Stop scoff­ing you all

Evo India - - DRIVEN -

I am an 18 year old au­to­mo­bile en­thu­si­ast and a fol­lower of your mag­a­zine since the very first is­sue. Re­cently, Honda launched its so called mini-bike, the Navi in In­dia. I have had mixed feel­ings about it. Nei­ther do I like it nor do I dis­gust­ingly hate it. But I cer­tainly hate the peo­ple who are scoff­ing at the Navi with ridicu­lously rub­bish points. I re­ally wanted a plat­form to show­case my opin­ions rather than ‘com­ment’ on im­ages on so­cial me­dia. What bet­ter than In­dia’s most loved au­to­mo­bile mag­a­zine! The fol­low­ing are the main points/rea­sons peo­ple of­ten use to scoff at the Navi along with my opin­ions re­gard­ing them.

1. It looks quirky: I have to agree with that, but the Mahin­dra Mojo isn’t out­right pretty ei­ther. It is to be noted that it costs well more than one lakh ru­pees.

2. There is no mar­ket for it: No, there is. Be­cause it is based on the Ac­tiva, peo­ple tend to for­get what it was truly de­signed for. It was made as a low cost al­ter­na­tive to the `50,000 (ap­prox.) scooter rather than `42,000 (ap­prox) bikes. Just like the Ac­tiva, there are no gears. You just sit on it and start rid­ing. No fre­quent gear shift­ing needed. You can’t do that on a bike. In fact, the heavy clutch of the bike makes a good fore­arm work­out.

3. It is over­priced: Maybe a bit, but com­ple­ment­ing the point above, It was not an al­ter­na­tive to bikes. `40,000 is `10,000 cheaper than Ac­tiva and other sim­i­lar scoot­ers. Peo­ple who buy it are def­i­nitely price con­scious but they are not the usual ones.

4. The big empty space in the body: If you live in a metropoli­tan city, you will not un­der­stand its value. But if you are like me and fre­quently run er­rands to the lo­cal mar­ket you will know how use­ful it is. I see mopeds that are la­beled ‘heavy-duty’ loaded with sacks of veg­eta­bles and other stuff. There is one sack at the back and an­other be­tween the legs of the rider. The peo­ple who ride these mopeds don’t care for looks of their ve­hi­cle. They just want func­tion­al­ity. These kind of peo­ple are a big share of Navi’s in­tended mar­ket. Of­ten I have seen those rid­ers pedal the moped be­cause the en­gine is in­ca­pable of pro­vid­ing suf­fi­cient power. With the Ac­tiva’s en­gine at a bit more pre­mium price, the Navi will cer­tainly seem an at­trac­tive op­tion for them.

I re­ally like your mag­a­zine. It has a very clean lay­out and a lu­cid writ­ing style. Even though I am not a reg­u­lar reader but I al­ways keep an eye on the con­tent pub­lished every month. It was re­ally ex­cit­ing for me to see Sirish Chan­dran on NDTV’s Great Over­land Ad­ven­ture along with Sid­dharth Vi­nayak Patankar. I also re­mem­ber him speak­ing about of­froad­ing in In­dia in one of NDTV’s event cov­er­ages. If you ever or­gan­ise such an event in Jamshed­pur, do no­tify me about that. Per­haps I will be the first per­son to show up there!

Bhar­gav Bose

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