Auto Expo 2006 – The Largest Automotive Show in Asia, as described by the event organisers. I put it as window shopping some exotic pieces of machinery.
Me and Sohail were planning about going there for some days and finally I got a holiday on Saturday from office so could take some time out and go there. Sunday was also on cards but we thought it will be better to go on Saturday as Sunday is a holiday for all and a lot of crowd was expected. So woke up a little late as usual, instead woken up from a call from Sohail, he asked me to reach at his place at 1:00pm . Fast forward to 1:00pm I’m still at home. The reason? Lunch. So ate it in a rush and off I went to Sohail’s place. Took me around an hour and some 15 minutes to reach there, called Sohail to meet at McDonalds. He came after sometime, then we went off for Pragati Maidan. Looked for an auto rickshaw, got one after asking some 4-5 of them, all the morons refused to go by the meter tariff, but one accepted the meter tariff.
We reached the place, got the tickets and entered the place. Its a huge venue, ideal for events of this magnitude. We went to a food stall got some Dew and chips and started the journey. We entered the first hall in front of us, but to our surprise it was an auto parts section. Engine parts like pistons, crankshafts and other stuff were on display. So we got out of there, sipping Dew and munching the Lays. The next hall had more stuff than the engine parts, infact a lot more. There were some huge trucks and buses in that hall. One had tyres so huge even a Tata Safari would feel small. So not much to view there. We went to the next hall, it was more crowdy than the last one, so I figured that this must be having some good cars. I could see the Honda logo from the entrance so thought maybe this is the right place. Just as we entered the hall, it’s a very big one I tell you, I could see a very familiar car. I kept moving in that direction, and when it was clear what it was, I was so surprised, and didn’t believe at first. There was a V10 powered, 950bhp BAR 006!!! For those who still didn’t understand, BAR 006 is a Formula 1 car, of BAR team. I was really very happy to see a F1 car in front of my eyes. It was so close that I could touch it, didn’t touch it at that moment though, but will do before I go back to home. Back to the point. That car was magnificent, a very big car, with lots of carbon fiber bodywork. I explained some parts of the car to Sohail, the tyres were so wide, really a great car to look upon. We overheard two people talking, one said how much is that car for? Has it come to India? Jesus! Are they nuts or what! An F1 car for sale? That too in India!!! We couldn’t stop laughing. A memorable experience for me, to see a F1 Car so closely, quite lucky, or rather thanks to Honda, I could see a car so closely, which otherwise would have been impossible. Unless you are a certain Michael Schumacher ofcourse. Which ofcourse I’m not, so this was better. I wish I had a camera at that moment. Anyways we moved on, not before Sohail said that we will return back here before we go back. Next we saw the Accord, City ZX VTEC, and a hybrid car from Honda. Then we moved on to the Ford pavilion. There was their new arrival, Fiesta, nice car it is. But the crowd was a lot more next to the Fiesta pavilion. Wonder what it was we moved towards it. I could make it out from the crowd that it was a 2-door car. But as we made our way through the crowd, and to our amazement, it was a Mustang GT!!! A 300bhp V8 powered Mustang GT!!! Till now only place we saw it was Need for Speed Most Wanted! But this is too cool! The car is a real American Muscle car, with robust lines, and an awesome interior, the car was really a macho, masculine American automobile. Enough of drooling, save it for the other exotics we said. And we got out of this hall.
The next hall again was a auto parts one, so again nothing to see in it, and again we went to the other hall. This one had Suzuki, the 2-wheeler maker. It displayed the Indian offering, which were not we came for, so we kept on moving and then we saw a very familiar bulky motorbike, err…super bike I beg you pardon. It was the Suzuki GSX1300R, also known as the Hayabusa, the same one which was driven by John Abraham in the movie Dhoom. This bike is the quickest and fastest production motorcycle in the world. And trust me it’s a huge bike. It has a 1299 cc inline-4 engine typically rated between 150 and 180 bhp. A great bike to see. Next to it was the Suzuki GSX-R 1000, a smaller bike than the “Busa” but still packs a punch. Next was the Mitsubishi pavilion. It had the upcoming Cedia and the current Lancer. But the car which took my attraction was the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX. The legendry Rally Championship winning car, the Evolutions or colloquially known as the “Evo”, is a great car. My favorite no doubt, the evo is a practical car to own, not very expensive and the most importantly packs quite a punch. Wish I had one. Anyways again though will see it again before we leave. So then we entered the Yamaha corner. It had a Yamaha YZF-R1, Yamaha YFZ-R6but the bike which stole the show was the YZF-M1, yes the same bike which took him to two MotoGP World championships in 2004 & 2005. The bike had a huge ass, a very big tyre, must be atleast 16” wide. A wonderful bike it is. Once again I missed a camera so much. Then there was a simulator which allowed you to have a virtual experience of riding a superbike. Though nothing like the real stuff, but what the heck, you won’t be able to get one easily, so we though of having a go at it. But it was too crowdy and we couldn’t have got a chance to ride it, not atleast for another 45 minutes, so we decided to move on. We went to the Skoda corner and saw their current range, the Octavia, Superb, Octavia Combi, and a vintage car as well. Not much to see here, we moved ahead to other sections. We were coming out of a hall and then I saw a familiar ass, no not a girl’s, but a car instead, and one hell of a car. There was written Lamborghini on the back!!! Jesus Christ! I cried out in amazement. Hearing my cry, the man next to me said, “What’s there to Jesus Christ about, its just a Lamborghini.” Yea mister, tell me that when you drive one at 300kmph! Morons, don’t even think of what they are saying. So me and Sohail feasted our eyes on the big car, a big purple colored Lamborghini Gallardo, after all you don’t see a Lambo everyday, even though Lambo has recently appointed a dealer in India. So just as we though of moving ahead, we heard some music, a loud music, there was a Blaupunkt pavilion, with the speakers screaming in a loud volume, the speakers were very big and sexy, some good music it was making, and it occupied the whole boot of the Volkswagen. It also had a big amplifier along with it. Will hopefully get one is my car too eh? What’s the harm in dreaming at least. So then we moved ahead and saw some dance going on the little stage there. 4 girls were dancing. People were going gaga, idiots they were, instead turn around and have a look at that Lambo you fools. Girls you can see daily but not a Lambo. Anyways we too have a look on the 4 models and off we went from there. Our legs by this time were too tired.
Then the huge Maruti pavilion, with unsafest car of them all the Maruti 800. I call it a bare minimum car. Sad that my family too has one. But anyways, we kept watching other cars, a cut section of Swift. Then again there was a dance program at the Maruti stage. Is this an auto show? Bah!
Then we started to look for DC’s pavilion, DC If you don’t know is Dilip Chhabria, DC in short is his brand name. He is the biggest car designer in India. His famous works are the Tarzan car in the movie with the same name. He also designed an Aston Martin for the Aston Martin car company. A Great achievement. We then went to the Tata pavilion. There again was another exotic car, an Alfa Romeo, dunno the model which one was it. But the car was a great one. Had a big front bonnet, must be having a huge engine, but indeed a great looking car.
So we thought we had enough of feet bashing for a day, lets go home. But first for another time lets watch that F1 car, the Mustang GT, Lancer “Evo” and the Gallardo once again. So we saw them once again and started moving to the exit, but hey, that’s a familiar sound, it was Nitin, a TV anchor, I told about him to Sohail and went closer to have a look on the show. He was running a Ford sponsored show. Cracked nice jokes and made the evening a funny one. Then they showed some fashion parade, with some models cat walking on fusion music. Nice models they were.
We then went back to home. Didn’t find an auto rickshaw, so took a bus back to Sohail’s place, got down had some Burgers, Dew and then some ice cream, tired of the days walking, but all worth it. So I went back home. Recalling all the exotic pieces of machinery we saw over the day.