Indian ute manufacturer Mahindra Automotive says that many Australian 4x4 owners are keen to go adventure driving but are too scared to do it.
A survey conducted at Mahindra dealerships along the Eastern Seaboard found that 32 per cent of ute owners were interested in 4x4 touring but had never done anything about it.
Another 7.2 per cent said they go touring with friends but wouldn’t brave the elements in their own vehicle.
The results prompted the company to develop a four-wheel drive guide to help first-timers and those unsure about how to prepare, what to take and other general safety tips for going off-road.
Mahindra Australia CEO, Claire Tynan, said it was important for drivers to have confidence in their car and themselves before setting off into the great unknown.
“Through talking to buyers and understanding the market via extensive research we found that drivers are rightfully apprehensive of finding themselves in sticky situations in remote areas.
“This is why understanding a 4x4 vehicle before making a purchase and questioning the brand’s capability and reliability, as well as taking all of the right precautions before heading out, is absolutely vital.“This sort of knowledge makes a huge difference in terms of confidence on those special adventure trips as well as on the road daily,” she said.
Rees Leyshon was one of the more apprehensive drivers who had a lifelong dream to four-wheel drive up to Cape York.
He said learning the basics from the Mahindra guide and dealers and understanding his car helped him to overcome the fear and live the dream.
“It just takes time to do your research and build confidence with your vehicle once you’ve bought it before you can go out there and conquer some tough tracks. But it’s well worth it.”
Tips from the 4x4 guide include:
- Tyres, brakes and steering should all be in good condition, and oil and water levels should be checked
- Spare equipment should include: fan belts, radiator hoses, fuel filter, engine oil, gear oil and brake fluid
- Basic recovery equipment such as snatch straps, shovel, and basic toolkit are among the essential items to carry
- Try to travel with another vehicle or a four-wheel drive club and avoid travelling alone