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Old 13th June 2012, 16:49   #1
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Default Tata Nano goes on a 970 Km pilgrimage

TATA NANO goes on 970 Kms pilgrimage

Maharashtra is a state which has many famous pilgrimage places.
Pandharpur,Tuljapur,Akkalkot are one of them.

As a child i grew up hearing stories of how pious these places are and its a must visit.My grandparents used to walk 18 days from mumbai to reach pandharpur, this was a ritual every year.

I had a 6 day holiday and my in-laws were also interested to visit these places.Thus it was 5 people who embarked on a pilgrimage.

Ever since petrol has got expensive, i have been finding reasons to drive.
And this was not to be missed, I had made my mind that Nano will be our ride.

It might sound crazy, but 5 people can fit in nano provided atleast 2 are thin.
This was exactly the case, also trip did not involve any major ghat roads.
We had 1 medium sized soft bag, and 2 small bags which i was able to cram in the 80 ltr dicky.

Did the car complete such a grueling journey without any issues?
Was it foolish on my part to embark on this journey in such a small car?
Is TATA NANO reliable enough for such long hauls?

READ ON

DAY 1:

After eagerly waiting for the day to come, we finally started at 7am on 10 April 2012.

Day 1 destination was to be Pandharpur

Started @ 7am and we headed towards Kapurhol.
Worth mentioning here was that Nano climbed the ghat section after Katraj in 3rd gear.Turned left and first place we visited was Tirupati Balaji temple replica on Narayanpur road.

Since it was crowded as it being Sunday, we skipped darshan.
We preceded further and reached Ek Mukhi Datt mandir ,Narayanpur.

Small ghat section was not at all challenging and Nano was easily up to the task.We were able to attend complete aarti in Narayanpur and then started for onward journey @ 9am.

We joined Saswad - Jejuri road and halted for a tea break at a small hotel.
Road conditions are good, but have to be wary of dumb two wheeler riders.
The most frustrating part was riders riding parellely and having a Chat on a state highway.

After reaching Nira, we turned left on the top of the bridge and headed towards Phaltan.Roads were ok in it was after Phaltan that an expressway quality road comes up.

But it was only for a small section of 10-15 kms.

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Road would get bad as soon as any village would come.

With road expansion still in progress there were diversions.
After Natepute it was single carriageway with bumpy road sections in between.But roads were motorable in general, and I had to slow down on bumpy sections.

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There are few Sugarcane juice vendors on these roads.
The experience to have a break and have sugarcane juice next to sugarcane fields sitting on charpoi is awesome.

Since pandharpur was the destination we were riding at a leisurely place and stopping after every 50-60kms for a break.

This road in call the Sant Dyaneshwar Palkhi Mahamarg, and this is the road from which Warkaris (People on 21 day or more pilgrimage) walk to reach pandharpur.

Road was scenic and we also had brief spells of very hard rain.
Traveling through village roads can never get boring in India since you get to see many beautiful moments of everyday life.

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Also the most famous car in these sections is INDICA VISTA!
Alto was very scarce and INDICA VISTA is aplenty esp in white.
Even got to see few TATA Venture vans.

Road section improved dramatically after Malshiras village and we were doing speeds in region of 80-90 consistently.

Finally we reached Pandharpur at 1.45 pm and went to Gajanan Maharaj Math to book rooms.
We were in for a SHOCK, President Pratibha Patil had decided to visit Pandharpur the next day. Hence all rooms were full and private hotel registers were sealed.

Hotels were full of security personnel, it was time to change our plans.
We decided to have lunch and then think over how we should go about our plans.Hotel Aishwarya was our first option, but again lunch was not served that day.

We had a decent meal at SANJAY DINING HALL near Savarkar statue.
Finally we decided to skip darshan that day since it was Sunday and planned to proceed to solapur.

We started @ 3.30 pm towards solapur and decided to call it a day at solapur.Road till NH9 is fantastic section, fast, sparse traffic and wide.
We were able to touch Nh9 in 45 minutes from Pandharpur.

The intersection itself was chok a bloc and once on NH9 i knew why it is a nightmare.Trucks, diversions and speed breakers are what NH9 is all about.
It’s not surprising if there are accidents on this highway.
People get very desperate to overtake trailer and slow moving trucks and end up doing risky overtakes.

After taking a long break of about 45 minutes on a highway Dhaba near WADWAL, we reached solapur @ 6pm.

Thus it took only 45 minutes to cover 40 kms from pandharpur to NH9, but it took us 1 hour 30 minutes to cover 32 kms.

Nh 9 should be on TEAM BHP Blacklisted roads.

Solapur has many hotels stay options, Just dial was able to give us LOTUS HOTEL & SURYA INTERNATIONAL.

Both were extremely expensive, but we found Hotel Ambassador Executive as soon as we entered solapur city from highway.
It is towards to the right side, and solapur bus stand is walk able distance from this hotel.

2800 rs for 2 night stay in a 5 bedded spacious room was total VFM.
Service was excellent and quick and room was clean with equally clean toilets.This hotel seemed well maintained, also had a garden restaurant in backyard.

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We slept a bit early that day since next day was going to be a bit hectic.

DAY 2 :

Destinations : Tuljapur , Akkalkot , Ganagapur ( Karnataka )
Hotel reception had warned us that doing 3 destinations in day would be hectic.

Also had heard horror stories about Bad to really horrible roads in Karnataka.

Having come this far we were not in mood to skip any of the above destinations.

They advised us to do only tuljapur and complete the rest of journey in a tavera or by MSRTC bus.

We decided to do Tuljapur and catch 10am bus for Ganagapur from solapur.
But we got up late and started @ 7am.

Road from Solapur till Tuljapur is exceptional.
Super smooth and very low traffic early in the day.
This section of 44 kms was gobbled up in 45 minutes.

Tuljapur is badly maintained , inspite of being a holy place of Goddess Tulja Bhavani its a poorly maintained place.Darshan took 45 minutes and after breakfast we were finally ready to proceed furthur.

It was 9.20 am and there was no way we were going to make it to solapur to catch the 10am bus.We decided to proceed to akkalkot and then proceed furthur in bus.

Akkalkot is famous for Shri Swami Samarth , who resided here.

The energy and positive vibes are to be experienced, since it was monday darshan took only 15 minutes.

Decided to have some chit chat with local tourist taxi drivers on road conditions to Ganagapur.

According to them, road till Ganagapur was definately motorable with only a 1 km bad stretch just after Maharashtra border.But they had apprehensions on looking at the car and advised me not to do it in a Nano.

Took a decision to continue on that road in our car.

Stopped enrooted at Modern Dhaba which is just 7-8 kms , good food and very airy and simple dhaba.

Also worth mention is very clean toilets in this road side Dhaba which was very surprising.This was not a trucking dhaba, and hence was flocked by families on way to Ganagapur.

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Roads till Karnataka border were decent.In fact such is the state at border, you do not realise when you have entered Karnataka.
No signboards nothing at all just a blank structure which must have had a signboard some ages ago.

Once in Karnataka, Nano was in for a challenge of a life time.
Huge , really huge craters which can easily gobble up Nano's 12" tyres.

I have never seen such horrible roads not even when i visited Ladakh.
We were down to 5kmph Crawl mode, and the best road to drive was Off road.

It was like that was the road which all the vehicles were using.
Trucks, trailers and everyone and anyone was not daring to use the actual road.

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Finally after 20 minutes the most horrible road yet driven by me was over.
Nano passed the real world ground clearance test by not scrapping its belly even once inpsite of being 5 people on board.

Any other hatch surely would have had a hit atleast once.
Roads after this section was better but narrow.

But since Nano is very underestimated, almost every one would get off road to make way for this little car.

It was challenging to drive since road was narrow and getting off road was risky since road had sharp edges and big drop to unsettle car at speeds.
People were looking in amusement whenever they had a look at the car and its MH03 registration.

Children as usual were very happy to see it and it was being cheered.
We turned left at Afzalpur and reached Ganagapur at 5.20pm

Tata Nano goes on a 970 Km pilgrimage-picture-032.jpg

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Ganagapur darshan was quick, but it was 5.45pm already.

We had to make it to that horrible section before dark.
We did manage that in time, this time i requested everyone to get off the car and i drove on that bad section alone.

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Fear of puncture was the topmost in mind, it was scary to think of fitting 135 section tyre at rear with 5 people.

But Nano was blessed and it covered that section for the 2nd time in one day without any issues.Took some pics near Maharashtra border and we reached solapur at 9 and crashed.

MH - KA Border

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DAY 3:

Visited the really well maintained ,simple and beautiful Siddheshwar temple which is in Siddeshwar lake.

After this we checked out of the hotel and proceeded towards Pandharpur.
Since traffic was light we managed to reach Pandharpur in 1 hour 45 minutes.

Again being Tuesday darshan took only 30 minutes, which was a miracle.
After hearty lunch and some shopping we started towards Pune.
It was 4.15pm and it was pedal to metal drive till pune.
Reached my home near Wakad exactly at 10.30pm with one long break and another short break.

Summary :
TATA NANO definately can handle long highway trips.

Taller gearing suits Highway speeds.

I was consistently able to keep the car in region on 70-80 on most roads

Did manage to touch 90kph on few occasions.

Total Kms covered - 970

The most interesting part, inspite of all the above , car averaged 21 kmpl. ( The same car average in region of 15-17 in city )

I still cant believe i did it, it got a tad bouncy for rear passengers on bumpy sections, but slowing down eased things for them

No complains of cramps due to fantastic seating position.
Also worth mention is the AUTOFORM seat covers which i installed from Reliance AutoZone for 4300rs.

Seat covers made a difference in comfort levels and the huge backseat pockets were fully utilized.

Car never skipped a beat and i cared for it during the entire journey
970kms might seem a lot, but we smartly took breaks after every 2 hours approximately.

Mr. Ratan Tata, i thank you from the bottom of my heart for making such a wonderful product.

This trip has inspired me to do more such journeys and the one coming next is visit to my native place near kolhapur.

If driven sensibly, Nano can do it as easily like any other car.
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Last edited by silverado : 13th June 2012 at 16:54.
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Old 13th June 2012, 17:03   #2
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Default Re: TATA NANO goes on 970 Kms pilgrimage

Congrats on the successful trip. Nano and generally Tata are severely underestimated. I once completed an 860km roundtrip from my home to Nashik (Vani), from there to Jejuri and from there back home, so I can understand the fatigue involved in such long journeys.

However getting the passengers out and then driving alone on a bad patch is kind of a No No with me. Was there any possible way you could have driven over the bad patch with the passengers still inside?

The FE too seems a bit on the lower side for such a long journey. Was this with AC all the time?

What's the recommended air pressure in the tyres, and how much had you set it to? Would increasing the pressure by one or two PSI help in a better FE?
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Old 13th June 2012, 17:10   #3
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Default Re: TATA NANO goes on 970 Kms pilgrimage

Quote:
Originally Posted by honeybee View Post
Congrats on the successful trip. Nano and generally Tata are severely underestimated. I once completed an 860km roundtrip from my home to Nashik (Vani), from there to Jejuri and from there back home, so I can understand the fatigue involved in such long journeys.

However getting the passengers out and then driving alone on a bad patch is kind of a No No with me. Was there any possible way you could have driven over the bad patch with the passengers still inside?

The FE too seems a bit on the lower side for such a long journey. Was this with AC all the time?

What's the recommended air pressure in the tyres, and how much had you set it to? Would increasing the pressure by one or two PSI help in a better FE?

Thanks

All passengers were in when we were going towards Ganagapur.
However on the return journey, it was cooler and atmosphere around was fantastic, they themselves offered to walk that 1 km section. And it was safe since no one was able to drive aboove 10kmph on that section

21 kmpl for me was great and i was constantly driving at hurried pace, AC was on 10-15% of time only.
Tyre pressure - 28 front and 30 rear, as displayed on front door sticker

Last edited by silverado : 13th June 2012 at 17:16.
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Old 13th June 2012, 17:33   #4
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Default Re: TATA NANO goes on 970 Kms pilgrimage

Congrats on a good trip silverado! I am not surprised that the Nano pulled through, its a fantastic product. But yes, people are surprised when I say the Nano can seat 5 people. Also small kids and toddlers keep pointing at the Nano with a wide smile.

At the beginning of your post you mentioned a 6 day holiday but ended at Day 3. I am a bit confused, but then it is only halfway through the week so I am a bit absent mentally
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Old 13th June 2012, 17:54   #5
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Default Re: TATA NANO goes on 970 Kms pilgrimage

Quote:
Originally Posted by silverado View Post
21 kmpl for me was great and i was constantly driving at hurried pace, AC was on 10-15% of time only.
Tyre pressure - 28 front and 30 rear, as displayed on front door sticker
People have reported getting 28kmpl or so on highway runs. Was it the number of people on board which affected the FE? By the way, is yours a 2012 model or an earlier one?

Which tyres are fitted on to it? I saw the stock Nano has JK tyres. Are there any other brands available as OE?

SelfDrive, he mentioned he had a six-day holiday, but he hasn't mentioned he planned to tour around for all those days, so my guess is he took three days to complete the journey and the other three to write up the travelogue?

Last edited by honeybee : 13th June 2012 at 17:56.
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Old 13th June 2012, 21:43   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by selfdrive View Post
Congrats on a good trip silverado! I am not surprised that the Nano pulled through, its a fantastic product. But yes, people are surprised when I say the Nano can seat 5 people. Also small kids and toddlers keep pointing at the Nano with a wide smile.

At the beginning of your post you mentioned a 6 day holiday but ended at Day 3. I am a bit confused, but then it is only halfway through the week so I am a bit absent mentally
Bala , honeybee got it right , i had planned the trip bang in middle of the 6 day holiday period that i have , hence it was a 3 day trip, with 2 days for rest after the trip and one day before the trip.

Quote:
Originally Posted by honeybee View Post
People have reported getting 28kmpl or so on highway runs. Was it the number of people on board which affected the FE? By the way, is yours a 2012 model or an earlier one?

Which tyres are fitted on to it? I saw the stock Nano has JK tyres. Are there any other brands available as OE?

SelfDrive, he mentioned he had a six-day holiday, but he hasn't mentioned he planned to tour around for all those days, so my guess is he took three days to complete the journey and the other three to write up the travelogue?
Mine is pre 2012 model fitted with Jk tyres, 2012 comes with MRF
Yes number of people affected mileage also road conditions ensured i had to frequently change speeds.

Writing travelogue took 2 hours only buddy

Last edited by Zappo : 14th June 2012 at 17:02. Reason: Back to back posts. Please read rule 5b. Next time infraction
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Old 14th June 2012, 13:51   #7
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Default Re: TATA NANO goes on 970 Kms pilgrimage

Quote:
Originally Posted by silverado View Post
TATA NANO goes on 970 Kms pilgrimage
Congrats on the trip,
Nice write-up and superb pictures,

Would love to know how Nano handled and how was the overtaking experience. The car should have been stable as it was loaded but that adversely affects acceleration, so I'm keen on that.

PS: you should use the 'Quote+' feature while quoting multiple posts.
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Old 14th June 2012, 14:01   #8
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Great travelogue. How did you fit the luggage of 5 people? There is no boot right?

Good to see nano covering long distances safely
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Old 14th June 2012, 14:15   #9
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Default Re: TATA NANO goes on 970 Kms pilgrimage

Quote:
Originally Posted by Slick View Post
Congrats on the trip,
Nice write-up and superb pictures,

Would love to know how Nano handled and how was the overtaking experience. The car should have been stable as it was loaded but that adversely affects acceleration, so I'm keen on that.

PS: you should use the 'Quote+' feature while quoting multiple posts.
Here you go slick! Definately Muti-quoting from now on.

Handling was as good for a Tall boy, but i never pushed her hard in the corners.

Overtaking took time on NH9 specially , on rest of the roads it was ok since traffic was sparse.

Car was stable since it was loaded.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ani_meher View Post
Great travelogue. How did you fit the luggage of 5 people? There is no boot right?

Good to see nano covering long distances safely
There is 80ltr boot in Nano.

Please look at one of the picture of hotel room, you will find the bags which we carried, since it was just a 2 night 3 day trip, we decided to only take what the little dicky could accomodate, and beleive me it was more than sufficient.

Apart from that we had a huge basket which we could easily fit in space ahead of front left passenger , in which we had eatables and water.
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Old 14th June 2012, 15:03   #10
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Default Re: TATA NANO goes on 970 Kms pilgrimage

Good to see people like you coming forward and showing everyone Nano's potential. Its like any other regular car and can take any trip/journey like any other car. Congrats.

You reminded me of my own 850km journey in my Nano from Delhi-Shimla-Delhi around two years back. Mine is also golden color Lx. Every one followed it back then wherever it went.
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Old 15th June 2012, 21:38   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kkg View Post
Good to see people like you coming forward and showing everyone Nano's potential. Its like any other regular car and can take any trip/journey like any other car. Congrats.

You reminded me of my own 850km journey in my Nano from Delhi-Shimla-Delhi around two years back. Mine is also golden color Lx. Every one followed it back then wherever it went.
Thanks , I have been doing occasional nearby highway trips with 5 people on board, but this trip was really exceptional for all of us since it created a very deep bond with the car.

I managed to check coolant levels yesterday and they dont seem to have been reduced.

Also a correction that need to make here is , my car is shodded with MRF tyres and not JK as i had stated earlier.

There is one guy who has done 2300km trip from mumbai in his nano, found his story on Nano diaries on tatanano website.
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Old 15th June 2012, 22:21   #12
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Default Re: TATA NANO goes on 970 Kms pilgrimage

The first travelogue in the forum featuring a Nano. We may now see many, I hope.
Keep revving.
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Old 16th June 2012, 11:20   #13
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Default Re: Tata Nano goes on a 970 Km pilgrimage

Congrata, silverdo on your journey. I believe that this will increase the trust on tata nano.
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Old 16th June 2012, 12:41   #14
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Default Re: Tata Nano goes on a 970 Km pilgrimage

Really quite inspiring. My next trip out is going to be in my Nano instead of the Jazz !!
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Old 16th June 2012, 13:53   #15
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Default Re: TATA NANO goes on 970 Kms pilgrimage

Quote:
Originally Posted by rajeev k View Post
The first travelogue in the forum featuring a Nano. We may now see many, I hope.
Keep revving.

Somehow you seemed to have missed mine posted two years back.

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...-all-well.html (Delhi-Shimla-Delhi. In my Nano called Vikram. ALL IS WELL.)
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