Force Motors Gurkha

₹ 9.13 Lakhs

On-Road Price, Mumbai

Overview of the car

SUV

Manual

Diesel

N/A

63 Litres

N/A

5 Seater

3 Years / 1,00,000 kms

Performance Metrics
0

N/A

Top Speed
0

N/A

0-100 kph
11.6

Meters

Turning Cycle
Tech Specs

Engine

Displacement
2596 cc
Max Power
80 bhp
Torque
23.45 kgm
Number of Cylinder(s)
4

Dimensions

Wheel Base
2400 mm
Ground Clearance
210 mm
Bootspace
500 ltrs
Turning Circle
11.6 mtrs
Click to view the car dimensions chart

Suspension & Chassis

Front Suspension
Independent with Solid Torsion Bar with Anti-Roll Bar
Rear Suspension
Semi Ellipitical Leaf Spring with Hydraulic Telescopic Shock Absorber & Anti Roll Bar
Steering Type
Power Assisted (Hydraulic)
Tyres
Front: 245/70 R16
Rear: 245/70 R18
Front Brakes
Disc
Rear Brakes
Drum
Reviews and Video
NARAIN IMG

Narain Says

The Gurkha has a well-controlled ride with just a little pitch from the front. It isn't particularly happy when going around corners fast. Which is fine – this is an off-roader, not a corner carver.

HORMAZD IMG

Hormazd Says

The Gurkha comes across as a properly capable off-roader, but it is significantly more expensive than the Mahindra Thar and though it has more standard off-road kit, it isn't that much better than the Mahindra in terms of finesse.

TorqueX Review

What you’ll like?

N/A

What you won’t like?

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TorqueX Says

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AUTOCAR
Autocar Review

Force Motors Gurkha Review, Road Test

Force Motors Gurkha

Off-road enthusiasts will remember the Gurkha from 2008. Force Motors, then Bajaj Tempo, made an off-road vehicle based heavily on the Mercedes-Benz G-wagon, mainly for export. A limited number (40 to be precise) were sold to the Indian public between 2008 and 2010, after which it faded away. Now, spurred on by the increased interest in adventure sports and off-roading, Force Motors has come up with this updated Gurkha, aimed at the off-road crowd. It is Force Motors second offering after the Force One.

The official name is Force Gurkha E.O.V. 4x4x4. In English that means Extreme Off-road Vehicle and the three 4s stand for a vehicle that has four-wheel drive and can take on four seasons and four kinds of terrain; silly name, but does it live up to it?
 
The specs are impressive though. For Rs 8.5 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi) for the top-end Gurkha Hard-top, there is some serious mud-plugging kit on offer. Standard equipment includes mechanical differential locks for the front and rear axles, a snorkel that allows it to go swimming in water 550mm deep, a transfer case with low-ratios and all-terrain tyres mounted on alloy wheels borrowed from the Force One.
 
 

Under the Gurkha's'designer skin' is the same basic body as the old Gurkha. It is mounted on a beefy tubular ladder frame that is also from the old Gurkha. The front suspension is an independent, double wishbone arrangement with an anti-roll bar, while the rear is a leaf spring, anti-roll bar and live axle combination. Brakes are via discs up front and drums at the rear. 

Powering the Gurkha is a Mercedes-Benz OM616-derived 2596cc turbo-charged, inter-cooled direct injection (not common-rail) diesel that makes a modest 81bhp and 23.5kgm of torque. It doesn't meet BSIV emission norms as of now, but work is on to make it so. Mated to a five-speed G18 gearbox from Mercedes-Benz, it powers the rear wheels under normal conditions and all four if you stir through the second gearlever that sits between the front seats.On our short test drive at a specially designed off-road course at the Force Motors plant in Pune, a few things were immediately apparent.
 
The view from the driver's seat is great – the Gurkha's slim pillars don't obstruct your view much and its old-school square lines make it easy to place the Gurkha accurately on narrow off-road tracks. The two-tone dashboard is simple and straightforward. Ahead of you are the dials, which consist of a speedo, temperature- and fuel gauge with a tiny rev-counter placed under the air-con vents. The AC vents are hugely adjustable but the AC itself has no thermostat control and wasn't particularly strong on cooling. 
 
 

Plastic quality and fit-and-finish are better than the Mahindra Thar's, but that's not saying much anyway. You'll find plenty of gaps between the dash panels, and lots of cheap bits. The driving position is mixed bag too– the steering wheel slopes away from you (much like a truck's), there's no seat height or steering rake adjust, and slotting the long-throw five-speed ’box into the dog-leg first is quite a stretch. That said, the Gurkha's seats, its moulded roof lining and the bright, airy interiors are quite nice by off-roader standards. You access the forward-facing rear seats by lifting the front seats out of the way (the soft-top version has conventional side-facing seats). Sit on the high seats and you'll discover they have plenty of legroom, width and thigh support. However, owing to their high-set position, tall passengers might find their heads brushing against the roof lining. 

Twist the key, the engine catches almost immediately and settles into a gravelly idle. The clutch, you will find, is heavy but progressive in the way it engages. Stretch to slot into first, get off the clutch and you'll find the Gurkha moves off with surprising zest. However, it's soon time to stretch again and shift to second as the engine only revs to a disappointingly low 3500rpm.The Gurkha feels incredibly short geared(which is why it feels so responsive) andwhile this last bit gives you incredible throttle control off-road, it translates to plenty of gearshifts on the road.

 

And gearshifts are something you'll tire of in the Gurkha – apart from the incredibly long throws (which makes rocking a stuck vehicle back and forth almost impossible), the gearbox is rather vague and needs a lot of effort to operate.The same goes for the gearlever that operates the transfer case.

Nonetheless, the suspension seems pretty sorted. The Gurkha displayed a well-controlled ride over the Belgian pave track with little pitch from the front and just a bit of kick from the rear. As for the handling, the Gurkha uses a power-assisted, worm-and-roller steering mechanism that makes for a deliberately low-geared steering. That means plenty of turns lock to lock and slow responses. And, thanks to its two-metre height and relatively narrow width, it isn't particularly happy when going around corners fast. Which is fine – this is an off-roader, not a corner carver.

Speaking of which, as an off-roader, it is really impressive. Force Motors says it has an approach, ramp-over and departure angle of 37,29 and 34 degrees respectively, and ground clearance stands at 210mm. In 4x4 low mode, it can climb a 40-degree slope, and the engine's low speed idling has been calibrated to allow it to climb a 25-degree slope without any throttle inputs.
On Force Motor's specially constructed off-road track, the Gurkha simply felt unstoppable. We took it through deep holes, had two wheels in the air occasionally, made it climb a 40-degree slope, down a 35-degree slope and drove through water. If it ever got stuck, tugging the pull-type, manually engaged differential locks would get us going again. Still, we did notice that wheel articulation isn't great.
 
 

The Gurkha comes across as a properly capable off-roader, but there's no denying that it needs quite a lot of polishing. At Rs 8.5 lakh, it is Rs 1.4 lakh more expensive than the Mahindra Thar and though it has more standard off-road kit, it isn't that much better than the Mahindra in terms of finesse. You could excuse this lack of finesse as a byproduct of a hardy off-roader, but at this price, people will expect more. 

Apart from this 4x4 hard-top, the Gurkha is available as a 4x4 soft-top as well for Rs 15,000 less. There's also a base 4x2 soft-top that costs Rs 6.25 lakh. As it doesn't meet BSIV norms, you can't buy it in a lot of cities, but then again, the whole point of a vehicle like this is to use it away from a city. Force Motors is offering it in three colours– matt black, metallic red and green and most impressively, it comes with a three-year/3,00,000km warranty. It will be in dealerships by the end of April 2013.

 

 

 

 

Fact File

 

Engine

Fuel Diesel
Type 2596cc direct injection intercooled turbo

Transmission

Type Single lever selective 4x4
Gearbox 5-speed manual

Dimensions

Length 3992mm
Width 1820mm
Height 2055mm
Wheel base 2400mm
Ground clearance 210mm

Chassis & Body

Wheels 6.5Jx16 alloy
Tyres 245/70R16

Suspension

Front Independent, solid torsion bar, hydraulic telescopic shock absorbers and anti-roll bar
Rear Semi elliptical leaf spring iwth hydraulic telescopic shock absorbers and anti roll bar

Brakes

Front Disc
Rear Drum
 
 
 
 

Comfort & Convenience

  • Central Locking
  • Remote Locking
  • Total Immobilizer
  • Climate Control
  • Remote Boot Release
  • Remote Fuel Lid
  • Front Fog Lamps
  • Rear Wiper
  • Rear Defogger
  • Front Power Windows
  • Rear Power Windows
  • Trip Computer
  • Electric Adjust wing mirror
  • Dead Pedal
  • Cruise Control
  • Paddle shifters
  • Sunroof
  • Refrigerator
  • Rain Sensing Wipers
  • Air Conditioner
  • Electric Sun Blinds
  • Leather Wrapped Steering
  • Reversing Camera
  • Hill Start Assist
  • 360 degree camera
  • Heads Up Display
  • Stop/start
  • Daytime running lights
  • LED Lights
  • Adaptive headlights
  • Headlamp Washers
  • Rear AC Vents
  • Rear Power Outlet

Drivers Aid & Safety

  • ABS
  • ESP
  • EBD
  • Brake Assist
  • Parking Sensors
  • Airbags Total

Seating

  • Driver Seat Height Adjust
  • Split rear seats
  • Leather Upholstery
  • Folding Rear Seats
  • Front Adjustable Headrests
  • Rear Adjustable Headrests
  • Passenger Seat Height Adjust
  • Lumbar Support
  • Third row of seats
  • Seat Massagers
  • Seat Memory
  • Cooled Seats
  • Electric Seats
  • Driver Seat Power Adjust
  • Rear Seat Foldable Table
  • Rear Seat Centre Armrest

Entertainment & Communication

  • TouchScreen Audio System
  • Audio system (with Radio)
  • USB Port
  • Bluetooth & Streaming
  • Steering Audio Controls
  • Speakers
  • Hands Free Telephony
  • Satellite Navigation
  • Single CD Player
  • Rear seat screens
  • Subwoofer
  • Voice activated controls

Tyres & Wheels

  • Spare wheel
  • Space saver
  • Alloy Wheels
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