The last few decades have brought with them monumental changes in the way India drives; especially the last one – the decade of the automobile.
With the countless automotive blogs and columns mushrooming on social media and web domains alike, we simply could not resist coming up with our own something special for our readers and enthusiasts. We aim at doing things a bit differently and plan to come up with multiple forms of reads, reviews and stories not only on market trends and new product ranges, but also on the journey of automobiles in India from an embryonic industry in the early sixties to potentially becoming the sixth largest Automobile manufacturer in the world by 2015.
Car Industry in India
The love and passion for driving and riding has been in our genetic code for millennia – from chariots and horses, through the first imported petrol driven automobiles, the Indian flagship cars Ambassador and Contessa of Hindustan Motors, the favourite Indian family car Maruti, to Jaguars, Bentleys, Harleys and KTMs, we have come a long way in “mobilution” (mobility evolution).
Groundbreaking developments in design and engineering in the past few decades, global brand tie-ups, establishment of multiple manufacturing facilities for Indian and International automobile manufacturers, have brought to our market a huge variety , going in-sync with India’s cultural diversity and our “motogenic” appetites for more. Many major manufacturers have introduced flagship models exclusively for sale in India, because of the never ending, ever increasing demand for choice and exclusivity in the options that the population demands.
The entry of high-end sports and luxury car and motorcycle segments brought with them a wave of “cult”ures and led to the birth of a number of enthusiast clubs in the country. Every year, and increasingly so, plenty of speed and thrill driven events are hosted all across the country encouraging enthusiasts and others alike to join in and go through adrenaline driven experiences, visually feasting on the beauty, magnificence and sheer brutality of some of the most exquisite machines to be seen. Some of the clubs and events being organized by celebrity enthusiasts whose flair and passion for the thrill of driving led them to share it with others like them and the masses who have had a strong potential of converting to the enthusiast class.
Motorsports in India saw a new chapter being writ, with the opening of the Buddh International Circuit in 2011 at greater Noida, NCR. With Formula One being hosted in our country for the first time ever, the excitement of motorsport lovers and the general audience went off the charts, along with India’s position on the world map of automotive events speeding towards the top few.
Watching supercars and bikes racing neck to neck, lap after lap on circuits is one thing and what it has led to is completely another. 2014 saw the first ever track event in Indian motorsports history, where thundering down the race track were not Formula One cars or superbikes, but Tata Prima sport trucks, driven by some of the most experienced motorsport drivers from the European truck racing championships. Organized by Tata Motors, this event opened a whole new arena in motorsport and track events in India.
It simply does not stop at that, as enthusiast cultures have paved the way for another realm of the automotive world – the customization and aftermarket revolution is now a well established part of the Indian automobile industry. Performance and visual upgrades are now common amongst all enthusiast segments and others too, where people can simply not have enough of wanting to do more with their cars and motorcycles.
The customization realm has seen some serious expansion in the last decade with many a motorcycle and car custom outfits coming up all over the country, though mostly in the northern region. With a number of popular and successful builds under their belt, and having catered to celebrities, enthusiasts and some very exclusive clientele, these outfits have emerged as trendsetting brand names and major players in the customization league.
DC Design, led by the first Indian Customization guru – Dilip Chhabria, with some of their awe inspiring builds and fascinating interior options, have created waves in the global market and set the benchmark for numerous others aspiring to make a mark in this realm.
Events like the India Bike week and others have provided the biggest platforms for these outfits to build, display and market their hand built motorcycles and also compete with each other on grounds of design, build quality, exclusivity and visual appeal. Of the many exciting things to see, these events are a sea of big league motorcycles, some of them totally “icon”ic and a mouth watering variety of cruisers, choppers, bobbers, scramblers, cafe’ racers etc. The events also see huge sales of automotive themed merchandise along with giving a number of visual/performance accessory manufacturers a chance to reach out to the Indian enthusiasts and cater to their ever increasing demand for novelty.
Exposure to the western automotive market and trends through television shows, reviews, automotive events, magazines, and countless other channels, has also led to a developed aesthetic and visual design sense in the masses. A number of automotive design institutes have been conceived and they’ve come up with exclusive training programs for students, offering to provide them with various skills like sketching, rendering, utilising digital platforms and tools to communicate their ideas and concepts to well trained faculties from around the world. Under the guidance of these design gurus, the institutes have provided the students to enter the industry as a wave of fresh and budding designers with ideas that break the notion of even the sky being the limit.
In the backdrop of this current scenario, in the Indian automotive playground, we, over the coming weeks, would be bringing you news and articles not just on generic threads, but stories, write-ups and columns on each of the many realms of the Indian and International automotive world. Be it Design, manufacturing, brands, Customization, or groups, clubs, events and shows, we would bring you exclusive and exciting reads that would surely strike a chord with the enthusiast in you.