You won't be able to buy one of the cheapest and toughest off-roaders on the market anymore.
Most auto manufacturers give their models facelifts to modernize the appearance and technologies between the launch of all-new generations, and of course, to fend off the competition. But when the refreshed Mahindra Roxor showed its face earlier this year, it was to ensure that its off-roader looked a lot less like the more celebrated Jeep Wrangler. Below, you can compare the pre-facelifted Roxor with the updated model (minus the Jeep-like grille) and the Wrangler itself.
As far back as 2018, it was reported that Fiat Chrysler was suing the Indian manufacturer for the copycat styling of the Roxor. In the latest turn of events, a report by Bloomberg indicates that FCA has proved successful in its mission to prevent the Roxor from being imported stateside.
The International Trade Commission vindicated a judge's late-2019 findings that the Roxor was a copy of the Jeep. FCA's original complaint states that the similarities between the two models were nearly identical, and made specific reference to the "boxy body shape with flat-appearing vertical sides and rear body ending at about the same height as the hood." In a response to the accusations, Mahindra said that it isn't in violation and that FCA wants "a practical monopoly over the import and sale of components used in any boxy, open-topped, military-style vehicle."
Mahindra previously said it would make further aesthetic updates to the Roxor if required, but with the latest ruling, this appears not to matter. It comes at a challenging time for the Indian automaker, since its domestic market has been drastically affected by the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. Until now, the Roxor's components were made in India and the little off-roader was assembled at a Michigan plant. Following its most recent facelift, we see little reason that the affordable Roxor - it starts at well under $20,000 - should be banned in the US. But it looks like FCA may have just gained the upper hand in a battle that's lasted for over two years, which unfortunately means that the consumer loses out on an otherwise great product.