Mumbai - Mahindra, just like the Ssangyong brand that it owns, is not exactly known for its design finesse, but you have to admit that its latest creation is a neat little thing by comparison.

The first ever XUV300 was created to take on the Ford EcoSport and Renault Captur, and it looks set to reach South Africa soon.

At the compact SUV’s unveiling event in India, Mahindra’s Managing Director Dr Pawan Goenka told IndianAutosBlog that the XUV300’s Indian and South African launches would take place “almost simultaneously”, and that’s likely to be around February 2019, according to the publication.

The XUV300 is based on the Ssangyong Tivoli, but is slightly shorter, with its overall length dropping to just below four metres in order to qualify for Indian tax incentives.

The Mahindra version has its own unique styling and it appears it’s engines will be unique too.

Although the powertrain line-up has yet to be officially confirmed, many sources are speculating that customers will get to choose between a 1.2-litre turbopetrol and 1.5-litre turbodiesel. That’s likely to be the same 1.5 TD that powers the TUV300, which produces 74kW and 240Nm, which sounds just about right for a vehicle of that size.

Although there will almost certainly be a wide range of model grades, as Mahindra is known for, top models appear well equipped with touchscreen infotainment, dual-zone climate control, push-button start and leather upholstery.

It's too early to comment on local pricing, but it is worth noting that the XUV300 is priced slightly above the Ford EcoSport in India, according to reports.

IOL Motoring