Car (South Africa) - - TEST -

THE Mahin­dra Pik Up is still do­ing its job without fuss or fan­fare as it con­veys goods and pas­sen­gers in Cape Town and to the farm over week­ends. While I’ve been im­pressed with the ar­ray of tie-down hooks around the load bay, as well as the large lip which can be used for fur­ther con­nec­tion points, un­for­tu­nately there are no tie-down eyes on the floor. This would be very handy to se­cure goods that are lower than the top of the bay.

The en­gine is easy-go­ing, flex­i­ble, dif­fi­cult to stall and can han­dle low revs, even idling along in sixth at around 50 km/h without the driver need­ing to use the throt­tle. Cruise con­trol adds to the com­fort as you rest your feet on the spa­cious floor with your el­bows on the arm­rests; ideal for long jour­neys.

The gear­box has one of the best shift ac­tions in a bakkie. The phrase used to be “knife through but­ter” but, these days, it’s more like “flick­ing a light switch” with a light, pos­i­tive, me­chan­i­cal feel. The Pik Up does have a rather large turn­ing cir­cle, though, which re­quires care­ful ma­noeu­vring when park­ing.

The JK Elanzo tyres are not a brand well known in South Africa but they are cop­ing well with the sharp rocks on my farm that have caused a num­ber of punc­tures on var­i­ous ve­hi­cles in the last few years.

The low-fuel lamp comes on when there is still more than 100 km avail­able be­fore the tank runs dry and gen­er­ally over 800 km on a tank is the norm.

Re­cently, a warn­ing light has il­lu­mi­nated on the dis­play screen in­di­cat­ing it’s time for a ser­vice. In­ter­vals used to be 5 000 km but this has re­cently been ex­tended to 10 000 km, so I’ll pop in at the lo­cal dealer to have the com­puter re­set until the ser­vice is due in Novem­ber.

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