Go Back   Team-BHP > Buckle Up > Travelogues


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 2nd September 2013, 22:34   #1
Team-BHP Support
 
Rudra Sen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 10,404
Thanked: 4,092 Times
Default Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze

Honda's 4th Drive to Discover series starts exactly from where they ended their 3rd Drive to Discover, Thiruvananthapuram.

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-first.jpg

3rd drive was with Honda Brio http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...nthapuram.html (In a Honda Brio : Kochi - Munnar - Thiruvananthapuram)
and this time it is with their trump card, Honda Amaze diesel.

Honda has taken its own sweet time to bring i-DTEC in a diesel loving market. A little too late, or just in time, only time will tell.

I’m not used to diesel engine and my impression about this EARTH DREAMS technology engine will be the last paragraph of this travelogue.

For a detailed Honda Amaze review please go through http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/offici...al-review.html (Honda Amaze : Official Review)

Last edited by Rudra Sen : 6th September 2013 at 05:56.
Rudra Sen is offline   (10) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 2nd September 2013, 22:45   #2
Team-BHP Support
 
Rudra Sen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 10,404
Thanked: 4,092 Times
Default re: Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze

22nd August, 2013

4th Discovery Drive route (leg one):

Thiruvananthapuram > Kanyakumari > Rameswaram > Pondicherry > Chennai > Vijaywada > Vizag > Puri > Bhubaneswar > Kolkata.

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-ecrmap.jpg

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-dealer.jpg

Our journey starts from Peninsular Honda. An hour of waiting for press coverage, Mr. Jnaneswar Sen,
Sr Vice President – Sales & Marketing, Honda Siel, flags us off for the first leg of the trip.

4 cars together through narrow and congested roads in Kerala can be quite exciting. And add to that, those KSRTC buses heighten experience.
They practically own the road. I’m sure it’ll be the same all over the country but for Kerala buses it’s my way or the highway.
We start losing each other frequently and end up waiting to regroup in absolutely uninteresting places.

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-waiting.jpg

Getting out of the city limit takes us more than few hours. Thiruvananthapuram to Kanyakumari is roughly 100km.
Normally it should take little more than two hours but keep additional hour and half to wriggle out from chaotic traffic there.
Sky looks pretty clean and the climate is hot to match that typical southern part of India in August. Amaze has an extremely efficient AC and Honda claims to have unique heat absorbing front windscreen in this car. I would like to believe this. Nowhere in our trip AC fan regulator knob has gone above 2.

We reach Kanyakumari around 1.30pm and by the time all the cars get parking, it’s 2pm. I wanted to have all the cars with Vivekananda Rock & Valluvar Statue as backdrop for a photograph. According to the locals, another km of road heading east can take us next to the sea shore.

Time is limited and all of us are super hungry. All I can do is to abandon my ambition and head out to have super bengali food.
Well, this is not my idea but the group is insistent to have bengali food.

Post lunch I’m desperately looking for a place get a picture of the cars. Driving down the jetty road and there’s not enough place to park all the cars. Going by our itinerary, we need to drive 325km more to reach Rameswaram tonight.

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-pano.jpg
Rudra Sen is offline   (18) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 2nd September 2013, 22:51   #3
Team-BHP Support
 
Rudra Sen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 10,404
Thanked: 4,092 Times
Default re: Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-group1.jpg

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-sunset.jpg

We reach Ramanathapuram around 8.15pm. From here to Rameswaram is another 57km. During daytime it should take around an hour plus and minus. And in total darkness?.. Well, you know.

My companion for this drive and TBHP senior member N. Devdath (covering this drive for their portal) decides to call our national GPS and Dbhpian hvkumar for some suggestion.
Within no time HVK gets back with a TBHPIAN name Harshavartan from Ramanathapuram! Talk about TBHP nation wide network!
He suggests a few places to stay and also says that he’s ready to meet us tonight after we check into a hotel.

Harshavartan I am sorry, we could not meet.

After checking out probable acommodation we decide to drive down to Rameswaram.
According to the hotel originally booked, food will be served hot on our arrival. What a consolation!

We reach hotel Daiwik at 10.30pm. Rameswaram being a Hindu temple town, hotel is totally vegeterian with 18 TV channels (from their offering) transmitting relegious programmes.
Time to crash out. Tomorrow is another long day.

Last edited by Rudra Sen : 3rd September 2013 at 20:35.
Rudra Sen is offline   (18) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 2nd September 2013, 23:01   #4
Team-BHP Support
 
Rudra Sen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 10,404
Thanked: 4,092 Times
Default re: Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze

23rd August, 2013

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-hotel.jpg

Today, convoy will leave for Pondicherry and we've to cover a distance of 400km plus. According to the map, travel time is 6 hours or more depending on the road and traffic condition.
One can probably cut that time given a Golden Quadrilateral kind of highway. But today we're again getting back to East Coast road that is essentially a two lane road without a median strip.
Add to that with hundreds of villages, unruly traffic and four legged creatures all over. This can surely take us way more than 6 hours to Pondicherry.
But that shouldn’t stop us to explore Rameswaram for few hours.

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-temple1.jpg

Most interesting place around here (at least for me) is Dhanuskodi. 18km from Rameswaram, sea beach greets you with incredibly rich aquamarine blue water.
Depending on the time of the day and sunlight, colour turns deeper. Swimming or taking bath is strictly not allowed here due to the nature of the beach.

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-beach1.jpg

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-beach2.jpg

Last edited by Rudra Sen : 3rd September 2013 at 10:14.
Rudra Sen is offline   (15) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 2nd September 2013, 23:19   #5
Team-BHP Support
 
Rudra Sen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 10,404
Thanked: 4,092 Times
Default re: Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze

Hindu scriptures says that at the request of Vibeeshana, brother of Ravana and ally of Ram, Rama broke the Sethu with one end of his bow and hence the name Dhanushkodi, Dhanush meaning Bow and Kodi meaning end. It is also said that Rama marked this spot for Setu with one end of his famous bow. Bath in holy Sethu at the junction of the two seas normally precedes the pilgrimage to Rameswaram. A series of rocks and islets found in a line are shown as remnants of the ancient Setu also called as Rama Bridge.
It is said that Pilgrimage to Kashi will be completed only after the worship at Rameswaram besides a holy bath in Dhanushkodi at the confluence of Mahodadhi (Bay of Bengal) and Ratnakara (Indian Ocean). Setu is the Sanskrit word to denote a bridge or causeway. It has now acquired a special significance to mean the bridge across the ocean constructed by Ram to reach Lanka.
– Source Wikipedia

From here one can take a 4X4 Mahindra FC van or jeep to travel few more km to reach Dhanuskodi end point. I have never seen so many FC van together.
I suppose modus operandi is pretty simple. FC vans are available plenty in Tamilnadu. Pick up one in ‘as is where is’ condition.
Get entire differential/transfer case setup. Add a tin box as body with 7 to 8 sitting arrangement and you’re ready to charge 2000/- per trip.

No cars are allowed here without 4X4. Surface is a spread of soft sand, sandy slushy waterbed and hard flats. That said, we have not seen any private vehicle there either.

Dhanukodi is situated at the south – east of Pambam. Once upon a time it was small but bustling town. The town had been an important commercial centre with a railway station, a customs office, post and telegraphs office, two medical institutions, one railway hospital, a panchayat union dispensary, a higher elementary school and port offices. A port had been functioning since 1 March 1914. A dilapidated church, parts of the railway track and the Puduroad railway station and the ruins of a Vinayaka temple are all that remain of the town.
On 23 December 1964, a huge storm surge struck the town of Dhanuskodi on the south-eastern edge of the island, submerging the town and overturning the Pamban-Dhanuskodi passenger train killing all 150 passengers on board. The town, an important transit point between India and Ceylon, was completely destroyed and has not been rebuilt since.
– Source wikipedia

M&M FC vans.

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-mm.jpg

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-dkbeach1.jpg

Take a boat from this point and sail straight. You'll reach Sri Lanka covering less than 30km

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-dkbeach2.jpg

This was the Dhanushkodi railway station before 1964 storm

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-station.jpg

(bay)watch tower

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-tower.jpg

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-dk3.jpg

My suggestion for those who are looking to explore this place, go early in the morning when the light is soft.


Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-fishermen.jpg

Last edited by Rudra Sen : 3rd September 2013 at 17:58.
Rudra Sen is offline   (20) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 2nd September 2013, 23:32   #6
Team-BHP Support
 
Rudra Sen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 10,404
Thanked: 4,092 Times
Default re: Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze

Around 1pm we're on our way back to Ramanathapurm.
We’ve to have our lunch and head towards Pondicherry but surely not before taking some pictures of the cars in those fascinating landscapes.

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-beachgrp1.jpg

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-beachgrp2.jpg

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-beachgrp3.jpg

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-beachgrp4.jpg

Give me a hammock and I can spend my whole day here.

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-trees.jpg

Pamban bridge with our convoy.

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-bridge.jpg

From Ramanathapuram we take a right to get onto East Coast Road.
We are not using any GPS because we don't need to. Strict instruction from HV Kumar has to be followed to the tee.
We convey this message to all other three cars as there are many diversions waiting to misguide any new driver on that road.
Despite this clear instruction, three cars behind us somehow manage to take some other way. This has to happen otherwise where is fun of traveling together?
East Coast Road is normally congested and gets really thick after Nagapattinam. Average speed comes down drastically on those dark roads.
Around 8.15pm we reach GRT Grand hotel in Pondicherry. Other three cars arrive at about 10.30pm.

To know more about Kanyakumari and Rameswaram go through http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...re-5-days.html (Dizzy Drive :Bangalore-Madurai-Kanyakumari-Rameshwaram-Bangalore in 5 days)

Last edited by Rudra Sen : 6th September 2013 at 18:04.
Rudra Sen is offline   (18) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 2nd September 2013, 23:47   #7
Team-BHP Support
 
Rudra Sen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 10,404
Thanked: 4,092 Times
Default re: Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze

24th August, 2013

Today we’ve comparatively short distance to cover and end the first leg of Honda Drive to Discover 4.
It's 150km to Chennai to travel where the cars get their due service for next day’s 2nd leg journey.

After breakfast we checkout of the hotel. It is time to capture a little of Pondicherry with the cars.

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-pondy1.jpg

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-pondy2.jpg

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-pondy3.jpg

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-pondy4.jpg

Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze-pondy5.jpg

From Pondicherry to Chennai drive is fairly clean. But we’re not going to Chennai city. We stop at Taj Fisherman’s Cove hotel, Covelong to handover the cars. From here we leave for the airport.

Finally, the Honda Amaze diesel I drove.

i-DTEC EARTH DREAMS is here to create a serious dent in our mid size sedan market.
Please do not take this as an oracle from the old man of the forum. After almost 1000km of driving, here are my views.

25.8kpl fuel economy rating is something I am going to believe to a great extent. On the highway with very light foot driving, this figure can surely match or come very close. Our car has returned an average of 22.5kpl with fast paced driving now and then. Pleasantly surprise to see green ECO light on above 3 digits speed. Segment best power of 99bhp will never allow you to go out of breath. Engine does not like to be revved hard but you will never feel the need for it at any point. I have taken the car to a fairly high speed without any protest from the engine.

Air conditioner is superb. I do not know how much of that unique heat absorbing front windscreen is contributing to this efficiency though.
Steering is nice to grip. On the highway steering weighs up predictably well after EPS cuts off. Suspension is good enough to soak up most of the road impurities but in this category we have seen better performance than this. There is no nasty surprise from the handling and ride remains compliant with curvy roads. Cannot say much about the back seat feel because I have not tried that. Slick gear shifting is always Honda’s strong point and there is no variation here. Stock tyres do their job pretty well. Fatter tyres may help you to get a grip of your choice but at the cost of compromising on fuel efficiency. Stock headlamps are OK and you can do without a higher wattage replacement if highway driving is not on your priority list. Clutch feels perfectly fine for a diesel motor. There is enough room for a dead pedal but this I suppose this is one of the obvious steps to cut cost.

Now comes my biggest complaint to Honda.

> How much does it cost to do a proper NVH treatment for a car of this size?
> How much extra weight of insulation/sound deadening material car is going to carry to hamper your excellent fuel efficiency figure?
> According to your technical experts aluminium engines are more noisy than the iron block ones. This is not been addressed because of incremental cost?

I would be really happy to know your explanation. And this NVH issue can be a large fly in your soup in the future.
A car with so many great qualities should not be a deal breaker for a small issue like this.

Disclaimer: Honda invited Team-BHP for the Amaze Drive. They covered all the expenses for this driving event.

Last edited by Rudra Sen : 3rd September 2013 at 20:44.
Rudra Sen is offline   (25) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 3rd September 2013, 22:36   #8
GTO
Team-BHP Support
 
GTO's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Bombay
Posts: 47,735
Thanked: 89,286 Times
Default Re: Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze

Thread moved from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section) to Travelogues. Thanks for sharing!
GTO is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 4th September 2013, 07:36   #9
Team-BHP Support
 
ampere's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 15,602
Thanked: 8,592 Times
Default Re: Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze

One of the few clean beaches in India. And yes as you say, one has to go early to get that soft light. One of the best beaches I have seen apart from the few hidden ones on the Konkan Coast.
Daiwik is one of the few good hotels that have come up in Rameshwaram recently.


PS : And I am not even qualified to comment or say one anything on the snaps. I just stare. Esp the wide angles...

Last edited by ampere : 4th September 2013 at 07:39.
ampere is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 4th September 2013, 09:10   #10
Senior - BHPian
 
selfdrive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Pune
Posts: 2,698
Thanked: 2,113 Times
Default Re: Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze

Great account of your drive there for this leg. I was hoping for some more pictures from Kanyakumari, but those from Dhanushkodi more than compensated for this.

The link for the 3rd discover to drive is given, but I have not found anything about the first two drives. Also, if there is a 5th or nth discover to drive, where can we volunteer?! Or if I see a set of these cars, I will probably just follow them in my own car

Your review of the NVH being a sore point in the Amaze is bang on the money. But I am not sure if something can be done in the aftermarket for this issue? Perhaps other bhpians can contribute.

If Honda took so many years for a diesel engine, who knows how many years will pass by for this NVH issue. or perhaps it will be sorted out in the diesel versions of Jazz and/ or City which are rumoured to be introduced in the next year or two.

Last edited by selfdrive : 4th September 2013 at 09:12.
selfdrive is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 4th September 2013, 10:42   #11
Team-BHP Support
 
Rudra Sen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 10,404
Thanked: 4,092 Times
Default Re: Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze

Quote:
Originally Posted by selfdrive View Post
The link for the 3rd discover to drive is given, but I have not found anything about the first two drives.
That's because TBHP was invited for 3rd Discovery Drive. Previous drives were probably with other people from various medias.
Rudra Sen is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 4th September 2013, 10:56   #12
Senior - BHPian
 
speedsatya's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: bangalore/manga
Posts: 3,161
Thanked: 706 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rudra Sen View Post
24th August, 2013



Now comes my biggest complaint to Honda.

> How much does it cost to do a proper NVH treatment for a car of this size?
> How much extra weight of insulation/sound deadening material car is going to carry to hamper your excellent fuel efficiency figure?
> According to your technical experts aluminium engines are more noisy than the iron block ones. This is not been addressed because of incremental cost?

I would be really happy to know your explanation. And this NVH issue can be a large fly in your soup in the future.
A car with so many great qualities should not be a deal breaker for a small issue like .
The juddering vibration that you see when turning off the engine isn't something very pleasant. Also , I would have wanted to see backlit switches for the headlight leveller and the PW switches.

Fit n finish also isn't very great when you looking the panel gaps ( both inside and outside ).


Other than these , I am more than happy with my diesel amaze.
speedsatya is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 4th September 2013, 13:43   #13
BHPian
 
vivekji05's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Ernakulam
Posts: 262
Thanked: 76 Times
Default Re: Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze

Was looking forward to your photos and report Rudra San. Came out brilliant although I feel you could have done better if our photo sessions were longer and timed better.

Last edited by vivekji05 : 4th September 2013 at 13:46.
vivekji05 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 4th September 2013, 14:00   #14
Senior - BHPian
 
jacs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Kochi
Posts: 1,464
Thanked: 715 Times
Default Re: Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze

Just saw a new thread by Rudraji's and did not have patience, quickly scrolled and enjoyed the photographs. Lovely shots they are. Now I need to read the text .

My friend just told me he wanted to drive over Pamban bridge and this TL landed today!

Last edited by Rudra Sen : 4th September 2013 at 15:46. Reason: typo correction
jacs is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 4th September 2013, 14:19   #15
Distinguished - BHPian
 
laluks's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 5,805
Thanked: 7,799 Times
Default Re: Amazing Discovery Drive: Thiruvananthapuram to Chennai in a Honda Amaze

In the middle of a theatrical corporate discussion and Rudra da's log makes my day

You stayed at Le Duplex in Pondy? Their roof top seems quite interesting.

Rudra da, any more pictures of Trivandrum? Being my home town wanted to see it through your eyes
laluks is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Honda Amaze: Oil leak, engine seized! A bad experience with Honda service parimal_g Technical Stuff 165 28th March 2017 22:45
Amazing Goa in a Honda Amaze S-MT Diesel amazingGuru67 Travelogues 12 15th October 2013 13:28
In a Honda Brio : Kochi - Munnar - Thiruvananthapuram benbsb29 Travelogues 16 21st September 2012 16:53
Decent Accommodation at Thiruvananthapuram ? Suggestion pl. shapath Route / Travel Queries 1 30th December 2009 21:15


All times are GMT +5.5. The time now is 19:23.

Copyright 2000 - 2017, Team-BHP.com
Proudly powered by E2E Networks