The Multix rivals the segment leader Tata Ace with its multiple body styles and is powered by a small and frugal 511cc diesel engine.
The Light Commercial Vehicle (LCV) is an extremely important segment that amasses massive volumes. With every commercial vehicle manufacturer eyeing this segment closely, it is now Eicher in collaboration with its US based partner Polaris that is making a grand entry into the segment with the all-new Multix, which is being called a Personal Utility Vehicle (PUV). The Eicher Polaris Multix has been officially launched at a price of Rs. 2.32 lakhs with three variants on offer, the top-end costs Rs. 2.72 lakhs (ex-showroom, Jaipur). The first product to come from the collaboration, the Multix is available in different body styles and is designed to carry cargo as well as passengers.
The front fascia on the Eicher Polaris Multix is simplistic with single barrel headlamps and stubby black cladding in the centre that holds the logo as well. The LCV gets black cladding throughout the lower section and on the A and B-pillars as well as the roof. Eicher Polaris is offering the Multix with a 511cc diesel engine which produces 9.8 BHP of power at 3000 RPM and 27.1 Nm of torque between 1400-2200 RPM. The single-cylinder mill is matched to a 4-speed manual gearbox that returns a claimed fuel efficiency of 28.45 km/l.
The oil burner gets new X-Port tech and also comes with an additional electric motor that generates up to 4 BHP of power. The vehicle uses a tubular frame (with roll over protection system) and has a ground clearance of 225 mm, it runs on 155/80/13 Ceat tyres. The body of the LCV is being called Flexituff and with the rear-seats folded, the Multix boasts of 1918-litres of luggage space which is handy in case of emergencies, like carrying a patient.
Inside the cabin, the Eicher Polaris Multix comes with a basic dashboard and features a three-spoke steering wheel, with a three-dial instrument cluster and a dashboard integrated gear lever. The LCV gets three-point safety seat belts for the driver and passenger. Keeping costs in check, the LCV gets a single wiper blade instead of the usual two. The Multix is a cross between a car-pickup-generator. The target audience is small business owners, farmers, skilled workers, contractors and small factory owners, basically tier 3 and 4 markets. Most of the aforementioned people use 2-wheelers and the Indo-US company would like to convert them into new vehicle owners.
Eicher Polaris has commenced production of the new Multix at its facility near Jaipur and has invested Rs. 350 crores on this project. The current production capacity is 60,000 units per annum which can be scaled up to 1.2 lakh units. The Multix’s main rival is the Tata Ace and Mahindra Maxximo in the segment. The company has launched the product in 30 cities right away and will commence test drives next month while deliveries will happen from August. There are no plans to export the Multix yet.