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Old 22nd June 2008, 01:05   #1
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Default 260 kms Round Trip for lunch: Delhi - Neemrana on Palio MJD!

Mr H V Kumar, Mr Tirthankar, this travelogue is dedicated to enthusiasts like you, not just becuase you travel the way you do, but because you document it the way you do and write it for us on this forum! I am a bachcha in front of Gurus like you!
It was another Saturday. No office, but 2-3 meetings, leaving a large part of the day free. With some jugglery, I could squeeze in that little "outstation" trip if I wanted. Why not Neemrana? Not too far (about 130 kms from the house), nice place that can be seen in a couple of hours and good food at the Neemrana Fort Hotel. Anyway, I had been itching to take the new car on the highway and waiting to get a break from work.
But there was a problem. I was alone. And not a very experienced driver. Out of a total of 50,000 kms of driving, experience with four wheelers is just about 7000 kms or so and almost totally city driving.
Firstly, would I be able to manage a 250-plus km highway ride alone? I have driven to Manesar, Palwal and Greater Noida but would it be wiser to take another more experienced driver along? What about some company? But where would I get them at this stage?
Then I remembered my sister's car at home, and just borrowed the adline: "Let's Go." And so I went. Drove all the way to Neemrana, and back.
The idea was not to set any sort of record. I was just trying to polish my highway driving skills and assess my stamina and my concentration. While I didn't take any long breaks (12 minutes at McDonald's, Manesar and 5 mins at NH-8 Neemrana to take some photographs of the car), I drove at a pace I was comfortable with. Two of the longest stretches of about 70-75 kms of non-stop driving on NH-8 got me average speeds of only 65-70 kmph. The rest of the travel intervals are too small, or disturbed, or through the city to discuss the averages of. Interestingly, the highest average speed I could achieve was between KM24 and km48 of NH-8 Expressway (basically all through Gurgaon): 13 minutes, 17.7 kms and average of 81.7 kmph. I even managed 42.5 kmph average speed between Ashram and Gurgaon between 9.50 AM and 10.30 AM!! Thank God it was Saturday!
The return journey after Gurgaon is not worth mentioning because it had too many stoppages for meetings etc. Please note that all speeds, timings are Actual Travel times. Basically I entered times based on when I switched on and switched off the ignition. Or at the Toll Booths.
About the car. The Palio Multijet needs better rubber. Period. I could feel that. Although I was not testing the limits, still it created a psychological barrier. No ABS, no airbags and 165/13/80 tyres are not a great combo for safety. I have done about 15 trips on NH-8 to Jaipur as a passenger in Octavias, Innovas, Indicas, Esteems, Santros and Swift. My worst experience was in the back seat of a Santro at 130 kmph! None of the others were scary, even the Swift or the Indica. The best was probably the Innova, as it was a shade better through potholes than the Octi.
I would say my experience was as good if not better than that of the Swift. But that was two years ago, so maybe I am wrong. Highest Speed I touched today was 130 kmph on two occassions on the speedo.5th gear and 3000 rpm. Car was good for more with a 4800 rpm redline. Most of the time, I was cruising on 5th at 70-90 kmph. If you want to retain power to overtake or speed up, one has to move to 4th gear below 65 kmph. Traffic at around noon time on NH-8 is not for speeding. Car retained its composure even at three-digit speeds. This car is a great cruiser, probably the best in its class. Everyone who knows NH-8 will tell you of the small potholes about 2 inches deeps all through which is continously being filles by NHAI, only to come up again. The same potholes at 30 kmph may make more sounds, but at 100 kmph, the car glides through them. Sweeping curves at 90-100 kmph were a pleasure.
However, the good thing with this car is the way it can accelerate from 80 kmph-120 kmph when the Indica / Sumo / Tavera / Qualis thinks you have no right to be in front of it just because it can go at 90 kmph when you are at 80 kmph. (Generally these guys don't go beyond 90 kmph because they say it reduces F E drastically). Right from the beginning of the expressway, it was a pleasure to watch the same guy disappear in who was trying to honk the life out of you, a few seconds ago, disappear in the mirrors when you floor it! Even a few sedan drivers, mostly NHCs had a few surprises in store! Perhaps they don't realise that a 77BHP sedan is not such a scorcher and every "Stile" hatchback is not a Palio Stile 1.1! I LOVE TURBOs!
NH-8 is a familiar stretch to most people in the NCR. The road to the Neemrana, especially the last 250 metres is just an excuse for a road. Take it easy out there. The fort is a beauty, although with restoration, conservation and a hotel in an old fort, it's a bit of a hotch-potch. But not something that a non-architect is likely to notice! The place is amazingly restive. And the right way to see it is to go in the afternoon and come back the next afternoon. It's a small place which can be seen in 2 hours and the rest of the time should be a good restorative. It's a bit expensive, though. The buffet lunch is Rs.600 plus tax for one. The room rent is as much as 4-star I suppose. That's the catch. But, since one would hardly spend more than 2 days there, it's great for an experience of Royal Rajputana living!
I took 115 photos, some while driving. Am posting only a few, keeping in view the interests of BHP-ians. Don't miss the vintage Opel Olympia, in the Royal Parking Lot!
I will not bore you with too many details. I have uploaded my Log in PDF format, which I managed to fill somehow while crawling through the queues for toll or waiting for the one-minute idle before shutting off the engine or after starting up. Although a small trip, a log is a must. No clue about F E, until the next tankful. However, the needle touched half-mark atleast 50 - 60 kms after its usual reading on the tripmeter. That means it has improved by about 20% or so from the regular 15-16 kmpl in the city. Will update, watch this space.
And now for the pictures...
Attached Thumbnails
260 kms Round Trip for lunch: Delhi - Neemrana on Palio MJD!-img_0015.jpg  

260 kms Round Trip for lunch: Delhi - Neemrana on Palio MJD!-img_0024.jpg  

260 kms Round Trip for lunch: Delhi - Neemrana on Palio MJD!-img_0025.jpg  

260 kms Round Trip for lunch: Delhi - Neemrana on Palio MJD!-img_0027.jpg  

260 kms Round Trip for lunch: Delhi - Neemrana on Palio MJD!-img_0028.jpg  

260 kms Round Trip for lunch: Delhi - Neemrana on Palio MJD!-img_0031.jpg  

260 kms Round Trip for lunch: Delhi - Neemrana on Palio MJD!-img_0037.jpg  

260 kms Round Trip for lunch: Delhi - Neemrana on Palio MJD!-img_0085.jpg  

260 kms Round Trip for lunch: Delhi - Neemrana on Palio MJD!-img_0049.jpg  

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Old 22nd June 2008, 01:16   #2
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Nice pictures Architect, did you visit the "BAOLI" next to the fort ? this is the perfect weather to go to sucha place.
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Old 22nd June 2008, 01:19   #3
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Default More Photos of the trip

Just added some more photos
Attached Thumbnails
260 kms Round Trip for lunch: Delhi - Neemrana on Palio MJD!-img_0094.jpg  

260 kms Round Trip for lunch: Delhi - Neemrana on Palio MJD!-img_0095.jpg  

260 kms Round Trip for lunch: Delhi - Neemrana on Palio MJD!-img_0102.jpg  

260 kms Round Trip for lunch: Delhi - Neemrana on Palio MJD!-img_0107.jpg  

260 kms Round Trip for lunch: Delhi - Neemrana on Palio MJD!-img_0109.jpg  

260 kms Round Trip for lunch: Delhi - Neemrana on Palio MJD!-img_0113.jpg  

260 kms Round Trip for lunch: Delhi - Neemrana on Palio MJD!-img_0116.jpg  

Attached Files
File Type: pdf Neemrana_21_06_2008.pdf (85.8 KB, 494 views)
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Old 22nd June 2008, 01:24   #4
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One last shot, a reminder of the beautiful place!
Attached Thumbnails
260 kms Round Trip for lunch: Delhi - Neemrana on Palio MJD!-img_0076.jpg  

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Old 22nd June 2008, 01:44   #5
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Wonderful review!! Thanks Architect.
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Old 22nd June 2008, 18:05   #6
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Very nice photos. And a very good detailed review.

'' Let's Go in a Palio Diesel ''
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Old 22nd June 2008, 18:24   #7
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Nice Photographs. In one of the photos, saw an aircraft, which airport is it ?
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Old 22nd June 2008, 18:57   #8
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Nice travelogue. Good way to spend an afternoon over an expensive buffet lunch. Good pictures too. Also, probably one of the first outing stints outlined in a palio MJD. What FE did you observe?
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Old 22nd June 2008, 19:04   #9
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Nice travelogue, Architect!

"Let's Go, Palio Style" seems good!

Seems like you had a lot of camel traffic. And how did you manage to recollect those average speeds in between those short distances!?

And what was the trips FE?

Edit:
Quote:
Originally Posted by mobike008 View Post
Nice travelogue. Good way to spend an afternoon over an expensive buffet lunch. Good pictures too. Also, probably one of the first outing stints outlined in a palio MJD. What FE did you observe?
Yeah, @ 600Rs what all were served? Camel meat? And oh, Mobike already asked the question about FE!

Last edited by HappyWheels : 22nd June 2008 at 19:07.
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Old 22nd June 2008, 19:12   #10
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Nice travelogue and photos and nice way of going out too. A 260 km drive for having lunch ;-)
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Old 22nd June 2008, 19:13   #11
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Nice lunch trip

Lunch buffet is 500 bucks for residents and 600 for non-residents. And it is a luxury hotel with some great food. How is it expensive?
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Old 23rd June 2008, 00:03   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aZa View Post
Nice pictures Architect, did you visit the "BAOLI" next to the fort ? this is the perfect weather to go to sucha place.
Thanks aZa. Saw the signboard, but was already getting late for meeting back in Gurgaon. Had to rush. Better to drive slower than to see more places. Maybe on the next lunch!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Proxima View Post
Wonderful review!! Thanks Architect.
Quote:
Originally Posted by vkochar View Post
Very nice photos. And a very good detailed review.

'' Let's Go in a Palio Diesel ''
Quote:
Originally Posted by snaronikar View Post
Nice travelogue and photos and nice way of going out too. A 260 km drive for having lunch ;-)
Thanks a lot. Photos are from my Canon Powershot A550. How I wish I had a DSLR and a wide angle. It would be a totally different story then. It was a cloudy day, and the greenery is appearing particularly verdant. Good light for architectural photography of this kind. No hard shadows, greens looking their best against the stone, or vice versa.

Quote:
Originally Posted by raghu.t.k View Post
Nice Photographs. In one of the photos, saw an aircraft, which airport is it ?
Haha.... that's the point of the photo. That plane's sitting there in the middle of a campus of a large building. Couldn't get any details. Either, it's a belly landed / crashed plane or it's been brought to teach aeronautical engineering to students. Didn't stop to enquire, just clicked. Some mysteries are best left unsolved, let the suspense be.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mobike008 View Post
Nice travelogue. Good way to spend an afternoon over an expensive buffet lunch. Good pictures too. Also, probably one of the first outing stints outlined in a palio MJD. What FE did you observe?
Quote:
Originally Posted by HappyWheels View Post
Nice travelogue, Architect!

And how did you manage to recollect those average speeds in between those short distances!?

And what was the trips FE?
Please look at my log. It's attached as a PDF in the second post. I have recorded things very accurately and religiously noted down time and odo readings at every Toll booth and everytime I switched on / shut off the ignition. It's self explanatory.

Sorry no F E figures yet and no way of calculating exactly. I am still between tankfuls. But I have written the impact in the review.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam Kapasi View Post
Nice lunch trip

Lunch buffet is 500 bucks for residents and 600 for non-residents. And it is a luxury hotel with some great food. How is it expensive?
Relatively speaking its not very expensive. But, It's not your regular McDonald's either. Mind you, the cost of the lunch and the tickets to the fort is atleast 300 bucks more than my estimated fuel cost for the trip.
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Old 27th June 2008, 00:03   #13
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Trip F E was 19 kmpl but hardly a very empty expressway or highway.
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Old 27th June 2008, 01:08   #14
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Very nice travelogue and great pics too. It reminds me of a short round trip (~300kms) I did in a friday evening with a couple of my friends in office, in my Palio 1.2. We went to a place called Shaktigarh, famous for its sweets and snacks, along NH2, from Kolkata, towards Durgapur.
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Old 27th June 2008, 13:45   #15
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Wow awesome lunch trip. I loved your car color. Brilliant choice and looks absolutely fabulous in the rains. Trust me i as i was stuck behind it in a jam in the rain and couldnt stop admiring it.
I was like here is a beauty and i am stuck in this rickety Rickshaw
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