“Thunderbolt” Mahindra XUV5OO Detailed Review (5 Years Report)

Thread Starter #1
Oct 15, 2011
Some Village
“Thunderbolt” Mahindra XUV5OO Detailed Review (5 Years Report)

“Thunderbolt” XUV 500 Detailed Ownership Review (Decals, Audio, LED, Mods++)

Hello Friends,

Here I would like to present you the detailed , specific Review and Buying experience of my Mahindra XUV 5OO. As I see that there have been many well written reviews for the same, I would like to focus on certain Perks and Specialties that I felt are missing from mass reviews along with a short overlook at everything. If you feel that something was omitted, please drop me a line and I'll try by best to add it up. Questions are welcome. The post will be updated periodically about the Upgrades/Mods/Servicing. However the Tours/Runs/FE will be posted loosely among the thread to avert cluttering up the main review.

So ya with me? Lets Roll!!!

A trip to the past (Buying History)-

Launched somewhere late '11, The beast was Unleashed.

And man! Was I hooked!. It had everything i wanted. It was my dream SUV!!

Yeah I am talking about the XUV 500.

However, Dad said NO! and hence started a long, Painful wait period stretching about 2 years. We always wanted a feature rich SUV since 4~5 years, Somehow I managed to convince that we need a good SUV for our family this year.

So before i emptied my wallets, I came to you friends (Forums)for a honest opinion and some warnings with respect to how to buy , what to look, what to expect from dealer etc, Thanks for the same.

I did Notice that some niggles have been reported, However, XUV is still better when you read about other car's niggles. Even the mighty Fortuner is plagued by the brake issue (I own one).

Discussion thread-



Since 2 years, The market had changed and many new products have come to market. Here was my method of ruling out the competition,

Safari Storme- had 2 Safaris already, stretching over 13 years. Very few equipment. Muted looks (especially Storme treatment). My favorite vehicle but simply bored of it now.

Innova- No Taxi please! No looks. Expensive Toyota parts.

Duster- Too small

Captiva- No last row AC? No can do.

Aria- Fine product and friendly Tata service (yeah you read right) But i can't get off that 'Soccer mom' image it seems to have. Muted looks. Electronics issues. Looks a Mix of Tata Marina + Innova. Underpowered engine. Very bulky to maneuver in city.

Scorpio- Old product and cramped seats. Just a few lakhs saving from XUV.

Force one- NO ABS??! Cancel.

XYLO- Heavy body sway and scary when overtaking. Good Space but no Looks. Again, an MUV image. Poor performance. Uncomfortable driver seating for tall people. Front Windshield felt too small and restrictive.

I also looked for Ssangyong tourismo 2014 which was just launched in Korea. seems better ,but there is no word on release date and pricing. Had a thought about waiting a year but my conscience said “ Buy off something before Dad's mood changes”

TD Experience-

We reached the showroom (Satpuda motors, Jalgaon) in Noon and asked for a TD of the said vehicle. We were informed that the TD Vehicle was out and would have to wait for a few minutes. The treatment was not as warm or exciting and i was badly bursting in sweat. I felt i had landed into some furnace after stepping down my Fortuner (That's what i drove to the place) and the Sales guy said that due to power problems AC is not working. Actually I saw there was no AC installed in the first place. There were no refreshments served or anything.

Meanwhile there was a XYLO standing besides and we thought why not check it out for the time being? The other sales guy was better and showed us some features. I climbed into Third row, and heavens! I could actually sit there (I can't sit in Fortuner 3rd row). I think Xylo has one of the best third row among Indian vehicles. We took it out for a test drive and the Engine was lousy and too much body roll. The AC was out of order (Pity me) so again more sweat. However the ride was very silent and enjoyable. I feel XYLO is really and very much VFM car. Seriously consider this boy when you're looking for an comfortable MUV.

Now after coming back, The STAR had arrived. Experiences with XUV have been distributed and merged into this thread.
After watching some 10 odd videos on You tube (owner and review alike), half dozen threads on TAI and Team BHP, TD testing,
Heart said GO FOR IT!

Buying Experience-

Now I had come to take delivery (11 AM). welcome was normal. I've seen owners thread photos being pampered with gifts,chocolate, balloons etc, nothing here. Got really bored sitting here. The vehicle was not ready and they had sent someone to bring it from Warehouse. Next they said that vehicle is really dusty and is being washed. PDI (if at all) was done away from me. Got the vehicle finally. (2pm)

Went to RTO and got vehicle inspected, however documents and number will be given Later :-(:-(

Got reverse Cam fitted. had to splice the rear tail lamp wiring for the same. We need to 'activate' the Cam from Laptop! wow.! Pictures for the install have been provided later in this review. Went hunting for a good amp after lunch. Details are in the audio section. Dealer were also forcing a lot about some “Coating” costing 8k and “Flooring” Costing 4k but I skipped the same.

This dealer Can be termed 'miser' at best. there's nothing wrong, but there's no 'grand and special' feeling that XUV 500 owners have mentioned.

There was no fuel given. filled full 70.2 liters. :-(

There were no gifts, or nor a simple ribbon that's on new cars. :'(

However, they arranged a Pandit and Garland later in evening. Paid 200 to Pandit as 'Dakshina'

Yeah yeah I know you are holding your breath for the pic. Don't worry There's a truckload of 'em!-
Front shot-


Special Ceremony-
Seeing my low face and Dissatisfaction about the Delivery ceremony, Women of the house made a special ceremony. My Sister and Wife prepared new Garland, Balloon and a Exquisite Bouquet for the same. There were Ribbons, Chocolates, Gifts Oh My!

Everyone joined in and had a Pooja + temple visit.

I'll let the pictures talk-







Take That Mr. Dealer!!!

LED DRL and headlight Pics- (Guide later on)



Roof Rack And Carpeting Update-


5000 KM service Update-


20,000KM Service Update-

Dual woofer Underseat Setup COMPLETE! (with guide)

DIY Dual woofer setup (Hidden and Underseat)

LED Headlights-

DIY LED Car Grille Glow Lights
DIY LED Car Grille Glow Lights

DIY LED DRLs and LED High beam assist-

Clutch Failure 500KM away from home (32k Kms on ODO)

Mud Flap DIY- (Solves Mud / Cowdung spray problem)


Lowbeam Projector Mechanical Failure @ 40k Kms-

All out HID Upgrade (4300K)-

50K Kms service Detailed update-

3 Years detailed Report & Travelogue+pics


Power Window Failure @ 58k Kms


60K Service & Tyre Upgrade, AC (Warranty Repair)

Engine Check Light & Turbo Blown at 60k Kms-

4th year and 65k Kms Service report. FE is only 9~10 KMPL ISSUE UNSLOVED-

Off-Roading with Cheetah!

70k Service-

84k Service-
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Thread Starter #2
Oct 15, 2011
Some Village
Re: “Thunderbolt” XUV 5OO Detailed Review (Decals, Audio, LED, Mods++)

General Overview-

Engine and Drivetrain-
Lets start with the Motor, Shall we? In a word, This is a gem. It's very well mated to the 6 speed gearbox and is fun to drive. But its better to go lazy and enjoy a silent purr rather than Huff and Puff show with this one. It gets noisy at high RPMs. For those looking to push and bully others, Stick to 5'th gear for energetic Driving. On accelerator and Clutch foot off, The engine very enthusiastically pulls in first 3 gears. It stays at 29Km/h on 3rd gear which is nice for city stop and go. There's a very SWEET sounding 1200-2000 RPM turbo whistle.

However, Not all is good and engine has a clipping problem in lower speeds. Make a slight mistake (or not) when releasing the clutch and engine Shuts down with a loud THUD. This is disorienting and Irritating. I wish some solution comes out for the same. Does it have to do anything with front wheel drive and Transverse Engine? My Tata Marina used to do this a lot.

NVH, Steering-
First I would like to talk about noise insulation- its first class! The Engine is so silent that sometimes we hear other car engine more than ours. The Horns, Clutter, Zooms and all are simply tamed down. There's no brake noise for relaxed driving styles But I will reserve my comment on this one.
The steering is light and precise, But weighs up gracefully at higher speeds. U-Turning is far easier than my Fortuner or Safari.
Handling is Great and Supplied JK Elanzos Footwear do a wonderful Job. Not only they're silent but lend a good grip. I am yet to comment on their Emergency braking response and wet weather driving though. The Thread pattern is functional as well as pleasing to the eye.


Lights and Brights-

The interior is adored with bright lights, No qualms about that.
However the Headlights are a Hit and miss affair. Low beam is average, high beam is excellent. Low beam with fog lights serves the purpose though. The Projectors are Halogen whereas an HID setup would suit this segment better. However be careful about modifying them as lots of functions like Follow me home, Find my car, Auto lamps etc are wired up to them.

Regarding the Auto lamps, I am dis heartened. Yes, that’s a bummer.

I thought that it would be a “Set and forget” function but we cannot engage High beams in auto mode. The reason is the manual dipstick used for switching between low/High beams. My Safari had a Spring loaded (Comes back to neutral) dipstick for toggling between high and low beams that would have solved the problem here. The auto mode can start headlights in Low mode and driver can switch to High beams if road is clear. Wow! Mahindra should pay me for so many Suggestions!! We have to come out of Auto Lamp mode and employ regular mode to use High beams.

Now There is the infamous Shadow Problem with the Low Beam Projectors. Let the Pictures talk First-




Since this is an optical problem, I don't thing installing HIDs/ larger bulbs will help. However I have found the solution (LED) and stay with me for details of the same.

The Engine bay is so full that There's no Space for bulbs/mods, Even changing the bulbs may require you to Unmount battery. Not Good-


Rear fogs are separate Red Bulbs and Not just the reversing bulbs kept on (Like in many vehicles).

There are simple incandescent bulbs in tail lights and work well. LED lamps would have added to the charm though.

Auto Functions Fault-
Along with the Headlights, I am unhappy about the auto wiper design. Again thinking “Set and forget”about Wipers but the XUV 5OO actually “forgets” the setting every time key is turned off. We have to press the auto wiper button every time if we expect the rain. Mahindra Please fix the same! Good thing is auto folding side mirrors upon locking the vehicle.

AC performance is Good overall.
Middle row AC is very weak. They are merged into the First row blower. We have to ramp up the fan speed a notch up and it gets noisy. On My Fortuner, Last row and Middle Row are merged, Hence they have a powerful separate motor and cooling is better. Also, If we select Both Face and Feet mode, The Airflow to Face Vents Gets Half. All this means that a single motor is being overloaded with too many Vents and ducting. Last Row AC is best as the motor has only 2 vents. There's separate Fan speed control. Alas, This AC will be least used due to cramped last seat.
During My Gujrat Trip, The feet vents (Front) let out strange bursts of warm air and cool air, While face vents were continuously giving cool air. This has kept me puzzled. I'll update on this after more trips.
The auto ac prefers vent mode rather than Circulation mode. This makes it useless as Lots of Smell/ Smoke enters the cabin(Infamous Indian Conditions). Switching to Re-Circulation mode turns off the auto AC. Mahindra Should have left it alone.

I heard the Music on XUV Default setup . For vocals its fine, but as soon as i boosted the bass on my note the speakers started badly rattling and distorting. Woofer for bass lovers is a must in XUV. On the other hand, my Fortuner has factory speakers those sound way better than XUV and don't need a SUB that badly.
I paired my phone via BT and it was easy, considering first time user of XUV controls. The Audio system has line in, USB in, as well as RCA out for connecting amps and woofers (Headache version). There's no manual EQ but you get some presets. There's no built in crossover . We can control the XUV music system (remote) from mobile or also play music from mobile with Bluetooth. Best Thing is, we can pair 2 Phones for it. One for music(Mine) and One for calls (Eg. Dad's). Or we can have one phone do everything. There's no Visualization for the Music.
There's a cool Function Called AVC that will pump up the music depending on ambient noise!. Thumbs up for it!

I have a lot to say about this boy.
And Boy! Its Fascinating. The Signal antenna is very powerful and it catches well among buildings, Crowdy Places etc.
Pre Turn Warning is speed sensitive, If we are going slow, it gives warnings at 100 meters and again on spot. If we are going like 90~100Km/h It gives Pre warning at 400 Meters and so on.
If we take a diversion, It “Thinks” for a while and comes functional again. If we take some alternate route It again Thinks for 10 sec and understands/appends our route.
May I suggest that the turn indicator could be turned on auto at the Spot as Vehicle Knows our turns and maneuvers (With turn off setting)Or will that come with XUV 600 ? :-)

Center Console and Dash-
The console is well laid out and pleasant to use. Hazard warning lights are just a thumb away from the gear lever! Now that’s convenience.
I'd like so specifically mention-Radio irritation. The system will try every possible opportunity to switch to Radio. Receiving/Ending the call, Unplugging USB object/ Turning your Phones BT off (if it was playing music) or simply restarting the car; You'll be greeted by a loud Buzz every time. For people who live in FM coverage, it could be bearable but for me, meh! Its sheer annoying.
Infotainment Black box has a small fan that is more than audible in silent drives. You could probably see it during the audio teardown pics (Scroll down).
Else, audio does not restart on crank; AC, Headlights do.
Door open warning not is Not bold, That’s damn stupid. We have to enter the ALERTS menu to see it.
There rea small cubbyholes and Cup Holders around.
I had a heart Numbing issue of console resetting once during the Gujrat Trip. The WHOLE center console, Including the Music, GPS, AC, MID restarted in middle of nowhere. It scared the daylights out of me but soon came back from the Mahindra Rise clip. However the Steering, Engine etc was properly working and we didn’t crash or anything. Phew!

The Chiller is best suited for small 300ML Bottles or Coke cans. Wish they could have made it to accommodate 500ML Cold drink bottles. I am looking for suitable 300ML bottles that will get chilled quickly in this chiller (Plastic ones and Thermos don't help). You can also keep your FreshWipes here.


There's a coin holder above the fridge but Coins keep falling as we lift the lid up-


FE- During the complex Run of 1500 KM, MID shows FE of 13.5 KMPL. Physically the FE was calculated 13 KMPL. Don't know if there's an offset of half KM or the MID will optimize after few more runs. However 13KMPL is borderline disappointing but lets hope after first oil change.

It costs about 15.86. They weren’t ready to provide any discounts or Freebies, however i went face to face with the Branch manager and he's offered me a flat 10k less (eaten away just by the amp, not even woofer was done) on whatever accessories I take. However i feel cheated as accessories are Way overpriced. Can anyone confirm the rates? (Roof carrier- 14k~! Foot steps- 12k, Mats 3.5k, Chrome 5k. Camera the most useful and reasonably priced at 4k.)
I also feel a bit unfortunate as prices shot up by about 50k in January. It would've landed around 15.31 if i had booked in Dec 12.

Who Should buy this Vehicle?

A tech savvy person, Looking to enjoy all the functions, Soothing music and Peace of mind while Lazily cruising at about 80~90 KM/H
If you are in the market for compact, 7 seater SUV- My Personal Experience, I'll say GO FOR IT!
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Thread Starter #3
Oct 15, 2011
Some Village
Re: “Thunderbolt” XUV 5OO Detailed Review (Decals, Audio, LED, Mods++)

Perks, Points worth a note-

0)My first reaction was, Its SMALL . ITS DAMM TOO SMALL. Folks please don't go over the perception of Internet photos or videos and such. Its MUCH smaller in real life that it seems. On Highway in the rear mirror or approaching us from high speed it looks BEAST, but stand near it and beast tames down. Feels small. Parked next to my Fortuner, Its small in every angle. Length but also width. It seems very large from far away but is actually smaller. Damm! How many times i've used 'small' here?

1)Even the interior , Buttons, Seats, Consoles themselves are 80% size of fortuner. My dad gave an Idea that large grille is giving mammoth impression but the car narrows down from there. Especially glass area is much tapered off than the wheel arches (good 6~7 inches) hence its small from inside. So for people who come from Safari/Aria/Endevour/Fortuner will feel the XUV 500 is small.

Look at the side profile and you'll Understand.


2)It looks MEAN in white! I mean look at the wide Grin!
However I wanted to go for Blue color But alas! Blue one comes with black interior so it was white again.

3)The benefit would be that it won't bring you the sweat on forehead like safari or Fortuner does in tight city traffic. The views are open and vehicle is compact. also the Front AC is very powerful so any sweat will dry off. haa ha. However we have to be careful with puffed up wheel arches or these may be scratched.

4)There's a DRL relay slot provided. Perhaps in export versions, The tiny LED parking lamps are replaced with beefier ones and used as DRLs. Wish they had given True DRLs in India as well.

5)Third row should be renamed as Torture chamber. Much worse than XYLO or Fortuner even. My knees kept hitting the second row back and there's very claustrophobic feeling. However there's separate AC and mobile charging socket there. Also Reading lamps.

6) I wonder why didn't provide sliding rails on the second row to free up some space in the last row. Middle row has ample space. Are you listening, Mahindra?

7)There's zero boot space with all seats up. Be worried about woofer placement(Stay with me for solution). Maybe this SUV will be mostly used only in 5 or 6 seat configuration.

8) All the interior lights/ Indicators are LEDs. Reading lamps are bright (Pure white ). There's Lounge lighting option but color unfortunately can't be changed (It’s red, I'd like RGB)

9)The low beam projectors are Halogens and not HID! don't go by the looks. Headlights don't seem very powerful but do the job with Fogs on.

10) LED parking lamps seem to be low quality , China LED. The color is almost purple (8000 Kelvin) and not pure white. They're not Bright. Wish they had made the color matched to Headlights(4000 Kelvin).

11)Sound insulation is awesome. We need to really put that gear indicator display to good use. Listening music or Conversations are going to be very pleasant in this car.

12) Brakes give that infamous Grinding Noise and vibration that everyone keeps talking about. However the Braking seems fine itself. The same Vibration appears when Fiercely accelerating in First or Second gear. So maybe its the tyres and not the brake problem after all. XUV badly needs some AT/s. Perhaps Yokohoma Geolander that I've been Satisfactorily using for both Safari and Fortuner.

13)Steering rod rubs onto the Right foot when Turning at low speeds (known issue)

14) I hit a large recession in road when cruising at 80 and the vehicle felt stable. The car landed with a large THUMP but held its straight line.

15)Idea of using a pull up ring for reverse is a novel and useful one. Because there are 6 forward gears on XUV

16) Engine Performance is similar to Fortuner but not better. However 6 gear means very silent and lazy highway cruising. The power delivery really starts after 2000 RPM and not 1500 RPM like Fortuner

17) Awesome Convex Conversation mirror to keep watch on naughty kids or just to make a chit chat.

18) Vehicle is really low and easy to sit into. My mom loves it. We don't actually need those optional pricey foot steps for this one.

19)Genuine accessories (As I guessed) are Horribly Overpriced! Roof carrier- 14k~! Foot steps- 12k, Mats 3.5k, Chrome 5k. Camera the most useful and reasonably priced at 4k.
Expensive accessories price list.

20)You WILL need the camera installed because all i can see in Rear view mirror are the faces/Headrests of occupants (esp third row). Even during moving, I feel there should be a mode to keep rear camera ON (It was in my safari) for the sake of safety. There's an option in Vehicle Info screen but it shows black display unless reverse gear is engaged. Hmm... makes me think. Perhaps the power is delivered from Reverse bulb and if a continuous power is provided, I may continuous display...

21)There are headrests for ALL 7 seats. Better keep them down for Rearward visibility. Using neck Pillows aggravates the problem.

22)TD vehicle had a Fuel economy figures of 13 KMPL (we can view on Mobile as well). In real world I shall expect figures around 14 KMPL

23)Ride quality and comfort is very good but not as good as safari. XUV takes in small potholes like breakfast but we feel slightly large potholes and undulations bone shaking. In short, Small holes will be supressed but “Zoor ka Jhatka Zoor se lage” (Large Bumps Feel larger)

24)After being roughly driven for a year, The TD vehicle felt very smooth and there were no signs of anything failing or breaking off. Thumbs up Mahindra!

25)Tried Hill control and Hill Descent Control. and it works like a charm. It controls the car Via braking on downhill and keeps speed controlled. On uphill situation, It won't allow the car to roll back even with brake released and Clutch depressed. Pleasantly, this option is also included on 2wd version.
About Hill hold, it needs to be activated by pressing brake once. Then, it holds vehicle even if brake is released or Clutch is depressed. Otherwise (if not activated) the vehicle rolls backward. But works for 4 seconds only. Wish it could be set permanently. Like if we are going uphill on a curve and need to wait for the oncoming vehicles to pass.

26)Separate Foot AC vents for second row are installed under front seats. Indian vehicle First!

27)There's Recline adjustment for middle row.

28)Can someone tell me if this is the antenna or Rear Defogger? And why are the Lines appearing “Scratched” here and there?


29)Courtesy the Sporty design there's a large Rear Haunch Which I don't like. It eats away into last row glass area. Wish they could have given flat line and larger glass area.


30)The Horns on this vehicle are Stereo unlike other companies that give single horn. You may feel tempted to change them but that's Unnecessary. Stand in front of the vehicle and THEN hear them. There's Lot of Sound insulation magic working if you judge Horns from inside the cabin.

31)If you frequent to Gujrat where installing a yellow strip is mandatory on Driver side headlamp, Make it very thin and install it far on the edge or you'll interfere with Static bending lamps. Actually these things are not required on any modern vehicles (even 10 year old designs and up) But Stupid Rules- DAMM YOU!!


32)Cruise control is eager to Keep my feet happy but Idiotic Indian traffic. Duh! You can hold the PLUS button to get a nice thrust of speed for overtaking, Same for NEG button if you want to pass something carefully. However these buttons can be held only a max 12 Sec or the Cruise mode will get locked and can't be started again until you restart the car. I feel that's very stupid by design, Why not allow it like 1 minute or better Till the Min/Max Speed of particular gear?

33) There's a sort of pseudo gear suggestion system going on. Its not very clear, but if we mount a wrong gear, the suggested gear is shown for a fraction of second in the dial before showing current gear (All this happens during the time we release the clutch). I want this system enhanced and displayed in MID(eg by showing “Wrong gear! Please Shift to #) Girls would love it!
Thread Starter #4
Oct 15, 2011
Some Village
Re: “Thunderbolt” XUV 5OO Detailed Review (Decals, Audio, LED, Mods++)

Mods Section-

Decals (In progress)- (Please vote for color of decals)

Reverse camera Install-
Got reverse Cam fitted same day of Delivery. had to splice the rear tail lamp wiring for the same. Tail Lamp was opened for the Purpose. Being a Genuine Mahindra Cam, I feel that shouldn’t have been the case. The Cam wiring has to be Brought up to the center Console and many Plastics, Panels have to be Removed for the Same. We need to 'activate' the Cam from Laptop! wow.!

The cam-






Audio Install-

After Hunting half a Day, I found a good amp that had separate Crossovers for Front and Rear Channels. It also had an Bypass out to Daisy-Chain more Amps if you need. Amp is rated at 400W RMS.

GT-X646 | 800-watt, four-channel car audio amplifier | JBL India

However, Installing this was a complete Trauma. At one point, I thought about canceling and putting everything back again. But the mastermind(Boss) himself arrived and helped in installing that lifted my spirits a bit

Prying the console-




Center console away (Notice the wires!)



But RCA could not be found and Lots of stuff was opened at this level. Gear Bezel opened.


Finally there was a RCA Header INSIDE the Blackbox. We had to completely Take out the black box and install the header INSIDE by opening it up. This is very scary and I'm mad at Mahindra for this. why don't companies provide RCA outs conveniently??! (Like under the Driver Seat)




Finally got the amp installed under Driver Seat. As a bonus it gets cooled by the Feet AC vent.
No Fixing or Drilling was done. Amp is just Placed there.


Connection of the amp was a headache (literally). I'll never forget that experience.

By the time, I decided to my put my Gray cells to use for woofer design, Owing to Expensive space.

Once you get hold of Knowledge, There's nothing like car speaker/Home theater or Car amp/ HT amp or This speaker that speaker. You can use any and many combination of these and with some tweaking, you should get satisfactory sound. I have used Car Systems (HU and Amps, Speakers) in Home and installed Computer 7.1 in cars. Of course, a layman will prefer to simply buy the well known stuff and enjoy peace of mind. But it was not the layman who invented something extra ordinary eh?

Speakers are nothing but fancy air pumps. Their rhythmic movement action on the air generates the sound that we listen. That makes the cone area important, More cone area- More air is moved in each stroke. There are many other parameters like T/S but that's a very wide topic now.

Here's it what I had carried on my 1200Km Trip to Gujrat.


Yes This is a PC home Theater, and gave AMPLE bass for the time. I am looking forward to make a slimmer box for it so that it can fit under the SECOND row bench.

Here is the 5.5 inch driver-


Here are some pics for the idea-


Infact my brain is still ticking and I am planning to go Small but dual/Triple woofer setup. This way I will retail all the boot space (all that is ) and still have neat bass. Added benefit would be that last row users won’t complain of headache as woofers will be distributed under Middle and First row seats, Giving universal Bass.



HID/LED Driving lights- (EDIT- LED upgrade is done, Uploading Pics soon)

Something like this? Sports car LED lights-
DIY Sports Car LED headlights

Special thanks to My family, TAI forums and its loyal members Like

Iron Rock

.........And many more!
Thread Starter #5
Oct 15, 2011
Some Village
Re: “Thunderbolt” XUV 5OO Detailed Review (Decals, Audio, LED, Mods++)

LED Lights Mod-

Finally! I'ts here! I have added an LED fog light (Self made) to the XUV 5OO to avert the shadow Problem and aid in general night safety.

The LED light is shown in detail here- DIY Sports Car LED headlights

The Light consists of 8 Nos LED each being driven at 2 watts (They're 3~4 Watt capable). Total power consumption is 16w and output is 1500 Lumens. In the contrast, Factory XUV 5OO Fogs eat away 70W of power and Give only 1400 Lumens! I don't need them anymore since this LED install.

They are wired to come on with LOW beams (even auto lamp)
There's No Glare or Dazzle at eye level for Oncomer's safety(Safety Shot). This is ensured via special narrow Viewing angle lenses that I have mounted onto LED emitters.

Due to difference in camera and eye perception, please keep in mind that Camera shows the LED light as a narrow stream, right in front of car. Actually, the beam is much wider and also makes way into Low beam territory. Which makes low beams seem brighter as well. All pics are taken in MANUAL MODE and no editing is performed except privacy blanking.

Please enjoy the pics-

Comparo Set 1




Comparo Set 2



Comparo Set 3





Glamour Shot-


Safety Shot-



Some WIP shots-




Simple Kill switch to keep them off during city driving-


Double diodes for Safety and lowering the voltage-





Last edited by a moderator:
Thread Starter #6
Oct 15, 2011
Some Village
Re: “Thunderbolt” XUV 5OO Detailed Review (Decals, Audio, LED, Mods++)

BlueSense System-

Long before I booked the THUNDERBOLT, I knew that Mahindra has an Android app Called BlueSense. Its an Indian First that allows you to view various vehicle info and Control Music right from the Mobile Phone! I Played around with the App and it sure is Novel. Infact, It reminds me of some Old James Bond Movie where Bond controls His car using a tablet !!If the Spirit continues, those days may not far away from us...

You Can view the Fuel Statistics-


AC information, Pity that you can't change Blower speeds etc from the phone-


You can control the music that's playing from USB/CD and also view the name of current track-


However, I simply end up playing the Music through my phone BT rather than USB+Blue sense.

You Get to see the Tire Pressure as well as temp for all 5 wheels!! Yippiee!!


Strangely, The Main Screen only Shows OK...OK....OK rather than Temp and actual pressure that BlueSense app can show. I want Mahindra to Fix this Anomaly.

Thread Starter #7
Oct 15, 2011
Some Village
Re: “Thunderbolt” XUV 5OO Detailed Review (Decals, Audio, LED, Mods++)

Subtle Observations-

I had Back to Back drives in Fortuner and 5OO, Here are my observations-

> Fortuner has a higher Floor but Low seating position that's Less comfortable Esp for Tall people.

> Navigating 5OO in tight City is FAR easier. Due to reason above, small dimensions and better view of sides. On Fortuner the dashboard is too tall for visiblity and what all I can see is the 'Nose". And I am worried to dash that nose here and there.

> Rearward view is much better in Fortuner.

> Fortuner has tremendous low down torque and engine clipping is absent ! What a relief. You can dump the clutch in Idle speeds and Fortuner Lunges forward; whereas XUV 5OO clips out with a loud THUD.

> The steering is much harder than 5OO, gear is too tall.

> Fortuner gives the feeling of Sitting in a DITCH. Dooor panels, Levers, Dashboard etc is very high and gives you a Suffocating feeling. However on the XUV 5OO door panels etc are low and glass area is extended (esp first row), Giving you a KING like feeling with clear view around. Very airy cabin.


Honoured Member
Aug 24, 2009
Dubai / Mumbai
Re: “Thunderbolt” XUV 5OO Detailed Review (Decals, Audio, LED, Mods++)

Let me the first to congratulate you. XUV look killer in white. The review was awesome, quite exhaustive. I would say - avoid decals, it wont looks good IMHO.

The pic of the rear windows shows the rear defogger, it is not the antenna. Looks like someone has peeled off some part off your defogger.

Enjoy your XUV.
Last edited:
Feb 10, 2012
Re: “Thunderbolt” XUV 5OO Detailed Review (Decals, Audio, LED, Mods++)

Wow, what a review

Congrats on your new XUV, look's like this thread is going to turn into another epic go to thread in terms of XUV queries.
Feb 2, 2012
Re: “Thunderbolt” XUV 5OO Detailed Review (Decals, Audio, LED, Mods++)

Congratulations buddy for your new acquisition [clap].

Welcome to the gang(XUV) [;)]

And loved reading your review and just a friendly advice mate, please stay from decals. XUV looks better without them.

Wishing you miles of happiness .
Mar 22, 2013
Re: “Thunderbolt” XUV 5OO Detailed Review (Decals, Audio, LED, Mods++)

Congratulation for your XUV 500.nice review, nice pictures, drive safe.
Thread Starter #12
Oct 15, 2011
Some Village
Re: “Thunderbolt” XUV 5OO Detailed Review (Decals, Audio, LED, Mods++)

Mods, please enable Edit for My Posts.
May I suggest that Edit option be generally kept alive for all author Posts in Reviews Section.
Also may I request a POLL maybe added to the thread-

"Which colour decals would you like on this Vehicle?"
Carbon Fiber
Something else (Post it in thread)

Will that be possible Mods?
Last edited:
Thread Starter #13
Oct 15, 2011
Some Village
Re: “Thunderbolt” XUV 5OO Detailed Review (Decals, Audio, LED, Mods++)

Let me the first to congratulate you. XUV look killer in white. The review was awesome, quite exhaustive. I would say - avoid decals, it wont looks good IMHO.

The pic of the rear windows shows the rear defogger, it is not the antenna. Looks like someone has peeled off some part off your defogger
Enjoy your XUV.
Hmm That grabbed my eye. How to test the defogger? I mean how do i know that its working at optimum levels or not? Its that way since we got Delivery.
And if thats defogger, Where's the antenna?

Wow, what a review

Congrats on your new XUV, look's like this thread is going to turn into another epic go to thread in terms of XUV queries.
THATS what i want. All questions and discussions are welcome.
Congratulations buddy for your new acquisition [clap].

Welcome to the gang(XUV) [;)]

And loved reading your review and just a friendly advice mate, please stay from decals. XUV looks better without them.

Wishing you miles of happiness .
Thanks. Decals - I am going to Photoshop them on a pic and show you all first.
Congratulation for your XUV 500.nice review, nice pictures, drive safe.
Dec 1, 2011
Re: “Thunderbolt” XUV 5OO Detailed Review (Decals, Audio, LED, Mods++)

Congrats bhvm! Exhaustive writeup!
Enjoy many a safe miles with Thunderbolt!


Honoured Member
Aug 24, 2009
Dubai / Mumbai
Re: “Thunderbolt” XUV 5OO Detailed Review (Decals, Audio, LED, Mods++)

And if thats defogger, Where's the antenna?
You can test the defogger only when the window mists.

The antenna is embedded in the front windshield, as far as I remember.
Last edited by a moderator:
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