An ode to the en­chanted world of au­to­mo­biles and mo­tor­cy­cles that is haven to those born with a mav­er­ick streak

Evo India - - Contents - By BI­JOY KUMAR Y

It’s birth­day time for evo In­dia! Per­son­ally, I am thank­ful to Sirish and evo for giv­ing me a chance to get back to writ­ing after a hia­tus of almost two and half years. As you can imag­ine, it is not easy to write a col­umn for a spank­ing new au­to­mo­tive pub­li­ca­tion – and more so when you rep­re­sent a car maker. My life as Chief of Ad­ven­ture at Mahin­dra is good fun and I can gen­er­ate many good sto­ries, but there is a limit to how much you can plug your company and ac­tiv­i­ties, right? But over the months I think I have man­aged to iden­tify gen­eral top­ics that I could gloss over and my apolo­gies if a few ad­di­tional pinches of Thar or Ad­ven­ture made up most of the text mat­ter on oc­ca­sions.

There is a fa­mous line by David E Davis Jr, of Road and Track and Au­to­mo­bile mag­a­zine fame, which I quote freely on any apt oc­ca­sion. “Au­to­mo­tive jour­nal­ism is all about driv­ing great cars to great places, to meet great peo­ple”, or some­thing like that. To me, that has been the lit­mus test for ev­ery­thing we did at BS Mo­tor­ing dur­ing the 15 or so years that I spent there. “If it ain’t fun to drive, it won’t be fun to read”, claims another school of jour­nal­ism. But then with 99.9 per cent of all cars that are pro­duced and sold in In­dia be­ing front-en­gined, front-wheel drive hatch­backs, one wouldn’t be able to fill pages of a mag­a­zine. The point I am driv­ing at is that evo In­dia has man­aged to es­tab­lish a niche in a coun­try which does not have 100 years of au­to­mo­tive his­tory – and that in it­self is a big achieve­ment. We don’t have gen­er­a­tions of brand pa­tron­age, rac­ing her­itage and en­thu­si­asm in­cu­ba­tors of any kind, to spawn hordes of au­to­mo­tive fa­nat­ics who will lap up any­thing that a ded­i­cated pub­li­ca­tion can dish out. But still, evo In­dia has done quite well over the last year. De­spite the per capita Fer­rari ra­tio be­ing poor, evo In­dia has suc­ceeded in sell­ing monthly edi­tions with su­per­cars on the cov­ers. Cheers to that.

Do you know what makes a good au­to­mo­tive pub­li­ca­tion? It is the peo­ple who put to­gether the stuff. You have got to love cars and mo­tor­cy­cles first, then you should be able to drive or ride them to save your life and then comes the most im­por­tant facet of a mo­tor­ing jour­nal­ist – you should be able to tell a story ev­ery time you hit a key­board. If you have the above three in your skill set inventory, I am cer­tain that Sirish Chan­dran has a job for you.

Un­for­tu­nately our in­dus­try has ac­com­mo­dated a few who desperately lack, at times alarm­ingly more than one of th­ese three tenets of au­to­mo­tive jour­nal­ism. And that re­sults in es­sen­tially bor­ing com­mu­ni­ca­tion that can­not con­vey the spirit of mag­nif­i­cent ma­chines that make glo­ri­ous noises and move at great speeds. Thank­fully evo

You have got to love cars and mo­tor­cy­cles first and tell a story ev­ery time you hit the key­board

In­dia has some of the finest writ­ers and pho­tog­ra­phers on its roster – some of them, like Sirish and Ouseph, I know well enough to say that if you of­fer them a choice of a night out with Megan Fox or an As­ton Martin Rapide on a wind­ing road, both will choose the lat­ter. (Or so I think!).

The fact that you are read­ing this mag­a­zine and you have reached the last para­graph of this par­tic­u­lar col­umn means that you have more than a ‘nor­mal’ level of in­ter­est in au­to­mo­tive jour­nal­ism. So why don’t you be­come one? Isn’t it time to chuck that ac­coun­tant/banker/bro­ker tag and do some­thing that you re­ally love do­ing? Per­haps some of you want to take up au­to­mo­tive jour­nal­ism as a ca­reer after col­lege. Here is a lit­tle bit of ad­vice from some­one who quit a ca­reer in law to do mo­tor­ing jour­nal­ism – start read­ing now. Read ev­ery­thing and any­thing from self­ish blogs to pulp rac­ing nov­el­ettes. Read auto mag­a­zines again and again. Al­low that dor­mant enthusiast to come out and be­come a nut case. Once that is achieved you will start eat­ing, sleep­ing and per­haps, writ­ing about cars. Trust me, life will never be the same again.

Imag­ine the day when you wake up, pull aside the cur­tains of your sec­ond floor house to check what you will be rid­ing/driv­ing to work? And then imag­ine Porsche 911s and Du­catis filling up those park­ing lots? And lastly, imag­ine be­ing paid to do that!

I re­ally don’t know what you are wait­ing for!

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