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Old 13th April 2015, 14:59   #1
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Arrow Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune

Here's the long overdue report. Was awaiting pics form Evo Magazine for the same.

If you have been following most of my threads here, you will know, that most of them begin with "It started with a call"; and this thread is no different.

Ouseph Chacko, ex autocar and current Evo Magazine assistant editor calls me and talks about the (then proposed) Offroad Expo and my thoughts on the same. One thing leads to another and a few calls later they ask me if i would be on the jury and would i conduct a small offroad course at the venue.

Affirmative to both and i'm set.

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-logo.jpg

This is followed by an online campaign where my name pops up and is mentioned in the following thread:

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/4x4-ex...-1-2015-a.html (India's first Offroad Expo in Pune - February 27 to March 1, 2015)

In the meanwhile Uday Bhan Singh (UBS) calls me from Calcutta and says he's also been invited and will be landing in Mumbai on day 1 of the expo. We decide to head out together from here to Pune. I pick him from the airport and we head out.

Day 1 was jury testing on a private track they had created.

I'm quoting from their magazine:

Quote:
Welcome to the first award of its kind in India. Presented by JK Tyre, powered by evo India and with NDTV’s C&B show as a partner, to win here, you need to be exceptional, but even that may not be enough. You need to have made a change to the way things were, brought about a change to the scenario and of course, gotten dirty doing all this. As you can imagine, picking winners from so many entrants isn’t easy, but we stuck our boots firmly in the mud, shifted into four-low and got down to the business of picking the best of the best from the offroad world.
From SUVs to adventure bikes, teams and events, and even a few extraordinary people, we’ve left no stone unturned. All in an effort to ensure that we encompass the entire off- roading community.
The hi-lift jack, that we’ve chosen to be our award, is in many ways symbolic of the off road community. As it has raised jeeps on many an occasion, we’ve awarded it to those people and vehicles that have raised the bar.
Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-award.jpg

Last edited by Tejas@perioimpl : 14th April 2015 at 14:01.
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Old 13th April 2015, 15:17   #2
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Default re: Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune

EVO India would take care of food and accommodation for us during the entire event.

The following were the jury members:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-off-road-awards-report.jpg

The cars to be tested were nearly all the 4x4 and AWD cars sold in India.

These included:
  • BMW X3
  • Toyota Fortuner
  • Pajero Sport
  • Renault Duster
  • Mahindra Thar
  • Force Gurkha
  • Audi Q5
  • Audi Q3
  • Izusu DMax
  • Maruti Gypsy
  • Renault Koleos
  • Ford Ecosport
  • Polaris Range of ATVs
  • Honda CRV
  • Skoda Yeti
  • Mahindra Scorpio
  • Mahindra Rexton
  • Ford Endeavor
  • Range Rover
  • Hyundai Santa Fe
  • Tata Safari
  • Bikes - TVS, Triumph, etc
  • Mercedes SUVs
  • Nissan Terrano
  • Mahindra XUV 500
  • May have missed out a few. Apologies

The jury cars lined up:

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These cars were to be tested in a track prepared by the Pune Pathfinders offroad club.

Here's a layout of the track:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-11091138_743062562459585_5294707677938603620_n.jpg

Here's the text from the article:

Quote:
You can’t really judge off-road prowess on the road can you? That’s why the jury had this purpose built JK Tyre Arena of Champions off-road track at their disposal. It was designed to test the abilities of these off-roaders and to that extent had dips, steep inclines, rocks and water wading sections. Ofcourse, we kept the hard core bits for the hard core off-roaders, but still, even some of the all-wheel drive SUV’s managed to impress with their abilities.

Last edited by Tejas@perioimpl : 14th April 2015 at 12:46.
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Old 13th April 2015, 15:38   #3
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Default re: Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune

Some random pics from the Jury testing round:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-arch-jcb.jpg

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Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-img_8268.jpeg
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Old 13th April 2015, 15:45   #4
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Default re: Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune

We were given parameters to test the vehicles out and form to fill for each vehicle. After testing we put them in sealed envelopes and after all vehicles were tested, the jury met and tabulated the final winners for all the various categories.

The winners in each category are. The text about each winner is given to me by EVO India.

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Uday Bhan Singh Receiving his award:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-uday-bhan-singh.jpeg

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Santosh could not make it but had sent a recorded video message that was played back on the digital screen.

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-screen-shot-20150413-3.43.29-pm.png

Ashish Gupta and Ashish Dukle for RFC/Cougar:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-cougar.jpeg

Thrill of Driving Award: Polaris RZR 800

Here's Mr. Pankaj Dube of Polaris accepting the award from Mr. G S Bedi of JK Tyres:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-polaris.jpg

Competition 4x4 Category: Force Gurkha

Mr. Bedi giving away the trophy to the Force Officials:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-gs-bedi-head-oe-sales-jk-tyre-presents-force-motors-competition-4x4-year.jpeg

Bike Category: Tiger Triumph

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-triumph.jpeg

Pickup Category - Isuzu D-Max

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-isuzu.jpeg

Compact Luxury SUV - Audi Q3

Here's me and Gaurav Gill giving away the award:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-audi.jpeg

Premium Luxury SUV - BMW X3

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-bmw.jpeg

Full Size Luxury SUV - Range Rover

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-range-rover.jpeg

Soft Roader - Hyundai Santa Fe

Variant of the year: Renault Duster AWD

The team got stuck in traffic and couldn't reach on time to pick the awards

Hall of Fame - Tata Safari

Siddarth and Hari Singh giving away the award:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-tata-motors.jpeg

Hall of Fame - Maruti Gypsy

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-maruti.jpeg

Team of the year - 2 wheelers - TVS Racing

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-tvs.jpeg

Team of the year - 4 wheelers - Mahindra Adventure

Bijoy receiving the award:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-gs-bedi-jk-tyre-head-oe-sales-presenting-mahindra-adventure-team-year-trophy.jpeg

Offroader of the Year: Mahindra Thar

Vinod Nookala receiving the award:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-mahindra-thar.jpeg

Performance SUV Category - Mercedes Benz ML63 AMG

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-mercedes.jpeg

SUV Category - Toyota Fortuner

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-toyota.jpeg

Compact SUV Category - Skoda Yeti

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-skoda.jpeg

Last edited by GTO : 15th April 2015 at 08:21. Reason: As per PM
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Old 13th April 2015, 16:10   #5
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Default re: Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune

Here's a picture with all the winners on the stage:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-all-winners.jpg
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Old 13th April 2015, 16:43   #6
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Default re: Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune

Coming back to the flow of events.

I pick up UBS in the morning from the airport.

On the way to Pune, we stop at Allan's garage on Mr. Viveck Goenka's invitation for lunch. UBS was keen to see all the super vintage vehicles there and was thrilled at the level of restoration.

Once we reach Pune, we quickly get into the vehicles to do the jury testing and quickly compile the results. On day 1 we did not have much time to actually go around the entire arena to check out the happenings.

By late evening, it's time for the awards.

The awards were hosted at the Amanora Town Hall which is a mall in the outskirts of Pune. Very nice mall and spacious.

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In the centre of the mall at the open air auditorium, a stage was created for the awards night

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-start.jpg


The crowd gathering:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-people1.jpg

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-p2.jpg

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-p3.jpg

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Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-p5.jpg

Sirish gives the introduction and is also the master of ceremony:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-sirish.jpg

Uday Bhan Singh talks about all things jeep:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-ubs.jpg

Sean of everything4wd talks about the vendor scene in India:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-sean.jpg

The recorded video about Santosh talking is also played back:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-cs.jpg

I was also given a slot to talk about the current offroad scenario in India. My talk was a little grim and i was dubbed "The Grim Reaper" by Sirish.

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-tejas1.jpg

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-me.jpg

The audience did listen with rapt attention and i was glad that a lot of people came back and told me that what i said, needed to be said.

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-p6.jpg

Unfortunately can't find a video about the speech.

Last edited by Tejas@perioimpl : 14th April 2015 at 14:06.
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Old 13th April 2015, 16:54   #7
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Default re: Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune

Following this was a gala dinner and cocktail night hosted by EVO.

We spent a good night interacting with the industry people.

Got up late the next day and casually visited the arena after breakfast.

Here's a map put up for visitors

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They had demarcated different pavilions. One was for manufacturers to showcase their vehicles and the other was for vendors. There was another area where the Pune Pathfinders and parked their modified jeeps inside the mall.


The manufacturers:

Gurkha. They showcased the regular and the RFC build:

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Mahindra displayed the entire SUV range:

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Mercedes displayed the GLA:

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Skoda:

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DSK Hyosung:

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Triumph:

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The vendors. The guys present were: Prabhu from New Mars Hyderabad showcasing the Thar hard top and accessories, Sajid from MS, Mumbai showcasing a RFC build and a few other modifiers whose names escape me.

Sajid:

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Prabhu from New Mars:

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There was also the 2 wheeled Segway type of vehicle on demo / sale. The name escapes me though:

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Unfortunately don't have pictures of other vendors.


This time there were not too many vendors showcasing since they did not have adequate notice.


The Pune Pathfinders jeeps showcased:

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Last edited by Tejas@perioimpl : 14th April 2015 at 13:36.
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Old 13th April 2015, 16:56   #8
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Default re: Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune

In addition to the displays, there were three offroad tracks prepared.

One track was the same as the jury track as mentioned earlier and was known as the JK Arena / Polaris track. After the jury round, offroaders were allowed to use this track as their playground and have fun. The Pune Pathfinders provided recovery services.

The Polaris in action:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-polaris.jpg

The offroaders having fun:

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Gurkha also had a nice track that very well showcased the advantages of the factory fitted diff locks:

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The Mahindra track and the thars:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-dsc_0139.jpg

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-dsc_0142.jpg

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Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-dsc_0174.jpg

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Old 14th April 2015, 13:26   #9
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Default re: Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune

There was unique concept called muddy evenings introduced for this event:

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Basically it was an interaction with offroaders. Here's the schedule:

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The concept was the Sirish would ask a few questions and then the audience could interact. Each session was approx 15 minutes.

The venue: It was initially to be held outdoors in the atrium but due to unseasonal rains the venue was shifted indoors. Unfortunately this caused a lot of people to miss out on the talks because they couldn't find the new venue.

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-venue.jpg

Here's Pankaj Dube (Country head of Polaris):

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UBS talking about his jeeping experiences:

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Gaurav Gill talking about his rally career:

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I also do a live Hi Lift Jack (Farm Jack) demo. First talk about the jack:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-start.jpg

Show mounting points:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-ayub.jpg

Ouseph hods the mic while i talk and do the demo:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-ouseph.jpg

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Participants are encouraged to try using the jack themselves

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-hakee.jpg

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-hakee-demo.jpg

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-hakee-demo-2.jpg

We end with a general Q&A session:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-questions.jpg

Last edited by Tejas@perioimpl : 14th April 2015 at 13:29.
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Old 14th April 2015, 13:42   #10
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Default re: Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune

The next day UBS and i decided that we would head back to Mumbai.

We did meet a lot of friends both local and outstation guys who drove down especially from the event from Gulbarga, Hyderabad, etc.

From what we heard, at night there was a rock concert:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-rock.jpg

All the participants were also given a memento of the expo. A few snaps from there:

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-dsc01052.jpg

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-dsc01055.jpg

Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune-dsc01064.jpg


NOTE: All pics were supplied to me by EVO Magazine and a few were taken from their Facebook page.

Last edited by Tejas@perioimpl : 14th April 2015 at 13:43.
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Old 14th April 2015, 13:49   #11
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Default re: Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune

My thoughts on the Expo:

It's a wonderful concept and should grow leaps and bounds.

Would really like more vendors to showcase their wares so that these events become a one shop stop for all your 4x4 needs. Plus more vendors, means more competition, means better discounts for the buyer.

The educative muddy evenings was a good concept and should be pushed to bigger workshops in my opinion.

The only issue i see in our country is that people are not willing to travel like they would in one of the big jeep jamborees in the US. Mostly it is the local crowd and few hardcore enthusiasts who come.

If such initiatives are to be sustained, it is imperative that the 4x4 crowd attends such events.

Although the Amanora mall recorded at footfall of 1.6 lakh people during the show (apparently a record for them), how many were true 4x4 enthusiasts? But still a good number and at least it gets the sport out to the common man.

Kudos and well deserved praise to the entire O team.

Looking forward to more. Here's the upcoming schedule:

May: Bengaluru

July: Goa

September: Delhi

December: Pune

Last edited by Tejas@perioimpl : 14th April 2015 at 13:57.
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Old 14th April 2015, 15:45   #12
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Default re: Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune

Thread moved from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section) to the 4x4 Section. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 14th April 2015, 16:07   #13
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Default re: Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune

Great report Tejas! What I would like to see is a few lines from you on all the vehicles you drove on that course, did any vehicle really surprise you, were any disappointing?
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Old 14th April 2015, 19:09   #14
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Default Re: India's first Offroad Expo in Pune - February 27 to March 1, 2015

I took some pics of the Off-Roaders late night on the last day of the event. It poured heavily that evening, so there were limited people at the venue when I was there.

Clicked a few pictures. The RFC Gurkha 4x4x4 is such a stunner !
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Last edited by //M : 14th April 2015 at 19:11.
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Old 15th April 2015, 12:48   #15
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Default Re: Report: 2015 EVO Offroad Awards & Expo, Pune

Quote:
Originally Posted by akshay1234 View Post
Great report Tejas! What I would like to see is a few lines from you on all the vehicles you drove on that course, did any vehicle really surprise you, were any disappointing?
Thanks Akshay.

The one vehicle that really surprised me in a good way was the Pajero Sport. Loved it. Unfortunately the Pajero Sport didn't win any prizes but i loved it.

Would i buy it over the Fortuner? Heart says yes, mind says no.

Too many issues with Service and Spares. Also if you compare resale value of the Fortuner compared to a Pajero Sport (both of same vintage and kms), the fortuner outsells it by a huge margin infact even more kms run Fortuners are more expensive. Need to keep those points in mind as well.

Last edited by Aditya : 15th April 2015 at 16:57. Reason: Typos
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