers is average. It has a 4 speed Air Conditioner which cools the cabin adequately and the absence of a rear Air Conditioning vent is not felt much.

In the Renault Duster, the beige dual tone interiors of the Renault Duster make it feel very roomy inside. The central console has an integrated music system with Bluetooth and USB plug in option. Touch and feel of the buttons are very nice. The Central Lock/Unlock button takes little time as it is a tiny button situated on the left bottom of the console. The display of the entertainment system has been kept very basic and intentionally so as to have a simple approach for all. There are not too many options crowding it which is good.

Mahindra Quanto Vs Renault Duster Performance

The Renault Duster comes in one petrol and two diesel engine options; we were driving the 110 PS diesel engine as that was the most appropriate for climbing the hilly terrains of Munnar and its surrounding areas. It has a Common rail direct injection 4 cylinder 1461cc K9K diesel engine. The K9K diesel engine was also seen on the Logan as well as many present day Renault vehicles.


Mahindra Quanto Vs Renault Duster 2
Mahindra Quanto Vs Renault Duster 2

The Mahindra Quanto compact SUV gets a compact 1.5L, 3 cylinder mCR100 engine which has a twin stage turbo charger. This pint of an engine produces a maximum power output of 100 bhp at 3750 rpm and a torque of 240 Nm at a range of 1600 to 2800 rpm. This engine is equipped with a 5 speed manual transmission. It also comes with Mahindra’s innovation called the Micro Hybrid which effectively kills ignition if it senses the engine is idling for more than 2.5 seconds in Neutral gear. This feature is indeed very helpful and helps keep the fuel consumption in control especially in bumper to bumper traffic.

Mahindra Quanto Vs Renault Duster Conclusion

The Mahindra Quanto is a very smart decision by Mahindra and Mahindra. The company identified the proper segment and has made a very precise product catering to it. The launch timing and the pricing of it were perfect. The very fact that the company got over 10,000 bookings just two months after its launch and also was forced to ramp up the production from 2500 units to 3500 units at its Nasik plant speaks volumes about the Quanto’s success.

With the Duster, Renault has done all the homework and has decided not to repeat the mistakes that it is famous for. They have managed to price it very aggressively due to the amount of localization in it