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After much teasing in the last few days, Mahindra has launched the Bolero Neo SUV, bringing the price announcement back by a couple of days. It starts at Rs 8.48 lakh, ex-showroom.

As we had guesstimated, the Bolero Neo is essentially a refreshed TUV3OO with a host of updates, and is likely Mahindra’s effort at giving renewed life to the TUV, which didn’t exactly set sales charts on fire; having the Bolero name attached to it may help with public perception of the SUV.

At the front, the Bolero Neo gets fresh headlights, with LED DRLs on top. There’s a new bumper, new chrome grille and new fog lamps, and the C-pillar gets the blacked-out treatment; the D-pillar, meanwhile, is the same colour as the body. There are still cues from the Bolero, however – that solid stance, the square wheel arches, the clam-type bonnet. The alloy wheels are new and of a 5-spoke design, and at the back, you get a spoiler and a X-style spare tyre cover.

The cabin hasn’t been worked on that much, but you get a new instrument cluster, beige upholstery, a tilt-adjustable steering wheel and an arm rest for the 2nd row of seats. Features that are considered essential today abound – 7-inch touchscreen infotainment, Bluetooth, cruise control, electric ORVMs, steering mounted controls and suchlike. Dual front airbags, ABS, reversing parking sensors, EBD and CBC make up the safety kit, with ISOFIX mounts available as options.

The Bolero Neo hasn’t changed mechanically over the TUV3OO. Thus the 1.5-litre 3-cylinder BS6 diesel engine – with start-stop tech – does duty, with 100 bhp and 26.5 kgm of torque, mated to a 5-speed manual ‘box. The underpinnings are the 3rd-gen Scorpio’s ladder-frame chassis, and on the top spec version, you get a mechanically locking differential. Final drive is to the rear wheels.

Both the Bolero and the Bolero Neo will be sold side by side, and the idea appears to be to appeal to customers who want a Bolero with a little extra oomph and features. Given how popular the Bolero continues to be, we don’t see Mahindra having a problem shifting the Neo either.