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  1. Vehicle Identification Number which is also known as VIN, in short, is a unique identification number marked on the vehicle in different locations (Engine bay, passenger compartment, etc). This helps us find the exact month and year the vehicle was manufactured. This is really useful to know whether the dealer is selling us the new vehicle or else a vehicle manufactured 6 months ago and even a year ago. However reading it isn't an easy job, neither is a tough job. It just requires proper decoding codes and knowledge of what alphabet, number on the big VIN says what. VIN pattern is different from manufacturer to manufacturer. Sometimes even cars to cars in the same manufacturer. Here are the codes to decode the VIN of different manufacturers. Using this, one can find out what exactly the VIN represents. NOTE: The letters "I", "O" and "Q" are never used in a VIN. NOTE: None of the below mentioned VIN represents the original VIN of any manufacturer. HONDA CAR INDIA VIN Characters: 17 (MAK*****AE********) Method:9th character - MONTH of Manufacture (A) refer above VIN 10th character - YEAR of Manufacture (E) refer above VIN Month Codes:A = JAN, B = FEB, C = MAR, D = APR, E = MAY, F = JUN, G = JUL, H = AUG, J = SEP, K = OCT, L = NOV, M = DEC Year Codes:A = 2010, B = 2011, C = 2012, D = 2013, E = 2014, F = 2015, G = 2016, H = 2017, J = 2018, K = 2019, L = 2020, M = 2021, N = 2022, P = 2023, R = 2024, S = 2025, T = 2026, V = 2027, W = 2028, X = 2029, Y = 2030 Example: According to the above mentioned VIN, the vehicle was manufactured in January 2014. TATA MOTORS VIN Characters: 17 (MAT******B*K*****) Method: 10th character - YEAR of Manufacture (B) refer above VIN 12th character - MONTH of Manufacture (K) refer above VIN Year Codes: A= 2010, B = 2011, C = 2012, D = 2013, E = 2014, F = 2015, G = 2016, H = 2017, J = 2018, K = 2019, L = 2020, M = 2021, N = 2022, P = 2023, R = 2024, S = 2025, T = 2026, V = 2027, W=2028, X = 2029, Y = 2030 Month Codes: A = JAN, B = FEB, C = MAR, D = APR, E = MAY, F = JUN, G = JUL, H = AUG, J = SEP, K = OCT, N = NOV, P = DEC Example: According to the above mentioned VIN, the vehicle was manufactured in October 2011. MITSUBISHI MOTORS INDIAVIN Characters: 17 (MA7******DC******) Method:10th character - YEAR of Manufacture (D) refer above VIN 11th character - MONTH of Manufacture (C) refer above VIN Year Codes: A = 2010, B = 2011, C = 2012, D = 2013, E = 2014, F = 2015, G = 2016, H = 2017, J = 2018, K = 2019, K = 2019, L = 2020, M = 2021, N = 2022, P = 2023, R = 2024, S = 2025, T = 2026, V = 2027, W = 2028, X = 2029, Y = 2030 Month Codes:A = JAN, B = FEB, C = MAR, D = APR, E = MAY, F = JUN, G = JUL, H = AUG, J = SEP, K = OCT, L = NOV, M = DEC Example: According to the above mentioned VIN, the vehicle was manufactured in March 2013 MAHINDRA & MAHINDRAVIN Characters: 17 (MA1******C*D*****) Method:10th character - YEAR of Manufacture (C) refer above VIN 12th character - MONTH of Manufacture (D) refer above VIN Year Codes:A = 2010, B = 2011, C = 2012, D = 2013, E = 2014, F = 2015, G = 2016, H = 2017, J = 2018, K = 2019, L = 2020, M = 2021, N = 2022, P = 2023, R = 2024, S = 2025, T = 2026, V = 2027, W = 2028, X = 2029, Y = 2030 Month Codes:, A = JAN, B = FEB, C = MAR, D = APR, E = MAY, F = JUN, G = JUL, H = AUG, J = SEP, K = OCT, L = NOV, M = DEC Example: According to the above mentioned VIN, the vehicle was manufactured in April 2012. HYUNDAI MOTOR COMPANY VIN / Chassis Number Characters: 19 (MAL******D********F) Method:10th character - Model YEAR (D) refer above VIN 19th character - MONTH of Manufacture (F) refer above VIN Year Codes:A = 2010, B = 2011, C = 2012, D = 2013, E = 2014, F = 2015, G = 2016, H = 2017, J = 2018, K = 2019, L = 2020, M = 2021, N = 2022, P = 2023, R = 2024, S = 2025, T = 2026, V = 2027, W = 2028, X = 2029, Y = 2030 Month Codes:A = JAN, B = FEB, C = MAR, D = APR, E = MAY, F = JUN, G = JUL, H = AUG, J = SEP, K = OCT, L = NOV, M = DEC Example: According to the above mentioned VIN, the vehicle was manufactured in June 2013. SKODA AUTO INDIA VIN Characters: 17 (TMB**C***D*******) Method:6th character - MONTH of Manufacture (C) refer above VIN 10th character- YEAR of Manufacture (D) refer above VIN Month Codes:A = JAN, B = FEB, C = MAR, D = APR, E = MAY, F = JUN, G = JUL, H = AUG, J = SEP, K = OCT, L = NOV, M = DEC Year Codes: A = 2010, B = 2011, C = 2012, D = 2013, E = 2014, F = 2015, G = 2016, H = 2017, J = 2018, K = 2019, L = 2020, M = 2021, N = 2022, P = 2023, R = 2024, S = 2025, T = 2026, V = 2027, W = 2028, X = 2029, Y = 2030 Example: According to the above mentioned VIN, the vehicle was manufactured in March 2013. VOLKSWAGEN INDIA VIN Characters: 17 (WVWB10***C*******) Method:4th character - MONTH of Manufacture (B) refer above VIN 5th & 6th character - Production Year (10) refer above VIN 10th character - Model Year (C) refer above VIN Month Codes:A = JAN, B = FEB, C = MAR, D = APR, E = MAY, F = JUN, G = JUL, H = AUG, J = SEP, K = OCT, L = NOV, M = DEC Year Codes:10 = 2010, 11 = 2011, 12 = 2012, 13 = 2013, 14 = 2014, 15 = 2015, 16 = 2016, 17 = 2017, 18 = 2018, 19 = 2019, 20 = 2020, 21 = 2021, 22 = 2022, 23 = 2023, 24 = 2024, 25 = 2025, 26 = 2026, 27 = 2027, 28 = 2028, 29 = 2029, 30 = 2030 Model Year Codes:A = 2010, B = 2011, C = 2012, D = 2013, E = 2014, F = 2015, G = 2016, H = 2017, J = 2018, K = 2019 Example: According to the above mentioned VIN, the vehicle was manufactured in February 2010, model year 2012. FIAT INDIA VIN Characters: 20 (MCA**************GFZ) Method:18th character - MONTH of Manufacture (G) refer above VIN 19th & 20th character - YEAR of Manufacture (FZ) refer above VIN Month Codes:A = JAN, B = FEB, C = MAR, D = APR, E = MAY, F = JUN, G = JUL, H = AUG, J = SEP, K = OCT, L = NOV, M = DEC Year Codes:8Z = 2030, 7Z = 2029, 6Z = 2028, 5Z = 2027, 4Z = 2026, 3Z = 2025, 2Z = 2024, 1Z = 2023, AZ = 2022, BZ = 2021, CZ = 2020, DZ = 2019, EZ = 2018, FZ = 2017, GZ = 2016, HZ = 2015, JZ = 2014, KZ = 2013, LZ = 2012, MZ = 2011, NZ = 2010, QZ & PZ = 2009 Example: According to the above mentioned VIN, the vehicle was manufactured in July 2017. TOYOTA INDIAVIN Characters: 22 (MBJ**************0510) Method:19th & 20th character - MONTH of Manufacture (05) refer above VIN 21st & 22nd character - YEAR of Manufacture (10) refer above VIN Month Codes:01 = JAN, 02 = FEB, 03 = MAR, 04 = APR, 05 = MAY, 06 = JUN, 07 = JUL, 08 = AUG, 09 = SEP, 10 = OCT, 11 = NOV, 12 = DECYear Codes:10 = 2010, 11 = 2011, 12 = 2012, 13 = 2013, 14 = 2014, 15 = 2015, 16 = 2016, 17 = 2017, 18 = 2018, 19 = 2019, 20 = 2020, 21 = 2021, 22 = 2022, 23 = 2023, 24 = 2024, 25 = 2025, 26 = 2026, 27 = 2027, 28 = 2028, 29 = 2029, 30 = 2030 Example: According to the above mentioned VIN, the vehicle was manufactured in May 2010. MARUTI SUZUKI VIN Characters: 17 (MA3******HA******) Method:11th character - MONTH of Manufacture (H) refer above VIN10th character - YEAR of Manufacture (A) refer above VINMonth Codes:A = JAN, B = FEB, C = MAR, D = APR, E = MAY, F = JUN, G = JUL, H = AUG, J = SEP, K = OCT, L = NOV, M = DECYear Codes:Y=2030, X=2029, W=2028, V=2027, T=2026, S=2025, R=2024, P=2023, N=2022, M=2021, L=2020, K=2019, J=2018, H=2017, G=2016, F=2015, E=2014, D=2013, C=2012, B=2011, A=2010, 9=2009, 8=2008, 7=2007, 6=2006, 5=2005 Example: According to the above mentioned VIN, the vehicle was manufactured in August 2010. RENAULT INDIA VIN Characters: 17 (MEE******AA******)Method:10th character - YEAR of Manufacture (A) refer above VIN11th character - MONTH of Manufacture (A) refer above VIN Year Codes:A = 2010, B = 2011, C = 2012, D = 2013, E = 2014, F = 2015, G = 2016, H = 2017, J = 2018, K = 2019, L = 2020, M = 2021, N = 2022, P = 2023, R = 2024, S = 2025, T = 2026, V = 2027, W = 2028, X = 2029, Y = 2030 Month Codes:1 = January, 2 = February, 3 = March, 4 = April, 5 = May, 6 = June, 7 = July, 8 = August, 9 = September, A = October, B = November, C = December Example: According to the above mentioned VIN, the vehicle was manufactured in October 2010. NISSAN/DATSUN INDIA VIN Characters: 17 (MDH******AA******)Method:10th character - YEAR of Manufacture (A) refer above VIN11th character - MONTH of Manufacture (A) refer above VINYear Codes:A = 2010, B = 2011, C = 2012, D = 2013, E = 2014, F = 2015, G = 2016, H = 2017, J = 2018, K = 2019, L = 2020, M = 2021, N = 2022, P = 2023, R = 2024, S = 2025, T = 2026, V = 2027, W = 2028, X = 2029, Y = 2030Month Codes:1 = January, 2 = February, 3 = March, 4 = April, 5 = May, 6 = June, 7 = July, 8 = August, 9 = September, A = October, B = November, C = December Example: According to the above mentioned VIN, the vehicle was manufactured in October 2010. FORD INDIA VIN Characters: 17 (MAJGXX****KG*******)Ford India uses a pattern that repeats every 4 years. That means the 2005-2008 pattern repeats for 2009-2012 (and so on).Method: (Use the chart below for reference)11th character - YEAR of Manufacture (K) refer above VIN 12th character - MONTH of Manufacture (G) refer above VIN Anyone having Jeep, MG and KIA VIN details can mention them in the comments section in the above written format.
  2. Received form 35 and NOC from SBI on 06 Feb 2021. I was happy that loan closed but next challenge was how to contact RTO of hypothecation removal. Searched on internet and there was mixed response. Contacted few agents, they quoted me charges ranging from 1200 to 2500 based on how urgent we need it. But decided to give a try by myself. Searched on net and found below link, https://www.transport.telangana.gov.in/html/registration-hptermination.html Once you will click it, it will redirect to other link shown as below https://tgtransport.net/tgcfstonline/Registration/RegistrationOnline.aspx?Trans=HAT click on Hypothecation/ Hire Purchase/ Lease Termination If you have original RC then click on YES. Then below window will be open Once you will type above details, in next window you will get your full details. I was not sure whose number to be typed at financer mobile number i typed mine alternate number and it worked 😆. Once click you will be directed to slot booking window (image only for ref) Click on available slot. Once that is done you will be asked to pay charges. (image just for ref) fees is around 635. Take print out of it (important) Once all done take below document to respective RTA. Below documents required 1. Original RC 2. Printout of slot booking form 3. Form 35, 2 nos (original) 4. NOC from bank (original) 5. Valid insurance (Xerox) 6. Aadhar (Xerox) 7. One small polythene pouch to keep original RC in it. At RTA they are charging Rs 5. And for printout it is Rs 10 also keep below doc in case they want (not asked to me) 1. PUC Xerox 2. PAN card Xerox 3. Residence proof In my case it was RTA Rangareddy. Mine slot booking was on 12 Feb 2021 01:40 to 01:50 Reached there around 12. Agents started chasing me. But i decided not to pay attention. Went to window No 4. Waited for 10 min. Officer took my documents checked for 30 seconds and issued me slip. Asked me to go to window 6 for photo. Went to window 6 waited for 10 min. officer took my slip, done some typing on screen took my photo and signature. And told me that RC will be received via post. Everything done in 30 min of time, no agent. Mine application is approved on same day. Now waiting for RC😏
  3. Hi guys, Mid of April month, I am Planning to have a Shirdi trip from Lingampally(Hyderabad), Route : Lingampally - Naldurg - Tuljapur - Terkhed - Jamkhed - Ahmednagar - Shirdi return with same route. Would like to know the current road condition of the above route. Thanks, Rajagopal
  4. I am planning a trip to GOA from HYD by car next weekend. So anyone can suggest me the best route for that? I am planning to leave around 2:00 AM from Hyderabad to Goa which way i have to take?
  5. Hyderabad to Sikkim road trip : Four BTech friends, Proper reunion after a decade. Crossed two borders, (Nepal and Bhutan) Drove around 5.5k kilometres. Hanging around with old friends and saying "Remember when..."(15 days of memories) Trusted steed Menu Day 1 : Hyderabad to Vishakapatnam Day 2 : Vishakapatnam to Puri Day 3: Puri to Kharagpur Day 4:Kharagpur to Malda
  6. I did not travelled for three months and the traveller in side me is thirsty. Few plans to West Maharastra and Goa with friends did not materialised. I had also planned a trip to Chitrakote falls with family friends but they were afraid of travelling in Chattisgarh. It was late night of 27th July, 2018 Friday and I was desperate to go to some place. I asked my wife and son Shall we go to Chitrakote Waterfalls? They said yes. Rough route plan was with me. No bookings for night stay made. Got up early on 28-07-2018 Saturday and started from Home by 5.30 AM and reached Warangal by 7.30 AM. I know the route up to Eturunagaram before Bhogatha and I know very well that once we cross Warangal, it is difficult to get any food. So we had Breakfast at Hotel Ashoka, Hanmakonda, once my favorite. Entered in to Mulugu road (from here entire roads are 2 lane) by 8.30 AM. Our original thought was to come back in the same route from Chitrakote but it proved wrong. Initially we thought of seeing Bhogatha falls in return journey so as to reach Chitrakote early. By 10.30 we were at Bhogatha Falls cross road and its only 1 Km from there. We thought lets have a look without wasting much time. It proved to be good decision.
  7. Can you please share the best route from Hyderabad to Jaipur by car.
  8. Dear ALL, I am planning to travel to tirupati from Hyderabad by in a automatic car. Don't want to take bad roads. Can anyone please suggest the best route?
  9. Hyderabad to Tadoba route: Hyderabad to Tadoba forest route is a mix of 4-lane and 2-lane route. First leg of the journey is Hyderabad to Adilabad on NH7 via Nirmal. It is a beautiful 4-lane toll road one can easily maintain 100 km/hr for the first 300 Kilometers. Adilabad to Wani is mix of good and bad roads. Once you cross Wani you need to change the route depending on the gate you are planning to visit. Following are the list of Gates available. Entry Gates :: Tadoba Tiger Reserve Khutvanda Kolara (Second best option) Mohurli (Famous gate) Navegaon Pangdi Zahri (Kolsa) Note : Tuesday is a Holiday (subjected to change) Tadoba will be closed during monsoon i.e 1st July to 15th October (subjected to change) Best Route :Hyderabad to Mohurli gate Tadoba (Famous gate) Hyderabad --> Kamareddy --> Nirmal --> Adilabad -->Pandharkawada -->Karanji --> Wani --> Chandrapur --> Mohurli gate Best Route :Hyderabad to Kolara (Second option) Hyderabad --> Kamareddy --> Nirmal --> Adilabad -->Pandharkawada -->Karanji-->Wani--> Warora --> Chimur --> Kolara gate Note: Routes and Gates are always confusing around the forest arear. Even though you use Google maps make sure to recheck with locals
  10. Distance: 120 kms. Road condition: Excellent (upto Zaheerabad) You divert from the highway towards Chincholi forest reserve near the Mahindra factory exit. The road is a single lane road and through the farms. We started from Miyapur around 7 AM in 3 cars. Packed all the food and water. Note: Be sure to carry your shoes as there would be a short trek to reach the banks of the lake. I will let the pictures do the talking. The road towards the Chincholi forest after getting down the NH 65 The weather was good as the sun shone gently on us that morning The entry gate of the Chincholi forest was very welcoming Though it was a mud track beyond the gate, the drive was smooth and fun. The track will is pretty narrow to just fit in 1 car at a time Our first pit stop was a small temple enroute amidst the Chincholi forest
  11. Hyderabad to Koilsagar - Overnight BBQ camp under the stars - Report When: April 22nd 2017 Where: Koilsagar reservoir Distance: 140 Kilometres Objective : A small gathering with all the 'India-drive men' at the banks of the Koilsagar reservoir for an overnight camp besides Barbecue under the beautiful night skies to study the star trials. Destination description: Koilsagar is a reservoir which stretches across Peddavaagu (A minor tributary of river the Krishna). The western stretch of this picturesque reservoir is surrounded by hills making it a beautiful treat to eyes both during sunrise and sunset. Hyderabad to Koilsagar route: Hyderabad --> Jadcherla --> Devarkadra --> Koilsagar project Video: Participants: 1) Hyundai Grand i10 - Sugandhar 2) Hyundai Grand i10 - Pinaki 3) Maruti Suzuki Swift - Anand 4) Hyundai i20 Elite - Ravi Teja 5) Hyundai i20 Elite - Jagadish 6) Hyundai i20 Elite - Chinmai 7) Volkswagen Polo - Ashwin 😎 Volkswagen Polo - Raghunandan 9) Hyundai Accent Viva - Surya 10) Ford Figo Aspire - Bhargav 11) Maruti Suzuki Swift Dezire - Vishu 12) Mahindra Thar - Ravi Teja 13) Maruti Suzuki Brezza - Srinivas 14) Ford Ecosport - Vinay 15) Ford Ecosport - Varun 16) Maruti Suzuki SX4 - Tej 17) Hyundai Verna - Madhavi 18) Hyundai Verna - Nishant 19) Hyundai Creta - Sagar 20) Mahindra XUV 500 - Rahul 21) Honda Civic - Saran 22) Honda Civic - Gowtham 23) Toyota Corolla Altis - Praveen
  12. Road trip experience in a Tesla Sharing a road trip experience in EV with Pros and Cons when compared with ICE cars. This is not a leisure travel, We had to go on a work trip from SF to LA. I tried to capture as many details as possible. Car Specifications: Range: 600 kilometers per charge (EPA) 0-100: 3.8 Seconds Top speed is limited to 250km/hr Supports upto Level-3 charging : 250KW/hr Auto Pilot Will be sharing more information on Tesla Super chargers in the upcoming posts A day before the trip Planning: Road trips in electric cars need some planning when compared to traditional(ICE) cars. STEP 1: You can use Tesla website to plan your trip, Select the car that you are planning to take on a drive Advantages with Tesla is super charging network Check out the website for fun : https://www.tesla.com/trips SF to LA has close to 10+ Tesla super chargers(Distance : 600+ kilometers) STEP 2: Calculate total charging time required, you can check Tesla website to understand your trip plan Total charging time required on a 616 kilometers trip is 55 minutes Details given above are in ideal conditions: 90% charge before you start, follow speed limits, no opposite wind, no cold weather(below 0C), no snow storm etc In real world, range varies, this is similar to our ARAI mileage Tesla calculates/displays range based on EPA(ARAI), add 15~20% range error All the Tesla Chargers are located close to some of the best food courts/restrooms Total saving for the trip when compared with gas cars is 52$
  13. India-Drive Stickers available online Set of 3 stickers Two high quality dome stickers "DREAM DRIVE DISCOVER" (Yellow and Black); SIZE : 3x3 inches One high quality poly-carbonate "Roadtrippin'" sticker (Orange); SIZE : 7x3 inches 100% Weather proof and long lasting Price is Inclusive of taxes + Shipping charges) Shipping time: within 7 working days Shopping link
  14. Hi All, I have completed the Hyderabad to Goa track yesterday. Let me split the roads into different sections to give clear information. Best route to Goa? It always varies from year to year. Best route: Hyderabad > Zaheerabad > Humnabad > Gulbarga > Vijayapura > Bagalkot > Belgaum > Dodamarg > Goa Hyderabad to Humnabad: Excellent 4-lane road Humnabad to Gulbarga : Smooth 2-lane road, you can take Gulbarga outer ring road to skip the traffic Gulbarga to Belgaum : Smooth 2-lane road, some of it has a toll Belgaum to Goa: Roads are not so great blame the recent rains, few patches are pathetic. Tip: Humnabad to Belgaum road looks same all the way, Food: Zaheerabad Gulbarga Belgaum People using Google maps, split your route into different sections Section 1: Hyderabad to Gulbarga, it should be via Zaheerabad Section 2: Gulbarge to Belgaum Section 3: Belgaum to Goa, make sure you put exact location in Goa (example : Anjuna beach) Drive time Total drive time including breaks is 14~15 hours, Don't get fooled by google times. Lots of village traffic followed by ghat section, will eat away your time. Worst route is via Raichur, completely avoid it. Few clicks from the drive.
  15. December long weekend getaway plans from Hyderabad? 1. Hyderabad to Goa : Nothing can beat December vibes of Goa No of days : 4/5 days Road condition: Average Latest road condition : https://www.trifod.com/index.php?/topic/1505-hyderabad-to-goa-road-trip-nov-2020/ 2. Hyderabad to Ooty : (4 /5 days) The queen of hill stations No of days : 4/5 days Road condition: Excellent 3. Hyderabad to Chikmagalur : (4 days) The queen of hill stations No of days : 4/5 days Road condition: Excellent 4. Hyderabad to Maredumilli: Winter is the best time to visit No of days : 4 days Road condition: Good
  16. I am planning to travel with family from Goa to Agra by Car. Please advise the best possible route as I hear that roads via MP are not safe and road conditions are bad. Travelled from Bangalore to Goa - the roads were excellent ! Possible travel routes which I could figure out were : 1) Goa - Mumbai - Udaipur - Agra 2) Goa - Pune - Vadodra - jaipur - Agra if anyone has travelled recently - please share your experience and advice.
  17. List of places to visit around Hyderabad which are under 100 kilometers Miss road trips/traveling during COVID times? Here are the list of weekend getaways around Hyderabad which can be done without any outside contact. Pack your breakfast/lunch/water plan to start early in the morning from Hyderabad visit and place come back by afternoon. 1. Kondapochamma sagar reservoir: 2. GottamGutta Forest Hike: 3. Singur Dam: 4. Vikarabad Forest: 5. Bhongir Fort: 6. Rachakonda Fort: 7. Ranganayaka sagar reservoir: 8. Pocharam wildlife and reservoir: 9. Bidar Fort:
  18. Total Distance Travelled: 160kms up & down. Time Taken: 7.5 hrs. Road Condition: Excellent. Vehicle: Ford Freestyle Titanium 1.5 TDCi. Route: Gannavaram – Prakasam Barrage – Gollapudi – Lanco Circle – Kondapalli village – Lanco Circle – VGA – HYD NH – Kondapalli forest ghat – Kondapalli fort – HYD – VGA NH – Mulapadu village – Mulapadu Butterfly Park. It was the 28th day of August. More than 6 months locked in our homes. Yes, the lockdown has been lifted. But the virus is till there. Three visits to my hometown, Rajahmahendravaram / Dowaleswaram and Ramachandrapuram but the itch to explore a place and drive to a beautiful forest where I and my Ford always love spending time was still there. I was at Vijayawada, the city my father is currently working as a DGM at AAI. Never been to any nearby place but always heard about the place Kondapalli. Though visiting my all-time favorite Maredumilli forest, Pamuleru Vagu the 3rd time was my initial plan, couldn’t convince my parents since we were planning to Hyderabad very soon. So, What next? Just a quick check on the route from VGA-Kondapalli opening Google Maps and checking the best viewpoint using Google Earth. The next day, it was 29th of August. Gannavaram – Kondapalli village – Kondapalli fort via Kondapalli forest. We had a delicious lunch at home in Gannavaram, checked my newly fitted Hella Comet 500 and a gentle press on the push start button depressing the clutch, my Ford 1.5 TDCi roared to life. It took us 2hrs to reach Kondapalli village which is 45kms away from my house at Gannavaram. It was 3.07PM and we quickly stopped at Kondapalli toys store to gift a nice Kondapalli toy to our family doc and did a quick shopping for our newly renovated house at Hyderabad. While my parents were busy shopping at the store, I had a quick look inside the store, wondered at the beauty of our native Telugu artisans work and then it was time for me to have a look at the Gmaps for further planning. A short drive to the other side of the hill, we in no time entered Kondapalli Forest ghat. What a feeling! Driving on the ghats after almost a year. Maredumilli being the last. It’s a 6.9km drive through the forest ghat road and it took us almost 20mins to reach to the Fort after a good drive on the extremely narrow and scenic ghat road. The road condition was excellent. Doordarshan TV towers situated at the top of the hill is a major advantage and the only reason for the best road condition. We spent a good 1.5hrs time at Kondapalli forest. While my parents were busy exploring the fort, I was double busy exploring the forest and clicking some beautiful pictures of my mile muncher Ford and enjoying the views sipping a chilled sprite in the hot afternoon. It was 5.15 in the evening, it’s getting dark and we were already getting late to catch-up for our last leg of journey, drive through the Mulapadu forest road in the return leg to home. We hopped into our car after sipping hot tea and at a small shop near the fort feeling sad looking at the beauty being littered by some people. Kondapalli fort - Mulapadu forest – Gannavaram via Mulapadu forest road. (ONE NEEDS TO TAKE THE MULAPADU-GADDAMANUGU ROAD TO VISIT BUTTERFLY PARK AND FOREST WHICH IS NOT SHOWN IN GOOGLE MAPS) We started at 5.45 Pm at Kondapalli fort, a good downhill drive covering the entire 6.9kms but this time in 30mins avoiding all the idiotic bikers ricing on rice bikes and Activas, we reached the VGA-HYD NH with a small scratch on the rear right door caused by an old man speeding in his Dzire without even honking on a curve. “Be gentle on my curves” must be followed everywhere! We reached Mulapadu village and the time was already 6.15PM, seeing no chance of driving through the Mulapadu forest road to Gannavaram which was the original plan since it was already dark and the road was full of truck traffic, I settled for a few pictures near the Mulapadu Butterfly Park arch and Mulapadu forest entry, bought some beautiful plants in the nearby nursery, bid goodbye to the beautiful place looking at the forest road entry planning in my mind to execute the incomplete final leg of journey all alone, we drove back to Gannavaram. I know the story is incomplete unfortunately. But hopefully I’ll be back really soon with a part 2. Until then, Drive Safe, Stay Safe.
  19. **Route update NH65/ NH16/ NH14** Distance -1672 kms Total time 26 hrs Standstill time : 1 hr 17 min ( includes breaks + refueling ) Source : Hyderabad Destination: Asansol Vehicle - Duster AWD. Start : Friday 9pm . Sept 2020 End - Saturday 11pm Sept 2020 Toll charges - 1600 ( Paytm fastag discounts ) Diesel - 119 litres Average diesel rate at all states ~ 80 Road conditions - (9pm - 1am ) Hyderabad to Vijaywada - nh65 , first 60 kms can get irritating if you drive during daylight and traffic. Post that tarmac is smooth and you can make up time. ( 1am -6 am) Vijaywada - Vizag - Post Tuni till southern Chilka - lots of diversions but they are in a better shape from what I had seen during the last Hyderabad - East Bhutan trip. 33kms before entering Vizag we took the Bypass , it was scenic and scarcely busy although we crossed it at 5:30am . ( 6am -2pm ) Vizag - Chilka - Bhubaneswar : Super scenic + great road. Chilka - Bhubaneswar : Major diversions but manageable with mild traffic from adjoining towns. ( 2pm - 6pm ) Bhubaneswar - Kharagpur : great road ,no issues but tarmac has major undulations , cars with lower GC will bottom out, saw a swift dzire break it's left fog lap. Just be careful. But majorly scenic. ( 6pm -11pm ) Kharagpur - Bishnupur - Raniganj -Asansol : Smooth tarmac, lots of towns / villages enroute, we did it at night, that saved a lot of time. Keep an eye for weak bridges. A brigde we used often for past few years was shattered by an overwhelmed river. Passes and URLs - Orissa - https://covid19.odisha.gov.in/ ( 1 pass ) AP - http://spandana1.ap.gov.in/Registration/onlineRegistration.aspx ( 2 passes, entry and exit ) WB- 8017845555 ( send a ping via whatsapp, then respond accordingly) We were not stopped at any state border for checking passes in the 26 hours of driving. Note: please research about the days of lockdown in AP/OD/WB, authorities are very strict. Picture - A mandatory selfie with Kashfool. aka - Saccharum Spontaneum Those who are planning to drive excercise caution and safety. Have a happy and a safe trip. Source : Aritra Ray
  20. Hello Team members, Hope to get the answer I am looking for. It has been few months since train facilities were cancelled. I had hoped that they would resume soon, but cant see it happen in next few months also. My parents stay in a small nearby town near Kolkata, I had hoped to reach to them during covid times. My inlaws are staying with me luckily , they had come to our place before covid times. During such time, any person would want to be safe and secure in one place. So I am hoping to drive the Mumbai-Kolkata stretch. Reason of not taking a flight is because of my son(he is a six year old labrador) and I basically take him everywhere. Obviously I cant leave him, I tried to enquire on flight facilities for dog. But Air India didnt give me much information on that, on top of that I found out dogs actually die during such transit(if pilots donot maintain right pressure in luggage area). Second option would be Train, but unfortunately that wouldnt be available for next few months. So I am left with driving, it would be difficult drive since including my dog we would be 5 members in a swift-vxi car. Me and wife have driven many such long distance(both can drive), for example we came from Delhi to Mumbai by road, because of our dog. But during normal times, we would have easily charted out an itinerary but these are not normal times. Driving from Mumbai to Kolkata itself is a long route, on top of that we have covid related issue and then we also have a dog. So if possible can the team members chart out a plan for us to drive through. I am willing to take three pit stop on the way and willing to take Via Hyderabad route, because I am not so positive on Nagpur-Sambalpur road. We would require help on pitstops, restaurants, restroom, hotels and stay. If anyone can help please do help us. **Most importantly I need information on pass** I got some information from here, but not sure if this is the write infor. https://blog.savaari.com/covid-travel-pass/ 1st day - Mumbai to Hyderabad 2nd day - Hyderabad to Vishakapatnam 3rd day - Vizag to Puri 4th day - Puri to Hooghly
  21. Hello Guys, We always used to travel Hyderabad to Bangalore by car, it was very nice travelling experience. 4-lane highway NH44, pretty good roads with lot of foody options on route. But the toll tax is on the expensive side, around RS: 680/- one side. Airport to airport journey hours is just 6hrs. Once i tried travelled on bike (discover 150F) it was successful ride and I am very happy with the trip. So car vs bike on Bangalore highway are completly two different experiences. Which one would you prefer?
  22. Graciaas!! So, you got the shiny new car which is eager to hit the road! But wait, what about the permanent registration? You can always rely upon your dealer to this favour, of course against some money, but you can save few hundred to thousand bucks if can do it yourself. In this write up I would like to share my experience of car registration in Kondapur , Hyderabad. So, first thing first, what are the papers/documents required? Form 20 (In Duplicate if you have Finance and signed by the Finance company/bank) Form 21 provided by the dealer Form 22 provided by the vehicle Manufacturer Photocopy of a valid Insurance Certificate Tax invoice from the dealer Temporary Registration Certificate Life Tax Receipt Photo ID Proof (Govt provided) Address Proof (Ration Card, Electricity Bill, Passport, BSNL Telephone Bill...) Aadhar Card PAN Card. Just in front of the first counter.. as on 18.08.2015 How do I prepare myself, how to deal with RTO officers? Well, RTO officers are very friendly here in Kondapur. You just need to be well informed and all the documents should be perfect. Some people around there are really helpful (personally we got help from a stranger!), so don't worry, just do the below things before you head to RTO for permanent registration of your brand new car. Verify if you have all the copies of the documents mentioned above. Carry a pen, small pencil & eraser. You need to sign on form 20 at 2-3 places (IIRC) and do a pencil trace.(eraser is , in case if you could not do the pencil trace properly.) Refer your owner's manual or ask the dealer where the Chassis number is punched or engraved properly on the body. Usually there is a plate provided which has the chassis number. But some car is provided VIN no. or chassis number in more than one place. Find out which one can do the pencil trace. You need to do that on Form 20(IIRC) wherever RTO officer asked to do so. Please practice couple of times on a A4 paper so that you can do the same smartly over there without wasting your valuable time! check yourself whether you can comfortably reach this place and take pencil trace of the number Remember, chassis number should be visible properly on the required papers. It’s always better to reach early to get familiar with the environment. 10.30 AM is the opening time, be there around 10 AM. You might even find some friendly agent who will verify the document order without a fee. Anything else? Valuable tips or something? Of course.. I am outta here! No worries. Just do take care of the following things while you made up you mind that you will DIY registration of your brand new car! Some people like me done full mat floor cover as soon as they get their new car. Its really good and helpful thing unless you know the chassis number is engraved below the full mat cover! Well, just check up where exactly the chassis number is engraved for pencil trace. Make sure you haven't covered the area with the full mat until the registration. In my case, I had done my full mat just a week after I got the car. I checked up for chassis number and found that chassis number is on the door panel of Grand i10 which is easy to do the pencil trace. But wait..kahani mein twist hai. the moment we started doing pencil trace to get the chassis number, we realised that it's not that much engraved. In Hyundai Grand i10 chassis number is properly engraved in the chassis itself, just pull the drive's seat to extreme back, you will find below to that the chassis number properly engraved for pencil trace and guess what.. I insisted to fix (semi-fix actually) the mat to the chassis (by adhesive) in order to avoid misplacing the mat while driving (which is good otherwise IMO). Hence, we had to cut the mat for that place & repair it again to get those precious letters & numbers!! Thankfully the guy dint charges a single penny for the cutting & repairing. I heard, some cars like Maruti have their chassis number engraved under the bonnet. Owner of those cars will not have tough time in this regard. I have seen in Honda Jazz, in the right side of the driver's seat, but again, if you cover it up, be prepared to cut it! So this type of car owners be careful. I Dint notice that, floor mat is covering the chassis number Take 3-4 copies of Form 20 from the dealer (or take photocopies) and get it endorsed from the finance banker. Extra copies will ensure keeping documents for every agency including you. Arrange all the set of documents in line with the RTO guideline at home, so that you will not block the queue at the RTO for setting up the docs. Better do not go on Fridays & Mondays to avoid rush Hmm.. reached early at RTO office. Whats next? After entering the RTO park your car in the designated place and come to the registration counter with papers/documents. It's on the right side after you entering the RTO office. You will find some Xerox shops etc. which are behind this counter. As you have already made your set of documents at home in the order specified in the list, just give it at the New Registration Counter. The clerk verifies the documents; he will guide you to put sign on 3-4 places on Form 20 or/& any other doc if required and ask you to put sign on a digital signature pad. He will issues a fee receipt after collecting the prescribed fee of Rs 635/- (Application Fee - Rs 200, Service Charge - Rs 200, Smart Card Fee - Rs 200, Postal Charges - Rs 35) and another 620/- or so for HSRP charges (High Security Registration Plate). Make sure only owner signs on the digital pad. After that you need to go the next counter in left side to join another queue for photographs, finger print & eye scan (This photo will appear on the RC). Then you need to go the vendor shop for HSRP (extreme left point if you stand before the counter), where you need to show the receipt of Rs 1235/-(approx) That vendor will give you the time & date when you need to come there again to fix the HSRP(After getting the Reg number), but before going there make sure to call him @ 9963908679, (please do cross verify the number again), Then you have to take the pencil trace of the Chassis number. If you have finance, then there will be two copies of Form 20, you have to take pencil trace on both the copies.(On the bottom edge of the first page of Form 20 IIRC, otherwise ask the inspector seating there). You bring all documents, receipts along with your car to the vehicle inspector who sits in the open small shed, beside a tree near the receipt counter. He will ask you or his chela to read out the chassis number while he verifies on the Form 20. Gives you a copy of the receipt and voila you have done with the registration process!! The entire process took us only 40-45 minutes (max an hour) and it is not at all difficult. The RC smart card will come to the address as mentioned in the RC by post.(You can get it by hand next day by giving 300/- to anybody from those Xerox shops behind the receipt counter; but I would suggest to take it through post) Your Registration number will be updated on the RTA website by the same day evening. You can search using your Temporary Registration Number. After a couple of days you visit RTO office again to fix the number plate (make a call before going), you need to show your HSRP receipt or tell your number, they will take out the number plates & ask you to put sign on their register (proof of received I guess) . They may ask you to give tips of 100/- to 200/-. Now it's up to you whether you will pay or not!! However, they had done the job perfectly. So, Finally our "white knight" is getting the number plate!! That's it.. Congratulations! Your car finally got the permanent number plate!! PS: The process mentioned here is as on 18.08.2015 ; Kindly visit RTO for any update in this regard.
  23. #One Baleno#6 Souls#One destination#tones of memories#Bucket list tick#Gandikota Belum caves Trip planning started 6 months before and it kept on changing. Finally accommodation booked and trip scheduled on 24.Jan.2020. Thanks to Ksk (Sathish) and Dishari for continuous guidance on route and stay. Car: Baleno ZETA CVT Members: 4 Adults and 2 kids Places visited: Gandikota & Belum caves. One can visit places like Owk reservoir, Yaganti temple, Orvakal rock garden based on time availability. Route taken: Hyd-Kurnool-Nandyal-Gandikota-Belum caves-Banaganapali-Betamcherla-Kurnool-Hyd Road conditions: - Hyd-Kurnool-Nandyal: Roads are good - Nandyal-Gandikota: Roads are good. 50 km before Gandikota roads are average to bad and passes through villages. - Gandikota-Belum caves-Banaganapali-Betamcherla-Kurnool : Roads are average and passes through villages. Once you touch NH40 then roads are good. - Kurnool-Hyd: Roads are good. - Route map provided for ref. Distance traveled: ~ 800 KM Toll charges (Fastag): Rs. 650 Petrol expanse: Rs. 3700 Difficulties: Trip was awesome, except Aarav (my son) fall sick on day of trip with viral fever. But throughout trip he supported us with his smile. The complete success of trip goes to him. At Gandikota you need to wear good shoes to walk on rocks along with comfortable cloths. Avoid it during summer & heavy rains. People with breathing and BP related issues should avoid Belum caves. Stay option at Gandikota: Option 1: Non AC tents Cost is Rs. 1000 per person with food on twin sharing basis. The only problem is during rainy season this will not be good. Also for common washroom, you need to travel 500 m. Option 2: AC tents Very costly around Rs. 3000 per person with food on twin sharing basis. Sometime even they charge Rs 3500. Tents without food charges will be Rs. 3000 on twin sharing basis. Need online booking via freakout. Washroom is attached to tent. Opion 3: AC rooms at Hariths resorts We found this good and reasonable. Per room cost is Rs 1600 from Mon-Wed and on Thur-Sun it will be Rs. 2000 (taxes extra). Rooms are good and 500 m away from site. Rooms being limited we need to book online via AP tourism website. Food options at Gandikota Only food option is Haritha resort (if you have not booked tents). We found food is average and can be manageable. We have carried electric cooker and prepared food by our self. Food options at Belum caves There is a small hotel available near to booking window. They serve cold drink, water and snacks. We found food is average and can be manageable. You can enjoy this trips in 2 days. I advise you to make it on weekdays as there will be less rush. For us it took 3 days as we are travelling with kids and we don’t want to drive in night and early mornings. Disclaimer: Not all of the photos are taken by me. Few are from my friends mobile. Photographic device: Poco f1 Oneplus 7T Canon 1300D Xiomi note 6 pro Beauty of place you can derived from photos.
  24. Planning: It was October 2016 when we started planning for a long road trip. It was my wife's idea of visiting a cold place (if possible, snow fall) in winter, and subsequently we ended up talking about Manali (obvious choice of transport being, ROAD ). Idea was shot down by colleagues and friends, saying 2200KM drive one-side is no joke. Having experience of driving 17 hours a day couple of times, I knew that 3-day drive to Manali was pretty much possible. When started planning, things started to look easy - one of the key aspect of this journey was choice of stops. Upon deciding stops, stay, and places to visit, there was no stopping. In general, I would love to have best possible weather when I hit the road (my usual search query on Google being "where is it raining in India?"). In this case, we knew that fresh snowfall would happen at most 4-5 times in entire season, and we finalized dates trusting Accuweather data. Places planned to visit: Manali, Shimla, and Auli (tentative). THE reason to travel: To witness snowfall (Yes, we did!) Dates: 20/01/2017 to 01/02/2017 (Based on weather prediction three months before) Drive: Ford Ecosport 1.5TDCi Number of people: 3 (Driver: Only Me! ) Preparation: Being very particular about vehicle maintenance, I got everything checked (also, 2nd service was due around the same time) a week before our drive. One major problem we previously faced was light throw from headlights (OSRAMs) - I finally decided to replace with with Philips X-treme Vision Plus H4 (+130%), and they are amazing! Protective clothing: 2 layered snow-proof jacket, thermals, multi-position headband, two layers of gloves (much needed at sub-zero temperatures). Medicines: Few strips each for headache, cough/cold, fever, indigestion, and vomiting. Food: Figured out that there won't be many restaurants (especially in MP and UP). Hence, carried home-made protein bars, instant-noodle packs, juices, etc. Other things carried: Mini air compressor, 2 umbrellas, hiking pole, whistle, and 25L jerry can (and funnel). Route and Itinerary (NH44 all the way, from Telangana till Punjab) 20 Jan: Hyderabad to Sagar (MP) 21 Jan: Sagar (MP) to Greater Noida 22 Jan: Greater Noida to Manali 22 - 26 Jan: Places around Manali 27 Jan: Manali to Shimla 28 - 29 Jan: Shimla 30 Jan: Shimla to Agra 31 Jan: Agra to Nagpur 1 Feb: Nagpur to Hyderabad Day-1: (Hyderabad to Sagar - 884KM) State: Telangana It was a key decision that we had to make about 1st stop, and the choice was between Chhindwara and Sagar (considering good places to stay). We were all super-excited the night before; woke up at 4am, and hit road by 4.30am. Roads were flawless till Adilabad, and roads turned ugly (not even bad) the moment we crossed Telangana border - it was stark difference, and a badly shaped bridge welcomed us in Maharashtra. State: Maharashtra Road construction was happening on NH44 (for betterment, I'd guess), and it was not so pleasant (at the same time, not eventful) driving in MH. We crossed Nagpur 1.15pm and stopped for lunch as soon as we entered MP. State: Madhya Pradesh Tarmac turned super smooth the moment we entered MP - driving on SH 547 was pleasant experience (we passed some hills in between). No wonder MP has some of the cleanest cities in the country - one could judge the same by looking at their roads. We crossed Chhindwara around 4.30PM, and reached destination (Sagar) by 7.45PM. We could already feel the cold that night (not so much, though); had dinner and called it a day. It was a great day overall (not eventful). It was relatively long day for us in the car (~900KM), and we intentionally front-loaded much of distance on day-1.
  25. It was February 2018, me and my father visited Malik Tata Bowenpally to enquire about Tata Tiago and Tata Tigor in our handsome shiny golden brown Honda City after a good leather upholstery polishing at Stunnerz. We we’re impressed by the car, the build quality and interiors, we felt it’ll be a good upgrade to my WagonR CNG which was showing its age after 3 years 65000 kms. We asked for a test drive and they couldn’t arrange. We were irritated by the sales team response and reluctance to sell their product. We stepped out. Fast it forward to August, my father who was driving my WagonR slightly brushed to the electricity pole in a narrow lane. The impact was small, but the damage was really huge. A thought to upgrade to a safer vehicle struck my father’s mind. Fast forward to November, we put our Wagon R on sale at OLX and sold it in 5 days for 3,25,000. Got to know the meaning of resale value. Booked Ford Freestyle after just one test drive. We were taken away by the car, it’s build quality, ruggedness, and not to forgot the punchy TDCi engine. Ford has always been my favourite brand, I always wanted to own it, drive it. And this time I got the opportunity, we wanted to book the car the very next day but being a Sunday it was delayed. Monday, after attending a club meet at my college, at around 3:00 PM I booked my car at Mody Ford Begumpet. It was Ford Freestyle ambient 1.5 TDCi oxford white which was booked and later upgraded to top of the line model Titanium 1.5 TDCi charcoal black. Dealership Experience: The delivery was done as promised in 5 days. Initially the dealership experience was really good. they treated us well, the car was delivered as promised and everything was good until I noticed what they have done. The dealership has given me 4 months old vehicle, which was lying in the stock yard without informing me and without giving any old stock discounts. Found it by decoding the VIN number. The old stock/first batch vehicle came with fixed rear headrests and the newer one which I was supposed to get according to Ford as I booked in November came with adjustable rear headrests. Multiple mails and calls to the dealership proved to be waste. After a week of follow up, a good member of the Ford Freestyle WhatsApp group forwarded me the mail IDs of Ford India top management. A mail to Mr. Anurag Mehrotra MD Ford India sorted out the issues and the dealer was ordered to replace the entire rear seat with the new ones. Experience with Ford India: I must say, the experience so far with Ford has been really good. Right from solving my issues with the dealer to addressing each and every minor issues in the vehicle for which Ford is known for. To be honest, Ford is not a reliable brand like the Maruti Suzuki, Honda or Toyota. It is known for those small yet really irritating glitches. But the way the company addresses the issues is what matters. And I must say, Ford outshines every other manufacturer in this department. We as a valued customer have the freedom to even talk to the bosses of Ford India and get the issue solved. Be it the General Manager of a dealership or Managing Director of the company. The mangers and general mangers (service) are always available on phone for our queries. Life With Ford It’s been 10 months since I bought the car and I’ve been to many road trips, explored many places, and done some really crazy things with it. So far So good. Stability, Steering Feel and Feedback, Braking, Ride Comfort, and Performance: The next month after buying the car we did a road trip to Vijayawada. Couldn’t go beyond 100 kmph as the vehicle isn’t supposed to go beyond 100 kmph before 2000 km checkup. while returning I touched 170 kmph effortlessly after 2000 km checkup at Laxmi Ford Vijayawada. No where I felt loosing the control of the car. After driving WagonR for 65000 kms this felt like a really big upgrade in terms of drivability and stability. The response from the steering was spot on. Though the brakes did not inspire confidence at last minute braking for the first 5000 kms of ownership because of over sensitive ABS now they are perfect. Crisp and spot on braking performance. Or dont know if I’m used to it. Ford Freestyle is built to tackle bad roads and those beautiful untouched, unexplored roads. This said, the ride quality will definitely be on the stiffer side making all those shocks on the bad roads creep in. We can feel the thud sound when the car goes over speed breaker, potholes even in very low speeds. The suspension is on the stiffer side making the car super stable during high speeds and super rough on the bad roads. Space is strictly adequate in the front row and strictly average at the rear and the boot. The driving position is commendable. We sit higher than many of the hatchbacks making us see the road clearly. The car sitting at a height of 190mm from the ground makes driving on worst roads a breeze. No worries of under body hits. The performance from the engine on offer is something else. It effortlessly touches 80 kmph in the second gear itself and 0-100 kmph in under 10 seconds making it one of the fastest car in India. This car even outshines VW Polo in terms of performance. This is the most economical, fun to drive car in India giving good fuel efficiency numbers. Even Ford EcoSport doesn’t offer the low end torque and that jump this car offers. Reason being same engine for a lighter car. Capabilities: Ford calls the Freestyle a Compact Utility Vehivle and in my opinion its justified. It is not just a raised hatch/hatch with cladding or hatchback in SUV cloths as claimed by few online forums. Having used this for almost a year, clocking 20,000 kms, going for some unexplored areas, I can confidently say that this means some serious business, built for a purpose, a very practice vehicle. If not for serious off-roading, this is made for serious travelling and to glide on those beautiful untouched roads... Safety: Ford is known for this. It’s always ahead of the other cars in the segment when it comes to giving safety features if not fancy features. 2 airbags ABS with EBD Reverse parking sensors Driver and passenger seat belt alarm is standard across all the varient in all the models of Ford Central Locking Speed sensing door locks Child safety locks Making it the most value for money varient. The top of the line varient Titanium comes with added features like TCS HLA ESP And the even premium varient the Titanium Plus comes with added features like 6 airbags SYNC3 system With all the above features. Road Trips: I’ve done many road trips in this 10 months. Multiple trips to Hyderabad-Vijayawada but there are few trips that standout, that tested my skills, that took me to places I’ve never thought I would. The first one being Hyderabad to Maredumilli This remains my favourite trip of all. This tested my skills on the ghat during heavy rains and low visibility, took me to a beautiful place called Pamulery Vagu inside the forest. It was fun driving this car in those ghats. Steering feel and feedback was really good and was spot on. This trip will be forever remembered. The engine sound coupled with cool breeze and nature sounds made this a really wonderful and memorable trip with my Ford Freestyle. Hyderabad to Yanam via Ramachandrapuram This place is really beautiful. I’ve been to Yanam in 2012 in our Swift Dzire. I was siting beside my father and was observing him cruising in that beautiful cool, rainy weather. I was 16 back then. Learning driving from my father in our colony roads. I was amazed by the way it cruised, clicked many pictures in my father’s Galaxy S3. I couldn’t know more about the place. All I knew was the beach and the beautiful Jesus statue. Nothing beyond that. This is 2019 and I was on the wheel with my father sitting beside me and my Sony A6000 DSLR in the rear seat to click the beautiful places. It was 4:30 in the morning, I fired the loud TDCi engine waking up others in my house at Ramachandrapuram. We hit the roads and it was all nostalgic. The roads were bad, full of potholes and very bad curves. This gave me a new experience to drive on those village roads full of potholes and truck traffic from the opposite direction with high beam. Made me explore Yanam and the nearby mangroves and getting to know the place beyond beach and of course the beautiful Jesus statue, reminded my father of his childhood and the hotel where he used to sometimes eat and now we having our breakfast which is still running with the same quality at Drakshramam. This also proved how beautiful my car is gliding over those big potholes with very loud and uncomfortable sounds in the cabin and zero underbody hits. making this another memorable road trip. Vijayawada to Hyderabad I’ve done multiple trips between Hyderabad-Vijayawada on our Honda City as well as Ford Freestyle as my father is posted there. But this will be remembered. This unexpected drive for few minutes under the railway bridge tested my knowledge on flood water driving, knowledge can be acquired by learning but not experience. And this kind of experience is very rare. This tests our skill, It’s a do or die situation. Drive well and come out of the pool or get stuck ruining your car permanently. The experience was all together a very different one. This kept me in a situation where It was all on me. No one to help me, guide me or drive the car. This proved the capabilities of ford Freestyle and my driving skills. The punchy low end torque never worried me or gave a feel of stalling. It never lost the grunt. I successfully came out of it which doubled my confidence in driving and my love towards the car. Accidents & Incidents It was 24th of April, 8:45 in the morning. I was driving towards Suchitra Junction to meet my father’s colleague and take my internship certificate which I forgot in her cabin the previous day. I tuned into 98.3 radio mirchi my favourite radio station and was just 5 minutes away from my home when the unexpected saddest thing happened. A construction truck which was coming from the opposite direction taking a 90 degree banged into my car’s rear third quater leaving a really bad damage. It was a hit and run case. Many villagers ran behind him but he fled away leaving me in utter grief. The impact was huge but the damage was small considering the impact. Did anyone remember this? “the impact was small, but the damage was really huge” “A thought to upgrade to a safer vehicle struck my father’s mind” and this proved to be the right choice, the safer vehicle. It was 31st of July, 3:30 in the evening, I was driving from Tellapur towards Kompally on ORR. An incident which taught me the meaning of hydro planning, made me realise the power of water and yet again made me fall in love with my car. It was raining, the road was good obviously because it’s the ORR a Hyderabadi drivers favourite, the road was empty and there’s a water pool that can be seen on the left most lane. A child in me touched triple digit speeds (100kmph) from 80kmph wanted to spill the water and went straight onto the waterlogged pool only to loose control over my car. The vehicle immediately lost traction, drifted towards the right, steering was out of my control for few seconds, I tried very hard to steer the car to the left keeping it in the lane and I succeeded. All thanks to the traction control that my car has. This taught me how much dangerous water can be and the force of water. Never after this incident I touched triple digit speeds during rains. To sum it up, Freestyle is a car that definitely puts a smile the drivers face. Particularly the TDCi. It’s rightly called a pocket rocket. Freestyle is not about luxury, its rugged, rough, not so comfortable when compared to the competition, the interiors are hard, the plastics are not placed well but as said before its lal about ruggedness and practicality. Once you are behind the wheel of a Ford you’ll forever be the fan of Ford. Srikrishna Bhavaraju A true Ford Lover
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