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Old 19th June 2010, 14:25   #1
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Default Hello from Achtung! 1997 Benz driver from UK

Hi all!

I'm from the UK, working in Bangalore on assignment for 2 years. It is fascinating driving on Indian roads! i.e. slightly terrifying.

As an expat, I needed a car and driver to get around. The default is Innova or Scorpio, but I thought they were not very exciting. I wanted a car that had ABS and airbags, and also built like a tank, to protect my family and I in the (it seemed inevitable!) event of an accident. I thought I might be able to pick up an older car which wouldn't be all rusty like they get in the UK, and I kind of liked the thought of my wife and daughters being chaufferred around the place, so thought about an old Mercedes.

I was very lucky and found one via carwale - 1997 E220 petrol, only 35 000 kms, leather etc - I thought it was too good to be true! Went to have a look and it was as described, in fantastic condition, so I bought it. Less money than an Innova, with ABS and airbags, and I think it is quite cool!

I saw Team-BHP and have been hooked by the forums, especially the inspiring travellogues. I've been rather disturbed by all the photos in the incredibly long accident section. I really like the fantastic enthusiasm of the contributors! So I am very pleased to be allowed in.

I'm looking forward to giving my views on the importance of petrol consumption, how to overtake, why I like driving in India, what it's like owning an old car, and my travel adventures. So far I've driven to Coorg and to Nandi Hills. Tomorrow - up early to go to Kolli Hills courtesy of some handy route guidance from Team BHP!

I'm 46 - my first (and second) cars were VW Golf GTis. Then a Honda Civic Vti (OHC - the 160 bhp 8000 rpm version), followed by a Fiat Grande Punto 1.2 diesel (bought in 2005) and we also have a Renault Grand Espace in the UK.

My Mercedes is a W124, E220 petrol in Silver. It has alloy wheels, leather interior and air-con, its manual (auto would have been better!) and kind of makes progress rather than zooming along. I drive on my driver's days off and enjoy tootling down to the airport in the early hours.
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Old 19th June 2010, 16:47   #2
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welcome to the forum achtung

Rajeev
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Old 19th June 2010, 17:28   #3
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Nice to have an expat on the forum.
Hope you have a great time here!
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Old 19th June 2010, 17:33   #4
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Achtung, welcome. That's a beautiful car that you have bought yourself. Do start a thread and post some pictures.

Just that you would like to know, the E220 featured in a thread here amongst one of the best cars to drive and own within a budget.
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Old 19th June 2010, 17:59   #5
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hi achtung!welcome onboard.i am sure you will have a great time at teambhp.
congrats on your purchse of your mercedes benz w124.the e220 is a beast on road.
if not mistaken you are talking about the off old madras road car owned by Mr Sunil.if that is the car i can vouch for it.its the cleanest car available in town.
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Old 22nd June 2010, 00:24   #6
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Hi all - thank you very much for the welcome!

Yes it is that car from the Old Madras Road - it's in excellent condition and I'm enjoying it (how did you know about it?). Had a good run down to Kolli Hills yesterday - the traffic is much nicer in Bangalore at 5am on a Sunday, for some odd reason.

Coming back uphill to Banglore I got stuck behind several trucks crawling up the hills. And there was the normal crazy driving. I saw an Innova lock up its wheels and skid under the back of a truck, though the passenger compartment did not seem affected, thankfully.

Not sure what to do a thread about - I could talk on my thoughts on overtaking (my overtaking became worse the longer I was stuck behind trucks!), owning an old vs owning a new car, the Electronic City toll road, my driving tactics and how they don't work, or pics of the car!
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Old 22nd June 2010, 19:26   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by achtung View Post

Not sure what to do a thread about - I could talk on my thoughts on overtaking (my overtaking became worse the longer I was stuck behind trucks!), owning an old vs owning a new car, the Electronic City toll road, my driving tactics and how they don't work, or pics of the car!
Anything goes. Maybe an ownership thread with some pictures. Most of the topics mentioned by you would fit well in the street experience section.

The forum is segregated quite well and I am sure you will find these sections.
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Old 22nd June 2010, 19:30   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by achtung View Post
Hi all - thank you very much for the welcome!

Yes it is that car from the Old Madras Road - it's in excellent condition and I'm enjoying it (how did you know about it?). Had a good run down to Kolli Hills yesterday - the traffic is much nicer in Bangalore at 5am on a Sunday, for some odd reason.

Coming back uphill to Banglore I got stuck behind several trucks crawling up the hills. And there was the normal crazy driving. I saw an Innova lock up its wheels and skid under the back of a truck, though the passenger compartment did not seem affected, thankfully.

Not sure what to do a thread about - I could talk on my thoughts on overtaking (my overtaking became worse the longer I was stuck behind trucks!), owning an old vs owning a new car, the Electronic City toll road, my driving tactics and how they don't work, or pics of the car!
That aint that big a problem. If you are not sure about what thread to create, just post on other threads.
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Old 22nd June 2010, 19:43   #9
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Default Welcome and safe driving

achtung,

Welcome. Hope you have a great time here on t-bhp.
On your hesitation in starting a thread, why don't you assemble your thoughts on your entire car buying experience and post it here? The characteristics and features in your Merc will be of great interst to many of us, I am sure. Buying a second hand ( pre-owned in modernspeak) Merc or a Bimmer is always a tingling experience.
You might also like to add to it your subsequent driving experiences.

Congratulations on buying a german, with many exciting (not dangerous) driving experiences ahead.

Regards
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Old 22nd June 2010, 23:02   #10
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Thanks everyone for making me welcome - think I'll do an illustrated tour of my car and how it is uniquely suited (sort of) to Bangalore driving!
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Old 22nd June 2010, 23:49   #11
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Welcome achtung!
You could also write about the traffic shock ( I guess it is more severe than the cultural shock) that you experienced!

Since you're from UK, I'm wondering why German name for your t-bhp handle?

My ex-boss was an expat from Germany, he stayed in Bangalore for 2 years. He bought himself a 500cc Royal Enfield bullet, and it was taken to Germany when he returned. Apart from that, he used to drive a Hyundai Santro rarely.

Last edited by clevermax : 22nd June 2010 at 23:55.
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Old 23rd June 2010, 08:44   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by achtung View Post
I could talk on my thoughts on overtaking (my overtaking became worse the longer I was stuck behind trucks!), owning an old vs owning a new car, the Electronic City toll road, my driving tactics and how they don't work, or pics of the car!
Quote:
Originally Posted by clevermax View Post
Welcome achtung!
You could also write about the traffic shock ( I guess it is more severe than the cultural shock) that you experienced!
Welcome achtung! It would really be interesting to hear about your driving endeavour here in India. My company doesn't allow expats to drive here in India.
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Old 24th June 2010, 13:44   #13
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Welcome to the forum. Will be great to learn about your experiences here as compared to ones in UK. I have been a great fan of TV series - Top Gear, Fifth Gear and Auto Trader.

Hope you have a wonderful time in your Merc. Looking forward to some travelogues from your side.

Cheers!
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