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Old 31st October 2010, 19:40   #1
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Default Indian G Wagen, Built unlike any other! by Jeep Captain.

Situation
Lots of OTR's happening in Bangalore / Hyderabad /Chennai /Bombay /Delhi and all over India and I'm receiving invitations for each one of them from friends, fellow Jeeper's and bhpian's.

Solution
You have many Jeeps and Gypsies..Just pick one, go and attend the OTR.

Hold on! you have a problem
None of the 4x4's can go beyond 100 kmph speed and few of them is limited to 3 gears & 70-80 kmph and their reliability are not that good for long distance cross country drives.

Now What?
Use your Bolero or Armada

Nah.. Not a good solution
Both are comfortable.. But they are LWB, Armada is old and Bolero is a 2WD

Conculsion
After having a battalion of 4x4's , unfortunately I still don't have a single vehicle which can take me to the OTR location effortlessly, without any breakdown and as fast as possible and preferably in a climate controlled environment... then do hard core offroading, return home without any breakdown which is also cheaper/affordable to buy & maintain.

I know this is not just my case. This is a dilemma faced by almost all Jeepers/offroaders in our country.

There is a new vehicle which is scheduled to be launched soon which I was told will take care of this situation, but we have been waiting for ages for that golden moment and we still don't have the dates.

So finally I decided to find my own way through! Thus the hunt for an OTR capable & long distance cruiser vehicle began. I spread the news to my close circle of Jeeper friends and they also started the hunt! Found few imported 4x4's. They were either too pricey or too old and too fancy to be taken to OTR's.

The hunt continued...until a day when my cellphone buzzed indicating I have a text message. I thought may be another mass marketing sms from a fashion store or lingerie shop. Oh no.. Its not. Its from my good friend and Jeeper Jayesh & text message reads this way. Trax 4x4 for sale call Mr. ______and number was also sent. I got excited and called Jayesh immediately and found that he saw the advertisement in classifieds of a newspaper. He said he already called the owner and spoke to him and said the owner seems to be genuine and felt like its gonna be a good buy. After I hang up the phone with Jayesh I tried calling that number many times, but couldn't get through.

To be continued........
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Old 31st October 2010, 20:25   #2
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After attempting to call the Trax owner for few days, I stopped thinking that he must have already sold the vehicle.

One week passed, I got an email from Jayesh asking whether I was able to reach the owner. As soon as I saw that mail I picked up the phone and called again. Bingo!! He answered!!!

I spoke to the Trax owner for about 10 minutes asking all the details and he was kind enough to share all the info he had and whatever history he knew about this vehicle.

Here are the details!

Make - Tempo Trax
Model - 2000
Type - SWB with Hard Top Body
4WD - Yes
Tyres - 4 x New NEXEN A/T tyres
Working 4x4 - Yes
Kilometers done - No info
Owners - 2
Interior OK
Engine - Mercedes Benz OM 616
GB - 4 speed
TC - 2 speed divorced TC



I was getting more and more excited...until he told me this
  • Engine - Needs overhauling
  • Brakes - Needs overhauling
  • Electricals - Needs fixing
But I was still interested and I asked him to send me pics. He send me pics in 10 minutes and the minute I saw them ....Wow!! I was jumping with Joy! I said to myself Thank you God! You have answered my prayers finally!

You have to see it to believe it what I found!!

A well maintained and very rare Trax 4x4 SWB/Cabriolet or Indian G Wagen with removable HT !!


Indian G Wagen, Built unlike any other! by Jeep Captain.-dsc_0476re.jpg

Indian G Wagen, Built unlike any other! by Jeep Captain.-dsc_0479re.jpg

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Indian G Wagen, Built unlike any other! by Jeep Captain.-dsc_0488re.jpg

Indian G Wagen, Built unlike any other! by Jeep Captain.-dsc_0489re.jpg

Indian G Wagen, Built unlike any other! by Jeep Captain.-dsc_0491re.jpg

Now, over to for your comments and thoughts.......before I share my plans about this German Marvel.
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Old 31st October 2010, 20:40   #3
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Shibu, congratulations on your purchase (actually I'm tired of doing this again and again), it is indeed a great find! What is the max speed for this vehicle and why do you think this will reduce your hassles of covering through long distance OTR locations. Does it have an AC?

We need to try this out once, side by side!

Spike
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Old 31st October 2010, 20:49   #4
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Oh Shibu, i thought your luck was sealed for the time being after getting hold of the Defender and here you go again.... Can't believe it! Share more history of the vehicle please.
So time for couple of Mahindras and Gypsies to go i guess? Oh and congratulations BTW
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Old 31st October 2010, 21:06   #5
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First of all, congratulations on your find! Lastly, best wishes for the rebuild/restoration. After doing so many restorations, you are wiser in this stuff.
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Old 31st October 2010, 21:19   #6
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i've always loved the 'G-wagen' ish look of the trax.
how much more different is the trax on the highway?
is it good on OTRs? this question is straight out of curiosity
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Old 31st October 2010, 21:21   #7
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Shibhu,
congratulations on your purchase.
Infact when i once saw a swb trax here in (koramangala) Bangalore, i thought this is some whacky mod job where a trax body is cut and fit to a CJ3b.

Now i know that this indeed exists. Let me check if i can talk to the owner.

Congratulations once again.

Regards,
Krishna.
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Old 31st October 2010, 21:23   #8
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Great find Shibu, the vehicle seems to be in a very good condition. Plus its a SWB and a removable top.
Congrats on your find.
Does it have stock PTO and also does it have a manual diff-locks ?

The OM616 IDi is a workhorse of an engine,smooth and efficient.
Change to proper tires, larger tires like 270/70's will sap the engine of it's power.

Change to synthetic oil ,they make the engine /gear box even more smoother.

Boy you are lucky to get this vehicle.
Yes all your needs from an off-roader can be fulfilled by this vehicle.
Long distance travel in this car with a Mercedes Benz OM616 engine is hardly any problem and off-roading is fun too.

Again congrats on this find.
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Old 31st October 2010, 22:08   #9
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O M G !!!
a G Wagon , you are a crazy dude !!

please go for bling bling black.
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regards,
Nikhil
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Old 1st November 2010, 06:52   #10
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WOW!!!
Congrats on the great find and bringing her home. Further it looks to be in a great condition. Please post your reviews on the on road handling and what comfortable speed does the vehicle go to, Though I'm not a speed freak but just inquisitive the on-road handling in low triple digits.
Cheers and will wait for the updates.
Congrats once again
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Old 1st November 2010, 07:06   #11
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Shibu,
Congratulations! You are one hell of a 4X4 lucky guy.

Just loved the clean cut looks of this vehicle. It is in a very good condition.
If you can try and get hold of a brand new engine, just swap it.

There is so much that can be done on this machine on the cosmetic/exterior front without spoiling its looks.

The front diff. is not visible?

I think I will be coming down to take it away from you.
Regards,

Last edited by fazalaliadil : 1st November 2010 at 07:09.
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Old 1st November 2010, 09:26   #12
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Excellent find mate. You are lucky to find this with the OM616 engine. Is it the Turbo OM616 or the NA version?
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Old 1st November 2010, 11:33   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SPIKE ARRESTOR View Post
Shibu, congratulations on your purchase (actually I'm tired of doing this again and again), it is indeed a great find! What is the max speed for this vehicle and why do you think this will reduce your hassles of covering through long distance OTR locations. Does it have an AC?
We need to try this out once, side by side!
Spike
Dear Spike, Thanks mate. I have driven it only about 70 km on the day I picked it. Since the Engine was in dying condition, I did not push it to the limit.Plus the brakes were also bad. So I will try it after the rebuild and let you know the top speed,. I am sure It will be in the range of 120-130.

These are the reasons I find this vehicle interesting as a OTR vehicle & Cruiser.

OTR
  • SWB & Light weight due to removable Hard Top
  • Front IFS ( Tried and tested Mercedes Engineering)
  • Extra strong tubular Chassis which can take a lot of abuse
  • Rear SPOA, Look at the clearance from my last pic.
  • No dropping shock absorber mounts, Tapered fuel tank design for better departure angle
  • Shorter Rear over-hang
  • 16" wheels for more clearance
  • Very good approach angle in the front
  • Excellent break over angle
  • Proven Mercedes Engine + GB +TC
  • Diff locks ( planned upgrade)
  • Snorkel ( planned upgrade)
Cruiser
  • Refined/smooth Mercedes engine than existing 4x4's
  • Simple Design, controls
  • Excellent driving position
  • Front IFS
  • Smooth rear suspension
  • Less or limited Body Roll
  • Disc brakes ( once upgraded) ( planned upgrade)
  • Forward facing rear seats
  • Comfort of light weight removable Hard Top ( Most important)
  • A/C once installed ( planned upgrade)
  • Quieter Engine ( compared to existing 4x4 counterparts)
  • Lower NVH levels inside cabin
  • Huge wind screen offers better visibility
Other
  • Rock Solid OM 616 Engine
  • Cheap to buy and maintain
  • Proven Reliability world wide
Once all the upgrades are done.I will park it side by side with your machine and do a comparison test and post it here.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Kandisa View Post
Oh Shibu, i thought your luck was sealed for the time being after getting hold of the Defender and here you go again.... Can't believe it! Share more history of the vehicle please.
So time for couple of Mahindras and Gypsies to go i guess? Oh and congratulations BTW

Dear Soumen,
Thanks a lot. I will share the detailed history in a separate post, Just to make it brief. As per the information received, this vehicle has served most of its life in last 10 years in the Himalayas. Shocking right? But true.

Yes, time for few Gypsies and M&M to go. Yellow Gypsy is already gone. Few more going soon.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Abes View Post
First of all, congratulations on your find! Lastly, best wishes for the rebuild/restoration. After doing so many restorations, you are wiser in this stuff.

Dear Abes
,Thanks a lot. I am not the best.. I am still learning from everyone here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 14000rpm View Post
i've always loved the 'G-wagen' ish look of the trax.how much more different is the trax on the highway?
is it good on OTRs? this question is straight out of curiosity

Dear 14000rpm
, Me too loved the G Wagen's.Planing to do slight cosmetic mods to look like G Wagen. I am preparing this trax for the Great Mountain Challenge which we are organizing on Nov 27th. I will give you detailed report on its OTR performance after the event.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kittigadu View Post
Shibhu,
congratulations on your purchase. Infact when i once saw a swb trax here in (koramangala) Bangalore, i thought this is some whacky mod job where a trax body is cut and fit to a CJ3b.
Now i know that this indeed exists. Let me check if i can talk to the owner.
Congratulations once again.
Regards,Krishna.
Dear Krishna, Thanks a lot. I am not surprised. Many people doesnt know that there was one such vehicle in Indian market. Shame on Bajaj Tempo / Force motors for not properly marketing this amazing machine.

Even I have not seen more than 5 of these vehicles on Indian Roads.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mohan View Post
Great find Shibu, the vehicle seems to be in a very good condition. Plus its a SWB and a removable top.
Congrats on your find.
Does it have stock PTO and also does it have a manual diff-locks ?
The OM616 IDi is a workhorse of an engine,smooth and efficient.
Change to proper tires, larger tires like 270/70's will sap the engine of it's power.
Change to synthetic oil ,they make the engine /gear box even more smoother.
Boy you are lucky to get this vehicle.
Yes all your needs from an off-roader can be fulfilled by this vehicle.
Long distance travel in this car with a Mercedes Benz OM616 engine is hardly any problem and off-roading is fun too.

Again congrats on this find.
Dear Doc Mohan, Thanks a lot for your comments.
Well I did not get a chance to check much on the mechanical side.
  • I didnt check about the PTO ( will check and updat)
  • No there is no Diff Locks ( Planing to install)
  • Will change to Fully Synthetic oil
  • Currently in the process of rebuilding the OM 616
  • And fixing some other minor issues
I will be needing lot of your help to build this machine.Will be in touch with you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jeepster View Post
O M G !!!
a G Wagon , you are a crazy dude !!

please go for bling bling black.regards,
Nikhil
Dear Nikhil, Thanks dude. I am going for Black but not bling black.

Quote:
Originally Posted by harjeev View Post
WOW!!!
Congrats on the great find and bringing her home. Further it looks to be in a great condition. Please post your reviews on the on road handling and what comfortable speed does the vehicle go to, Though I'm not a speed freak but just inquisitive the on-road handling in low triple digits.
Cheers and will wait for the updates.Congrats once again
Dear Harjeev, Thanks a lot bro.It was previoulsy owned by a bhpian so it has to be in good condition, right? I will be posting regular reviews about on and off road driving of this vehicle.From my short driving experience, where I drove on highway and on Ghat sections for about 70 km, the road handling was amazing. I was taking Z turns in 70-80 km and the vehicle was handling like a car.

I am also a not a speed freak bro, what I was looking for was a vehicle which can cruise effortlessly on 120-130 kmph for long distance if required.


Quote:
Originally Posted by fazalaliadil View Post
Shibu,
Congratulations! You are one hell of a 4X4 lucky guy.

Just loved the clean cut looks of this vehicle. It is in a very good condition.
If you can try and get hold of a brand new engine, just swap it.

There is so much that can be done on this machine on the cosmetic/exterior front without spoiling its looks.
The front diff. is not visible?
I think I will be coming down to take it away from you.
Regards,
Dear Fazal Sir, Thanks a lot Sir. Thanks for your suggestion, I am also thinking in that lines about getting a new Engine and swapping. But let me see. You will see this machine getting turned to a Monster offroader soon.
Cosmetic modes are also in the plan.

You dont need to come down to take it.. I will send it to you.


Quote:
Originally Posted by 4x4addict View Post
Excellent find mate. You are lucky to find this with the OM616 engine. Is it the Turbo OM616 or the NA version?
Dear Tini,Thanks mate. This one has Naturally Aspirated OM616 and 4 Speed GB. May be a turbo will be coming soon. Watch this space for updates.
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Old 1st November 2010, 11:44   #14
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congrats buddy, another one to the collection
seems in great condition.

curious question though:
have you driven her on road on a long drive
if yes
  • u rate her better then a gypsy for long drives?
  • is her steering position truck like , like in the gurkha( if yes, try and change that, personally my main drawback of the gurkha)
  • hows the handling at high speeds
sorry im asking you these questions,
not much experience about this vehicles,
have only driven dr. mohans gurkha from that family

but shes a looker and congrats again,


regards,
Allan
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Old 1st November 2010, 12:32   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xtreme power View Post
congrats buddy, another one to the collection seems in great condition.
curious question though:
have you driven her on road on a long drive
if yes
  • u rate her better then a gypsy for long drives?
  • is her steering position truck like , like in the gurkha( if yes, try and change that, personally my main drawback of the gurkha)
  • hows the handling at high speeds
sorry im asking you these questions,
not much experience about this vehicles,
have only driven dr. mohans gurkha from that family
but shes a looker and congrats again,
regards,Allan
Dear Allan , Thanks a lot buddy. Happy to answer your questions.
  • I would rate this better than Gypsy for long drives mainly due to bigger interior space and softer suspension and of course the sweet OM 616 heart and matching GB.
  • I have not driven a Gurkha, so I cant compare, But Its comfortable than any other 4x4 in its class. Even my friends who came with for the test drive was impressed with the driving position, comfort and the handling. They (my friends who came) owned or still owns Hummer H2, Wrangler TJ, Merc SLK and Range Rover etc. So you can imagine what I am talking about.
  • If I say it handles like a swift @ high speed it will not be an exaggeration. I am not talking about highway driving here. I tried little highway and mostly winding roads.
  • Just to give you and example about handling...during my TD the curves which I took with ease on this Trax, My friend who was following in my MM550XD had to down shift, brake, and then turn. and still 550 went out of line ( oversteer or under steer) with tyres screeching.
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