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Old 6th March 2014, 12:16   #1
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Default Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look

Tata Motors provided a glimpse of its T1 Prima Truck that is about to race in the T1 Truck Race that will take place at the Buddh International Circuit on 22nd and 23d March, 2014. The race will comprise of 12 such T1 trucks with identical specifications built in the Tata Motors plant in Jamshedpur. Tata Motors aims to change the general public perception about trucks and truck drivers and they say this particular initiative will bring in some glamour to the otherwise bland trucking industry.

About the race
  • First of its kind truck-racing event to be held in India.
  • Six teams in total, each will race two Prima T1 trucks.
  • International drivers have been selected for the event by Steve Horne (Organizer and Technical Advisor of the British Truck Racing Association).
  • The event and truck modifications have been approved by FIA (Federation Internationale de l'Automobile), which is the primary governing body of this event along with FMSCI (Federation of Motor Sports Clubs of India).
  • The one day event will have two races, beginning with a qualifying race.
  • The final race will be 15 laps long and will have a rolling start.
  • The overall track length has been shortened to 2.1 kms for this race.
  • An event at the Irungattukottai Race Track in Chennai is in the works but not confirmed. It will not be a part of this season.

Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look-dsc_0122.jpg

This particular Prima is a 4038.S, South-Africa spec model. Since, this is the first time such an experiment is being done in India, Tata Motors has decided to modify its standard Prima trucks for the race instead of producing race-spec trucks. If the 2014 truck racing event is a success, Tata Motors is willing to build racing variants of the Prima from scratch.

The racing Prima is powered by a 6.5L, 6-cylinder engine, which produces approximately 370 bhp @ 2100 rpm and a torque of 1550 Nm between 1200 to 1400 rpm. While the standard form of this engine produces 100 bhp less, Tata says that the gain in this power is due to a bigger and much efficient turbocharger that is attached to the engines in the T1 trucks. The Eaton 9-speed manual gearbox remains the same for now.

Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look-dsc_0126.jpg

Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look-dsc_0087.jpg

The height of the suspension has been lowered by removing helper springs, thus slightly lowering the overall centre of gravity of the truck.
Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look-dsc_0114.jpg

315/80 R22.5 racing tyres fitted at the front and back. The entire wheel-rim is made up from one piece of metal, thus eradicating any joints.
Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look-dsc_0060.jpg

The fuel-tank has been shifted from the side of the truck to the back of the cabin. The smaller tank now carries 90 litres of diesel compared to a total capacity of 625 litres, which the fuel tanks in the standard truck can hold.
Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look-dsc_0110.jpg

The fifth-wheel coupling has also been moved back over the rear wheels. The primary aim in the modifications was to keep as much weight on the rear wheels as possible to improve traction.
Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look-dsc_0158.jpg

This particular Prima still had its projector headlamps. The ones entering the race may not be fitted with these though.
Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look-dsc_0101.jpg

Brake Cooling on the Run:
Although the racing Prima gets better brakes with wider discs in the front and bigger drums at the rear, the R & D team at Tata Motors is developing a mechanism to cool the Prima's brakes on the move using water jets. Tata motors say that a patent is being currently filed for this mechanism and that the trucks in the race will be fitted with this system. However, the truck showcased in this thread was not fitted with such a system.

Last edited by Stratos : 7th March 2014 at 21:11.
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Old 6th March 2014, 12:22   #2
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Default re: Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look

The interior has been stripped down to bare-basic to prevent fire hazards.
Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look-dsc_0073.jpg

The Eaton 9-speed gearbox remains standard. Gear ratios have been changed.
Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look-gearbox.jpg

Instrument cluster same as the standard truck.
Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look-dsc_0083.jpg

Driver gets an FIA approved racing seat with 5-point harness.
Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look-dsc_0084.jpg

Mandatory fire extinguisher fitted in the cabin.
Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look-dsc_0085.jpg

The entire cabin is fitted with a roll-cage. Tata Motors said that it is one of the strongest and the most comprehensive roll-cage ever built in India.
Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look-dsc_0071.jpg

Window net for driver safety.
Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look-dsc_0104.jpg

Other notable modifications include a propeller shaft guard, relocation of the engine-cut off switch and changes in the chassis bolting and mudguard brackets as per FIA regulations.

A lap of Buddh International Circuit as a passenger:

A few of us were taken on a 'hot' lap of the track by one of the drivers provided by Tata Motors. Tata Motors claims to have done 22 modifications to the truck to make it race ready. Acceleration from standstill felt quick for a truck and it would hit a top speed of 110 km/hr as mentioned by Tata Motors. The gear-box, however, had some terrible issues. The driver had problems while shifting and some how the gear ratios for this particular truck felt mismatched. The overall weight shifting modifications have surely helped in improving the overall dynamics of the truck. Even while taking corners at high speeds, the body roll felt much controlled than what it would if it was a standard truck. The racing tyres provided excellent grip throughout the corners. The actual race trucks will supposedly have more modifications than this one and will also get the problems associated with the gear-box / gear ratios sorted out.

Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look-dsc_0221.jpg

Going flat-out on the long straight at BIC.
Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look-dsc_0202.jpg

The brakes were smoking hot every time the truck came in after doing a lap. This truck was not fitted with the cooling system.
Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look-dsc_0211.jpg

Last edited by Stratos : 7th March 2014 at 10:15.
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Old 6th March 2014, 20:04   #3
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Default Re: Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look

Thread moved from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section) to the CV Section. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 6th March 2014, 20:48   #4
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Default Re: Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look

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Originally Posted by Stratos View Post

The brakes were smoking hot every time the truck came in after doing a lap. This truck was not fitted with the cooling system.
The international trucks use the same cooling system as well for their truck racing , spraying water on the brakes to cool it.
Not sure if there is something different in TATA race trucks that they want to patent.
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Old 6th March 2014, 21:02   #5
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Default Re: Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look

Quote:
Originally Posted by tharian View Post
The international trucks use the same cooling system as well for their truck racing , spraying water on the brakes to cool it.
Not sure if there is something different in TATA race trucks that they want to patent.
Exactly. This is the norm in truck racing. Water spray to cool the brakes. That's the reason you see steam from the brakes when they brake.

Here's a video:

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Old 6th March 2014, 21:26   #6
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Default Re: Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look

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Originally Posted by Vid6639 View Post
Exactly. This is the norm in truck racing. Water spray to cool the brakes. That's the reason you see steam from the brakes when they brake.
Yes, I am aware. Actually the query was for the following statement.

I was not able to quote the following statement from Stratos' brief, hence pasting it.

"Brake Cooling on the Run:
Although the racing Prima gets better brakes with wider discs in the front and bigger drums at the rear, the R & D team at Tata Motors is developing a mechanism to cool the Prima's brakes on the move using water jets. Tata motors say that a patent is being currently filed for this mechanism and that the trucks in the race will be fitted with this system. However, the truck showcased in this thread was not fitted with such a system."
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Old 6th March 2014, 21:28   #7
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Default Re: Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look

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Originally Posted by Vid6639 View Post
Exactly. This is the norm in truck racing. Water spray to cool the brakes. That's the reason you see steam from the brakes when they brake.
Great video. Yes, this is exactly what it seems to me that Tata are doing. But, since they used the word 'patent', there may be something else to it as well. We will have to wait till the race to see what it is.

Brakes apart, compared to the acceleration and speeds the trucks in the video are doing, the Prima definitely felt much slower. .

Maximum speed in truck racing is supposedly limited to 160 km/hr (100 mph) as per FIA guidelines.
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Old 7th March 2014, 07:58   #8
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Default Re: Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look

What is the L mode on the gear lever for? And a 8 speed gearbox? That would make a good Fast & Furious kind of video.
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Old 7th March 2014, 09:44   #9
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Default Re: Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look

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Originally Posted by Sheel View Post
What is the L mode on the gear lever for? And a 8 speed gearbox?
It is a crawler gear that can be used if you are doing a hill-start or when the truck is fully loaded and starting off in the first gear is not working out.
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Old 7th March 2014, 10:03   #10
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Default Re: Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stratos View Post
The Eaton ZF 9-speed gearbox remains standard. Gear ratios have been changed.
Stratos, a small correction. Eaton & ZF are both different manufacturers of Heavy Duty transmissions and the one here is an Eaton 9 Speed.

Last edited by fiat_tarun : 7th March 2014 at 10:23.
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Old 7th March 2014, 11:45   #11
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Default Re: Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look

I was always fascinated with big trucks and used to download their wallpapers, never really looked at such minute details of the vehicles, thanks to the amazing people who put in so much of effort and share their detailed observation.
Will look forward to the truck racing event.
Thanks again guys.
Regards.
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Old 7th March 2014, 13:26   #12
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Default Re: Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look

wow, the trucks look mean! to me it just amplifies the difference between the CV and PV divisions of TM.

While the CV division can go head to head with any manufacturer, the same cannot be said of the PV division. Why cant they look in house for some inspiration!
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Old 7th March 2014, 15:42   #13
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Default Re: Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stratos View Post
Tata Motors provided a glimpse of its T1 Prima Truck that is about to race in the T1 Truck Race that will take place at the Buddh International Circuit on 22nd and 23d March, 2014. The race will comprise of 12 such T1 trucks with identical specifications built in the Tata Motors plant in Jamshedpur. Tata Motors aims to change the general public perception about trucks and truck drivers and they say this particular initiative will bring in some glamour to the otherwise bland trucking industry.
Any idea if it would be shown in TV?
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Old 7th March 2014, 20:50   #14
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Default Re: Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look

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Originally Posted by Stratos View Post
The racing Prima is powered by a 6.5L, 8-cylinder engine
Are you sure about the engine specs you mention? I've never heard of any 8 cylinder engine being used in a Tata.
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Old 7th March 2014, 21:11   #15
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Default Re: Tata Prima T1 Racing Truck : A Close Look

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Originally Posted by directinjection View Post
Are you sure about the engine specs you mention? I've never heard of any 8 cylinder engine being used in a Tata.
I myself was of the opinion that it is a 6-cylinder engine untill I inquired one of the people involved in this project and he mentioned it to be an 8-cylinder.

On researching further it seems that you may be right, since it is a modified version of the same engine that powers the standard 4038.S. Thank you for pointing it out.

Last edited by Stratos : 7th March 2014 at 21:12.
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