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Mahindra Picks up Pininfarina in Purchase! Another Mahindra Magic Move!

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Mahindra the Indian car giant has gone after the amazingly stylish Pininfarina which many know as the stylish Italian car designer  which has designed almost 1,000 cars across brands over the years.

Pininfarina were operating with a debt of approximately 47.4 million euros and Mahindra have now picked up the company for 25.3 million euros and will help enhance Pininfarina in the future.

Mahindra will also inject 20 million euros into the designer through a rights issue of new stock, and will provide a guarantee worth up to 114.5 million euros to its lenders, creditors and lessors.


Mahindra now own 76.6% of Pininfarina, the remaining percentage to be left open to be purchased in the future.

Sergio Pininfarina sergioininfarina

Pininfarina will continue to remain an independent company, listed on the Milan Stock Exchange, with Mr Paolo Pininfarina continuing as the Chairman of its board, Paolo is the son of Sergio (above) who is son of the original founder Battista (image 2).

1- Paolo Pininfarina Paolopininfarina

2-Founder Battista Pininfarina battista

Battista Pininfarina the founder is where the Pininfarina brand came about; he began working in his older brothers car body workshop at the age of 12, in Turin, Italy, he worked here for decades and it was here where he learnt about body work and he even began designing his own cars.

Interestingly Battista incorporated his nick name Pinin meaning the youngest/little one in the family, so the logo read as Pininfarina and also in 2013 Mahindra the Indian company hired Hubert Tassin, a former Pininfarina designer.

The Pininfarina features their logo on many Ferraris and have collaborated with Alfa Romeo for over 70 years too. Other collaborations include Maserati and Lancia and General Motors and BMW, Bentley, Rolls Royce, Jaguar to mention the most prominent.

The logo is world renowned and a car featuring the logo is known to be an exclusive model. The Pininfarina site sums up their history from 1930 to date by saying:

“Starting from its roots and from the solid reputation achieved during 85 years of glorious history, Pininfarina has confirmed its role as standard-bearer of the aesthetic values of Italian design in the world. Today’s activities are focused on design (automotive and non-automotive), engineering services (product development, testing, prototype construction) and production of very small series or exclusive high quality cars.”


“In its genes, Pininfarina today is the same as it was in the Thirties: the central role of design, aesthetic sensitivity capable of creating timeless beauty, constant striving for innovation, the strength of a tradition that brings together industry, technology and stylistic research, the capacity to interpret the client’s requirements thus maintaining its brand identity, and a propensity for long-term collaborations. These values, together with the commitment of the entire Group, will enable us to build a bridge towards the future” – Paolo Pininfarina grandson of Battista Pininfarina.

Battista’s son was Sergio who managed the Pininfarina brand until 2012 when he passed away.

The Pininfarina brand is 85 years old and has worked with a variety of Car manufacturers, many of which are exotic. Paolo is currently chairman of the board. “The firm will remain in Italy, as will the workforce and management, the style and the brand are linked to our history.” Said Paolo Pininfarina.

The Pininfarina cars sell at Auction for millions especially the Ferrari models. Mahindra the Indian car manufacturer have purchased the Italian car designer at a discounted price as they were in financial trouble and needed the help of a bigger company to help them recover and continue their excellent work in the future. The Pininfarina website stated recently that they have become the latest jewel in the Mahindra crown.


Mahindra will be able to feature more now internationally not just India, but also in Germany, Italy, China and the US. Pininfarina said of the acquisition “For Pininfarina, the acquisition will mean an ability to leverage Tech Mahindra’s presence across 90 countries and access to about 780 customers. Tech Mahindra’s global delivery model will lend Pininfarina a newly heightened scale to its operations.”


It looks like we are soon set to see Mahindra continuing the work alongside Pininfarina to create super styled model cars and with the wealth of Mahindra these cars will be set to take the future by storm and allow Pininfarina to grow and produce more of these exquisite future models and set a new platform for the future of stylized cars.

pininfarina18 sergiopininfarina

You can find out more about Pininfarina at : “Pininfarina.com” and more about Mahindra Tech / Mahindra and Mahindra at “TechMahindra.com”.

Written by Raj

December 20, 2015 at 8:00 pm

General Motors: Pontiac G6’s Stop Short with Bad Brakes to Blame!

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550,000 Pontiac G6’s are to be investigated for an apparent problem of faulty brake lights and the way in which they are working. The investigation takes place amid reports from members of the public that the brake lights are not working when the brake pad is depressed and often on when the brake pads are not depressed, with this malfunctioning taking place, there is a danger of an accident taking place, which is why US Safety regulators have stepped in.

There was a recall for these cars several years ago when 8,106 G6’s were recalled and now it seems the problem has cropped up again. Mainly in models from 2005 to 2009. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration are in charge of the investigations. Another problem that has been filed with the NHTSA is that the cruise control function on the G6’s do not function properly and disengage when the driver has not disengaged it.

Pontiac was a former brand of GM Motors when the G6 was produced and it is GM who have agreed to co-operate with the investigations of the NHTSA.

GM of course was the company that was bailed out by the US government from the verge of bankruptcy, the other companies that were bailed out were Chrysler and Ford. There has recently been reporting of GM’s year on year losses in the European and Asian markets although a slight profit in the US.

The latest from GM is the Corvette Stingray, GM says of the dashing vehicle “The 2014 Corvette Stingray is the most powerful standard model ever, with an estimated 450 horsepower (335 kW) and 450 lb.-ft. of torque (610 Nm). It is also the most capable standard model ever, able to accelerate from 0-60 in less than four seconds and achieve more than 1g in cornering grip. It is expected to be the most fuel-efficient Corvette, exceeding the EPA-estimated 26 mpg of the current model.”

The Corvette Stingray, is another article however, for another day, and the brakes are sure to work on this speed monster… let’s hope!

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray

Rock N Rolls with Ministry of Defence Nuclear Submarine deal worth $1.3 billion

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Computer generated image of the new Astute Class Submarine, due to enter service in 2007.

Rolls Royce Limited have agreed to a submarine nuclear contract with the Ministry of Defence (UK) worth $1.3 billion.

The nuclear submarine contract is a ten year one and will help greatly with the Ministry of Defence department, as it will be sustaining up to 2000 jobs in the UK and the department will be saving up to 200 million pounds as this agreement is a consolidated cost long term agreement with Rolls-Royce of which 800 million has been awarded to Rolls-Royce and it focuses on efficiency and sustainability through all of Rolls-Royce’s business operations.

And with a thorough restructuring of the UK nuclear submarine industry the MoD are looking to save 900 million pounds. The choice of Rolls-Royce will also assist the UK economy as they are a UK originated company and “Rolls-Royce employs over 40,000 people in offices, manufacturing and service facilities in over 50 countries. Over 11,000 of these employees are engineers.”Source: Rolls-Royce website.

The MoD website states their target to save under Submarine enterprise performance programme (SEPP) they say: “This contract goes a long way towards meeting the government’s commitment to SEPP, as announced in the 2010 Strategic defence and security review, to make at least £900 million of savings by restructuring the UK’s nuclear submarine industry.”

On the MoD website it has been stated that: “The MoD has awarded an £800 million contract to Rolls-Royce to deliver and maintain the UK’s nuclear propulsion capability for submarines.”


Jason Smith, Rolls-Royce President Submarines and Chief Operating Officer – Nuclear said: “I am pleased that we have agreed this enabling contract with the MOD which delivers significant savings to them over the next ten years and provides us with the stability to deliver these activities efficiently. It further reinforces the commitment to the submarine programme.”

Rolls-Royce are producers of the finest luxury cars, yet they also specialise in being a world leader in the departments of power systems in the use of air, land, sea, and nuclear technology. Focusing on the Marine aspect they have been leading in vessel design, the use of complex systems and power and propulsion equipment.
There website states: “Our marine business serves more than 4,000 customers and has equipment installed on over 30,000 vessels, including those of 70 navies.”

The maintenance spoken of will be of the Royal Navy’s Astute Class submarines and the contract extends further to the future successor submarines which will be acting as deterrent submarines.

Mr Dunne Minister for Defence Equipment, Support and Technology said of the agreement: “Rolls-Royce’s work in the production of submarine propulsion systems is an important national strategic capability. It is necessary in order to meet the present and future defence and security needs of the UK and this contract ensures the MOD can continue to benefit from this unique capability on the best possible business terms.”

The MoD have constantly backed their nuclear deterrent policy for their submarines attack and deterrent subs, operation trident has been a matter of controversy as many have said it costs too much and also that it is out-dated in today’s world.  Operation trident is the UK’s nuclear weapons development, procurement and operation of current generation weapons and the ability to use them in extreme cases.

A quote from Trident is “the minimum effective nuclear deterrent as the ultimate means to deter the most extreme threat”.

The legality of having nuclear weapons has also been questioned internationally by many Non-governmental organisations and the questioning has arisen in relation to Human Rights Law and International Customary Law.

On 25 January 2007, Des Browne, UK Defence Minister, defended the use of Trident:

“I do not believe it makes sense to say that nuclear weapons are inherently evil. In certain circumstances, they can play a positive role – as they have in the past. But clearly they have a power to do great harm,” he said. “Are we prepared to tolerate a world in which countries which care about morality lay down their nuclear weapons, leaving others to threaten the rest of the world or hold it to ransom?”

Despite opposition to Trident, the MoD will go ahead with this contract with Rolls-Royce and it is certain that over the next 10 years UK submarines will be at the forefront of deterring a nuclear threat.


The BMW Z4 Zagato Roadster!

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*This article is soon to be featured on Autoraiders.com

Read on for more on the BMW Z4 ZAGOTO ROADSTER BELOW:


Initially BMW had a stint with Zagato one of the worlds finest craftsman of cars (Zagato is from Italy) and they produced for their first partnership together the BMW Zagato Coupe` for The Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este held at Lake Como in northern Italy; the car showcased there on May 25th 2012 and what a beauty the partnership produced! (See above photo featured in red)


Three months later (August 2012) saw the alliance join together for the second time, between the two they showcased the BMW Z4 Zagato roadster! An even more beautiful showpiece and showstopper! The venue was Pebble Beach (California) and the Z4 Zagato Roadster was a commodity that everyone wanted to see!



The prestigious Concours d’Elegance (California) 2012 was a perfect pit stop for this car to be showcased and you know it will only go on to attract more and more attention wherever it goes. This is the second collaboration between BMW and Zagato and I for one, hope it will not be the last. (See photo below featured in silver)


Zagato is known for their handscraftsmanship and this fiery roadster was made within six weeks, from design to finished product, and it does not succumb to its predecessor in any ways. Adrian van Hooydonk, Senior Vice President BMW Group Design said of the partnership “It was only with the expertise of both companies in the manufacture of high-end one-off cars and another display of outstanding teamwork that we were able to finish the car on schedule.”

Andrea Zagato says of the six week process “BMW is a high-achieving carmaker boasting a vast well of knowledge and technical capability in this area. When you combine that with our expertise in the creation of micro-series cars and our streamlined production processes, everything is in place to produce a beautiful model like the BMW Zagato Roadster in double-quick time”.

The Z4 Zagato Roadster and the BMW Zagato Coupe` will undoubtedly be collectors items as all Zagato models are, and of course the BMW Zagato Roadster has its distinctive trademark of a silver ‘Z’ on its sides near the front wheels. Alfa Romeo were the first to work with the Zagato coach builder and since then Zagato have made more than 200 Vmax concepts, special editions and micro-series, they focus on the shell of the body and incorporate their traditional measures of ensuring aero-dynamicty and lightweight construction as initial body designer Ugo Zagato learned his trade in aviation. The company has a family heritage passed on from Ugo Zagato to Andrea Zagato and Marella Rivolta-Zagato, who are now the third generation of Ugo’s family to continue with the Zagato studio and creations. Zagato was founded in 1919 by Ugo Zagato. (See Photo Below of Ugo Zagato)


The Roadster is a convertible two door and a two seater car, obviously a car for the hot countries where there will be no rain to soak up only sun, although there is always the Z4 Zagato Coupe` which has a double bubble roof for those countries where there is torrential rain and the soft-top of the Zagato Roadster just won’t cut it although it too has a double bubble roof feature in a traditional Zagato hallmark, which will add to the value of the car in appearance and price. Unfortunately there is no price being given because this concept is not to go on sale, also BMW have not released any photos of the BMW with the roadster’s soft-top roof up, they have however raised the bar, standard, and the roof, metaphorically speaking, with this concept model.


There are many features about the Zagato Roadster which are endearing to everyone and anyone, here are the most prominent of them:

  • The large yet elegantly stitched beige letter ‘Z’ on the headrests of driver and passenger, giving further association to its designer specification. Behind the headrests are beige shadow headrests which incorporate roll bars.
  • The BMW has its trademark kidney grille and it is an exquisite grille made up of small letter ‘z’s.
  • The front of the car has McLaren styled scoops although smaller in size, giving this Zagato roadster a racer look.
  • The lights are shaped finely and compactly and they are attractive to look at, directly above the headlights are razor-light LED’s.
  • The lights are twin and circular shaped.
  • The bonnet has been made with three-dimensions to it and has V lines from the BMW logo at the front creating the letter V, and gives the car further impressiveness about it.
  • Beautiful leather finish on the interior seats and roll-bars and side doors.
  • There is a small lip at the front of the car and this fits in with the look of the car and it adds to the cars racing appearance.
  • The alloy wheels are 19″inch in size and star-shaped with five spokes and include a matte finish to complement the rest of the paintwork on the body.
  • A meshed grille is present on the front of the car and are contained within the air scoops and above the lip at the front.
  • The seating is low and the driver sits down in a race like position inside the cockpit, making this car a real roadster.
  • There are futuristic concept styled indicators on the wheel archs, yellow at the front and red at the back.
  • The rear of the car has eloquent matte finished exhausts, one on either side, however BMW decided to be subtle in this aspect as they do not protrude from the car.
  • The lights on the rear of the car are one long strip with a black tint all across this strip and the lights cannot be seen, providing the roadster with a sense of mysteriousness about it.
  • There are also sporty looking scoops on either side of the car, behind the front wheel archs and on the bonnet on either side.
  • A curvaceous line is visible occurring from the rear of the door and reaching to the rear of the car.
  • The rear of the roadster features a diffuser ensuring smooth airflow.
  • Long wheel base.
  • The roadster is based on the  Z4 sDrive35is there are no specifications as to the engine under the bonnet or top speed, however estimates are that it has a 3.0-liter six speed engine. With this engine it would take a time of 4.7 seconds to go from 0-60mph and the top speed is said to be the same as the Z4 sdrive35is which has been electronically-limited at a maximum speed of 155 mph.

The rear is smartly created, it is smart, prim and proper with no sharpness about it and smooth curves around the edges, it is sculptured rather than chiseled. BMW had this to say about it: “Taken as a whole, the rear of the BMW Zagato Roadster has a very broad, low-slung appearance, giving the car a wide stance and planted muscularity on the road. Beneath it, the dark diffuser gives the BMW Zagato Roadster a squat, powerful stance. The body-colored surfaces between the tailpipes draw the final lines in the distinctive, low-to-the-road and broad-set looks of the rear end.”


The interior is particularly worth mentioning in some detail, BMW says that the exterior and the interior both compliment each other well by blurring the two together: “The BMW Zagato Roadster consciously allows the boundaries between inside and outside to blur.” The interior is beige in colour and there is evidence of fine stitching everywhere, use of curvaceous brown lines on the inside of the doors and lights for both driver and passenger above the windscreen; attached to the windscreen is the rear-view mirror in a neat way.


The left hand drive steering wheel and the seats make use of the colour beige and black and the armrest between the driver seat and passenger seat is beige and can be flipped up to conveniently store whatever is necessary; it leads forward to the idrive dial (controlling the on-board computer/display) and the gear shifter which has been richly doused in the beige colour too, providing this car with an expensive look to match its exterior outfit. The idrive display is hidden in the dashboard and rises from out of nowhere for the driver to view. 

The gear shifter allows you to drive the car in manual although the car is an automatic. There is also a switch which can be used to put the car into park, other switches that can be accessed with ease are the sport and comfort mode switches placed close to the gear shifter. There is a cd-slot to listen to music as you cruise along in this wonderful machine. The Zagato roadster has a start/stop engine button which is neatly placed to the right of the steering wheel on top of a metallic finished strip, alongside this button are four large dials which allow you to control different functions such as fan heating or cooling all laid on top of the same metallic strip. The Speedometers are large and shaped in a futuristic racing style, yet again an attractive feature of the car.

BMW says of the interior colours featured and the ‘Z’ for Zagato: “The interplay of colors and composition of details bathes the interior of the BMW Zagato Roadster in a sumptuous ambience, while the brown “z” embroidered into the seats is a further clue to its origins.”


BMW also go on to mention the interior design and say “The interior itself boasts the clear structuring one would expect from BMW and invites the driver to give the machine around him a thorough workout. Details such as the sweeping horizontal lines along the inside of the doors and the full-length center console lend a rarefied sense of exclusivity to the sporty promptings and driver focus of the interior.”

BMW have mentioned that the Zagato Roadster is like its partner the Zagato Coupe` by being able to drive well at high speeds and also intended for these speeds.

The best quote from BMW on the Zagato Roadster is the following from the official press release: “The taut hallmark BMW surface treatment and Zagato’s clearly defined distribution of visual mass lend the BMW Zagato Roadster an athletic appearance – poised and eager, demanding to be driven.”


Whether the Zagato Roadster will go into production remains to be seen although BMW have not ruled it out as yet! The same is to be said about its counterpart the Zagato Coupe`. Everyone will be wondering if their is soon to be another collaboration and many including myself will be keeping are eyes open for the next showstopper from these two companies.

The Zagato Roadster and the Zagato Coupe` may be celebrated pieces, yet they are still a matter of argument, as to whether they are different pieces when compared or whether the Roadster is the Coupe` with the roof off, some argue that they have different features and that what makes them different, others say there features are similar and they look alike. I personally would add to the debate by saying that the Zagato Coupe` is not as attractive as the Zagato Roadster and the roadster is exactly what it should be, which is a fine specimen of a roadster!

The Zagato Roadster was launched in California and it seems only right to provide some additional information about BMW’s presence in America:

BMW own the Rolls-Royce brand as well as the MINI brand and the figures for the car dealers in the USA are as follows:

“The BMW Group sales organization is represented in the U.S. through networks of 338 BMW passenger car and BMW Sports Activity Vehicle centers, 139 BMW motorcycle retailers, 114 MINI passenger car dealers, and 32 Rolls-Royce Motor Car dealers.”

BMW of North America, LLC has been around in the United States since 1975 and Rolls-Royce Motor Cars began distributing vehicles in 2003.

“The BMW Group in the United States has grown to include marketing, sales, and financial service organizations for the BMW brand of motor vehicles, including motorcycles, the MINI brand, and the Rolls-Royce brand of Motor Cars.”

In South Carolina, is part of BMW Group’s global manufacturing plant, for all X5 and X3 Sports Activity Vehicles and X6 Sports Activity Coupes. BMW in 2010 announced that it would spend $750 million to expand operations at the Spartanburg plant. This investment will produce around 240,000 vehicles a year, making Spartanburg the largest car plant in the United States through its number of employees. All signs that BMW are doing well and BMW will be wanting to continue to develop their standing further in the USA.

I’ll conclude by saying that this BMW Zagato Roadster is an exclusive concept model and if it does not go into production, it will, many would hope, have some influence on the design of future production models.

See Below for a Video of The designers of the BMW Zagato Roadster – Karim Habib, head of exterior design at BMW and Norihiko Harada, Chief Designer Zagato, where they touch upon the relationship with Zagato, the six week deadline, the launch for Pebble Beach and the design of the Zagato roadster.


Feel free to leave comments!

Raj Mehta



BMW: First the expression of Joy – ART Campaign (Z4), and then: a BMW ART GALLERY@LONDON NCP CAR PARK!

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The Z4 has been campaigned by BMW as a car which is an:

Expression of Joy!

The people at BMW went all out in showing the world exactly how expressive the Z4 is, and by word, it is so exasperatingly, eccentrically, expressive that it produced an artwork which is not only a masterpiece, but also of epic proportion! The New Z4 is BMW’s latest showroom piece and is undoubtedly the undisputed champion – especially the Z4 GT3!

Which one is of preference to most is up to the public at large, the Z4 is already proving popular and is gaining further in the ranks of the classic cars of the future! The Z4 and the GT3 version are a duo of incomparable vision compared to their competition!

The vehicles competing with the Z4 are: The Infinity G37, The Audi A5, The Mercedes SLK, and The Porsche Boxster, The Audi TT, and The Nissan 370Z! As you can see there are many competitors to the Z4!

The BMW Z4 has been around since 2002:

(BMW Z4 2.5 (2002-2006), BMW Z4 2.2i (2004-2005), BMW Z4 M Coupe (2006-2009), BMW Z4 M Roadster (2006-2009), BMW Z4 2.5i Sport (2006-2009), BMW Z4 Coupé (2006-2009), BMW Z4 sDrive 23i (2009 onwards) BMW Z4 sDrive30i (2009 onwards), BMW Z4 sDrive35i (2009 onwards),

And continuously seen of the competition throughout the years! The Z4 brand is still going strong with the latest model on the market being the BMW Z4 sDrive28i (2012 onwards)!  Re-shaped, Re-styled, and Ready for everything! The Z4 starts from £29,485 and if you want the M version, the price starts at £32,650, all models are only available in petrol, and the CO2 emissions (g/km) is 159. The Z4 is said to be in a class of its own and all that is required!

However the Z4 M version is the icing on the cake and will look slightly better with the sports customizations!

The Z4 and the GT3 Z4 are double trouble! Both are fun and funky! Some of the features of the BMW Z4 are the mean looking contours for the roadster which emerge from the BMW emblem, which makes this roadster look smoking and full of swag! The Z4 is made easily recognisable by these contours and there’s no mistaking the GT3 Z4 as that has a huge winged spoiler at the rear of the car. Double trouble indeed! The combo models will make you say WOW!

As for the interesting parts here are some of the most important :

BMW uses keyless technology to start the engine at the push of a button (the start/stop button), and the remote key sends a signal to the car to unlock it or lock it, at which point the door handles illuminate to provide further assisted entry to the car!

Electric Power Steering, BMW TwinPower Turbo Technology, Auto-Start/Stop, Optimum Shift Indicator, Brake energy Regeneration, Tyres with reduced rolling resistance, and Lightweight construction. (All of which are part of BMW’s Efficient Dynamics Green Initiative!)

The Z4 is available in Manual (6-speed transmission) or Automatic which has an 8 speed transmission making the Z4 a real roadster!

There’s also a turbo-charger which eases the roadster to a speed of 156mph (the roadster has been limited to this speed).

The Z4 comes complete with a retractable hard top roof which can be retracted at speeds of up to 25mph, as for more on the BMW hardtop, here’s a quote from BMW:

“long bonnet, short overhangs and deep, way-back seat – in a modern idiom create a look that is as familiar as it is unique. A look that is complemented to perfection by the retractable hardtop. Whether open or closed, this folding roof maintains the low-slung lines typical of a roadster. With it you can savour one of the finest ways to drive in comfort.”

The Z4 is a rear-wheel drive (17″, 18″, 19″ alloys), has ABS as standard, a CD player and Radio, cruise control as standard, air conditioning as standard, good safety with airbags  for the driver, passenger, and front side airbag, electric windows, and is a two-seater roadster with four cylinders which performs well and reconvenes a time of 5.6 seconds to 60mph! Additional safety features include rollover bars fixed behind the headrests and stable “A” pillars along with the feature of the bonnet automatically rising in a collision. The head and upper body airbags protect the head, ribcage and pelvis areas acting as cushions in a collision.

A little car the Z4 may be but the German roadster’s 2012 update is getting bigger in name, even the lights (xenon and round) on the car are smaller than the grilles and this gives the Z4 a wicked look and only adds to the cars flair! The car has daytime running lights. The front of the Z4 looks hungry for the road and there are further additions beside the grilles which are air intakes on either side and lowest to the ground beneath the kidney grilles is a fierce looking meshed carbon front splitter!

Quick enough for BMW who used to produce engines with their trademark 6 cylinders; yet in their efforts to be greener have chosen to use a four-cylinder blueprint for the Z4 which performs well although there is less power being produced whereas torque is increased. The car is available in Single or Twin exhaust tailpipes! And has cruise control, and a high-beam assistant.

The Z4 is a rear wheel drive and can be operated manually (via gear paddles) or automatically. BMW have made this roadster with the vision of it being an everyday car for use 365 days of the year! They say that the temperature within the car will be suitable for whatever weather conditions the car is in, and there are options of four round air conditioning controls or automatic air conditioning. There is also the iDrive onboard control system which controls the different functions such as accessing, Telephone, Sat-Nav, Settings, Drive-mode and Radio/CD.

Engine & Power:

Standard Engine 2L 240hp I4      
Horsepower 240 @ 5000 RPM      
Torque 260 @ 1250 RPM      
Valves 4      
Displacement (cc) 1997      
Bore X Stroke (in.) 3.3 X 3.5      
Compression Ratio 10.0:1

Exterior Dimensions & Weight BMW Z4 sDrive28i

Curb Weight – Automatic (lb.) 3262.8      
Wheelbase (in.) 98.3      
Length (in.) 167      
Width (in.) 70.5      
Height (in.) 50.8      
Track Front (in.) 59.5      
Track Rear (in.) 61.4

SOURCE:  http://www.automobile.com

MORE ABOUT THE GT3 Z4! – (shown above)

BMW has released new details about the Z4 GT3: “BMW Motorsport has further developed the BMW Z4 GT3 specifically for the 2012 season. The engine now turns up to 9,000 rpm and has a new exhaust system. The rear wing is now made from carbon fibre instead of aluminium and produces greater downforce – with less drag.”

It is a star on the race track and has many accolades to its name: the BMW GT3 Z4! The car shines spectacularly in every way and looks like it could easily produce flames firing out of the GT3’s exhausts! A personal favourite of mine! Its place is however, I would say on the race track!

It has been taken up by private racing teams! The GT3 Z4 has done well in competitive racing and has made an impression! The racing car proving it had the mettle to produce a 1st place finish at the Dubai 24 Hour endurance event, and also securing second place from a low 49th position at the 24 Hour Spa Francorchamps event!

As you can imagine it is a much grander scale than the standard Z4! Whereas the Z4 says Zoom! The GT3 Z4 says ZOOM ZOOM ZOOM!!!!!!!!!!  It’s further enhanced in engineering, styling, and capability! It has a six-speed sequential transmission with a “Quick Shift” function, and an engine management system and the engine consists of a 4.0-liter V8! Being a race car there is also a racing anti-lock braking system present, a roll cage, and rims with central locking and safety clips.

Here’s the best bit!

It is available as a road car!

So prepare for take off!

It has been priced at €340,000.

Technical specifications BMW Z4 GT3  
Length: 4,387 mm
Width: 2,012 mm
Height: 1,210 mm
Wheel base: 2,509 mm
Weight: 1,190 kg
Tank capacity: 115 litres
Engine type: Eight-cylinder, V-configuration
Capacity: 4,361 ccm
Bore x stroke: 92 x 82 mm
Compression: 13.0 :1
Max. output: 515 bhp (8,200 rpm)



For those of you, whom have not had the opportunity to be acquainted with the Z4 and its mastery of art, please read on as I elaborate further.

“The BMW Z4 is a modern interpretation of a classic roadster and the most admired characteristics of a sports coupe`” In celebration of the BMW Z4 being an ‘expression of joy!’  BMW hooked up with the artist Robin Rhode who is a South African artist based in Berlin and gave him the privilege of creating an art piece to be the front of the BMW Z4’s campaign! This art-piece you see above is the creation of his vision which was then painted by the Z4 roadster! With the use of many colours and tyres! (Each colour was painted by a different set of tyres). Mr Rhodes did not drive the car, however operated it via remote control! Making this art-piece, even further wonderful! For those of you wanting to find out more there is a video of the artwork taking place and it is directed by Jake Scott.

The link is: http://www.expressionofjoy.com/#


The link shows you the different processes from the artwork taking place on a piece of paper by Mr Rhodes to the Z4 being a tool of art on a huge canvas! It also shows the preparation that went into the larger than life artwork! BMW have really gone all out with this campaign they even have an Iphone Game for this art based campaign! Not enough can be said of this art-piece, it is a fusion of car and colours! (I’ve got my own take on it which is why this article is no ordinary article it too is a fusion! A fusion of writing, colour and of course the Z4 and Z4 GT3!

There is more though!!!

‘Read on’

To find out more about BMW’s and their relationships with other artists!


BMW’s as you’ve never seen them before! And they have arrived in an array of flair and style, which none of them are lacking in! The Art Gallery lasted only two weeks and began in July and finished in August, it certainly made the rounds with Art Critics and Enthusiasts of Art and Cars! The Gallery was put on by the ICA (Institute of Contemporary Arts) at the NCP Car Park in East End of London and the admission was free. Do not despair if you did not go to see it, as you can see the photos of the Art Cars within this post!

This Art Gallery was a first for the UK! And the Art collection had begun over 35 years ago and using the cars as their canvasses leading international artists have been making their mark on what are classic art-pieces of the highest standards! Artists include Andy Warhol!

The London Olympics 2012, ICA and BMW all collaborated to put this exhibition on as part of the London 2012 Festival! And it was called the Art Drive! Artists included: artists: Alexander Calder, Sandro Chia, Ken Done, Ernst Fuchs, David Hockney, Jenny Holzer, Matazo Kayama, Jeff Koons, Roy Lichtenstein, Esher Mahlangu, Cesar Manrique, M.J Nelson, A.R Penck, Robert Rauschenberg, Frank Stella, and Andy Warhol as mentioned before.

So here are the cars and the Artists’ work! Videos included! Enjoy!

Raj Mehta Signing out!

1. First up there’s Jenny Holzer with the BMW V12 LMR! (1999)

2. Alexander Calder 3.0 CSL

A 1975 BMW 3.0CSL by Alexander Calder was the start of the BMW art car project and this was the first commissioned Art Car by BMW! Mr Calder was convinced by his French racing driver friend to take this project up, and it was used in the Le Mans Race in 1975.

3. Matazo Kayama 535i (1990) is a Japanese artist who studied at the Painting Academy in Kyoto this is his airbrushed Art Car!

4. César Manrique from Spain his Art Car features the BMW 730i (1990)

5. Frank Stella BMW 3.0 CSL, American abstract painter and printmaker this Art Car was done in 1976.

6. Andy Warhol BMW M1 Art Car. Mr Warhol is known for being a key and influential figure in the American Pop Art movement. This was the fourth Art Car commissioned by BMW. (1979)

7. Roy Lichtenstein BMW 320 CSi (1977) New York born artist. Again has a Pop Art theme to it.

8. American artist Robert Rauschenberg, Art Car BMW 635 CSi, (1986), he is said to have bridged the gap between Abstract Expressionism and Pop Art.

9. Australian Artist, Michael Jagamarra Nelson, Art Car:  BMW M3, was very keen on promoting and keeping aboriginal art around, the Art Car was produced in the time of (1989).

10. Esther Mahlangu BMW Art Car 525i (1991), she is from a tribe in South Africa, and has kept alive the centuries old traditional wall paintings of her tribe and her artwork reflects this.

11. Ken Done, Australian Artist, Aboriginal/Australian themes, Art Car is a BMW M3 group A, (1989)

12. Sandro Chia, BMW Art Car M3 GT2 Series Race Car (1992) – Italian/Painter Sculptor.

13. English Painter, David Hockney, BMW Art Car painted on BMW 850 CSi (1995)

14. German Painter, A.R. Penck, BMW Art Car Z1, (1991).

15. Ernst Fuchs BMW Art Car 635 CSi, Austrian visionary painter, draftsman, printmaker, sculptor, architect, stage designer, composer, poet, and singer. (1982)

16. This is my favourite! The Artist is American Jeff Koons, the BMW Art Car is a M3 GT2! (2010)

The BMW X1

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Bmw X1 2012 BMWX1

The BMW X1 is the smallest in the range of BMW’s X series which entails a range of sports activity vehicles. It measures 175 inches in length and in height is 60.82 inches, its width is 70.4 inches, it may be the smallest of the lot but it is in no way any less of a top-performer and it is a stunner in any colour, it has all the elements of sport, elegance and efficiency, which is what has come to be expected of the designers at BMW. The other models available in the X series are the X3, X5, and X6 all of which are in a class of their own and an asset to have in any car enthusiast’s collection.

The BMW X1 has been re-vamped since its arrival in 2009 and the new look was featured at the New York International Auto Show 2012 (as featured above), where the car is now on sale from $31,545 and upwards as there are 14 different variants in the X1 series. The US version is soon to be produced in India too where BMW will be producing the X1 in Chennai and Tamil Nadu.

2010 BMW X1 compact SUV: dashboard and console.

The variants of the X1 being produced within India and distributed there will be the sdrive18i (4 cylinder petrol), sdrive20d and sdrive20d (highline) (4 cylinder diesels). The cars will not be available in manual transmission as they are all automatic as is standard. The automatic X1’s will have an 8 speed transmission which certainly makes this car sporty and powerful. BMW have come to be a leader in promoting efficiency and are well along the way to promoting greener cars; the term used by BMW is “efficient dynamics” and the BMW X1 comes fitted as standard with a few of these efficient dynamics incorporated within this SAV crossover as I will mention briefly below:

There is the Brake Energy Regeneration, which when braking or coasting, begins to via the engaged alternator to charge the battery this ensures that energy is not being wasted, rather recycled and that the car is operating with maximum efficiency. BMW have opted for lightweight engineering and they are keen to mention that “Lightweight materials reduce the overall weight of the vehicle, enhancing driving dynamics and improving fuel economy.”

The design of the X1 is one of elegance as mentioned before and is beautifully sculptured with curves and free-flowing lines all across the exterior, the designers at BMW are artistes’ who always look to create an art piece in their models, and the X1 is no exception.

As for the rivals of the X1 there are many: The Audi Q3, VW Tiguan, BMW X3, Ford Kuga, Land Rover Freelander and the Subaru Forester, and the 2013 Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class. The BMW X1 is in a saturated market where there are many other alternative options, although the X1 will still be a favourite to do well within the crossover department. The X1 currently offers a rear wheel drive and a four wheel drive in the USA, it remains to be seen whether this will be the case in India where the car is set to launch just before the Hindu festival of Diwali and the X1 is said to start selling for the price of 33lakhs.

The BMW X1 has two engines available there is the 2.0 liter four-cylinder turbocharged engine able to produce 240 horsepower, and the US version which has a 3.0 liter six-cylinder turbocharged engine producing 300 horsepower.

The X1 is economical and has a low C02 which for the different models ranges between 119 g/km to 145 g/km. Below is a table showing the UK TAX BANDS and the BMW X1 and its models are within the tax bands of C and F:

Fuel economy chart

The X1 can do 0-60 in 6.8 to 10.1 seconds and has a top speed of 127mph (limited).

2010 BMW X1: boot / trunk with rear seats backrest folded down.

The Greencarwebsite .co.uk says: “Whether on a shopping trip, a skiing holiday or a day trip with your mountain bike – the new BMW X1 covers just about everything. The rear seat, for example, splits 40:20:40, so skis or golf clubs can be transported while still retaining four seats. Tilt-adjustable seat backrests don’t just mean greater flexibility they also create more luggage space without sacrificing passenger comfort.”

The drive and handling have so far received good reviews with key aspects being the steering, and the tight chassis, in counter to these keys however are the wheels which run on run flat tyres and there is the height of the car which is considerably tall for a crossover and raises the issue of body roll.

2010 BMW X1: rear seats with panoramic view.

The car’s interior is of high quality with leather upholstery and is said to be better than the X3’s, this is what is needed to compliment the exterior of the car which is definitely intriguing, aesthetic and precise,  it also makes use of sound-proofing to ensure that the passengers and the driver have a quite drive. Safety is good on the X1 with six airbags as standard and rear parking sensors. There is also an option of having a panoramic roof top which enables the passengers to look up at the sky. There are also daytime driving lights on the X1 and adaptive brake lights to let drivers behind you know when you are braking sharply. Other useful features include Dynamic Stability Control and Dynamic Traction Control and you can opt for Performance Control acting on the brakes.

MSNCARS.CO.UK Says of its verdict of the BMW X1 : “The X3 has never seemed quite comfortable in its own skin but there’s no such criticism of the X1, which is every inch the junior X model in looks, driving style and performance. It further crowds an already packed product range but, in its own right, the X1’s blend of ruggedness, performance and sportiness are a class act.”

2010 BMW X1: iDrive controller with selection buttons behind the automatic gear selector.

The BMW X1 as well as having a facelift will entail a new LED package for the lights (the indicators are now also on the wing mirrors) and a new range of paint colours to choose from, there is also an iDrive feature which is alongside the automatic transmission, there are also chrome touches on the interior and use of more expensive materials than the previous model, and those are the few developments from the 2009 European version of the X1, it is now the US which is literally the new face of the X1. As always there is the outstanding BMW trademark double kidney grille which gives the car further presence, as if it needed any more, there is also use of chrome on the exterior now giving the X1 an eye catching look. The side-skirts are that which are similar to all the X models of the BMW brand. The other parts to mention on the X1 are the undertray which incorporates the use of colours black and silver which BMW say gives the car a further more “striking surface structure”. The X1 is decked out in a number of fine lines and contours which map themselves throughout the exterior of the car in a spectacular way.

2010 BMW X1 premium compact SUV: side view to front seats and dashboard.

As for more on the design of the BMW X1 here’s a quote from the BMW Press release on the X1:

“Typical BMW proportions, expressive, vibrant surfaces and signature BMW X model design cues shape the appearance of the BMW X1. A sweeping hood, long wheelbase and set-back passenger compartment emphasize the vehicle’s dynamic talent, while attractive light and shade effects hint at its inherent agility. The versatility and robustness of a BMW X model are reflected in elements such as the black edging at the lower edge of the body and wide wheel arches.”

The alloy wheels are stunning in design and the rear is simple and effective in looking good. There is also a hint of a spoiler on the roof of the car which does not extend any further than a slight notch and incorporates a third rectangular brake light. What would have improved this crossover SUV further would have been dual exhausts, giving the X1 a sportier look that it deserves!

I’ll conclude with a couple of adverts from BMW on what is sure to be their prized X1!

A look back to: Mazda’s Rotary Engines and Hydrogen Initiative

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Mazda began in 1920, and had two transformations in name before they were officially called Mazda in 1931 although the cars still had the Mazda name on license plates before then. And they have become a successful company in many terms.

Mazda have gone it alone when it comes to engines, since 1967 Mazda have been producing cars with Dual Rotary Engines, in fact 1967, saw Mazda manufacture the World’s first dual rotary engine car, which went on sale. The car was called Cosmo Sport (S110). The rotary engine was invented by a German named Felix Wankel in 1957.

Cosmo Sport (S110)

“The Cosmo Sport recorded more than 3 million kilometers of road tests over six years. Its futuristic styling and superb driving performance delighted sports car enthusiasts throughout the world.”*1

First Two-Rotor Engine

The double rotary engine became a success for its role as provider to smooth driving, A year on 1968 saw Mazda deciding to expand from the Cosmo Sport car, and began installing double rotary engines in (large-volumes) coupes and sedans. 1970 saw Mazda begin exports of their dual rotary cars to the United States, which was a country with strict emission policies. Mazda were a keen contender to meet the standards, and did so, this was a result of Mazda’s aim since 1966 to reduce emissions, which saw the successful introduction of their exports within the U.S.

“The Model R100 (called the Familia Rotary Coupe in Japan) became the first product to be exported to the U.S., and equipped with the thermal reactor system, it met the current emission standards. Meanwhile, in the Japanese market, Mazda launched the first low-emission production vehicle in November 1972. This was the Luce AP, powered by the Type 12A (2 x 573cc) rotary engine, it came equipped with Mazda’s Rotary Engine Anti-Pollution System (REAPS).”*1

Mazda continued in the 1970’s to commit to their efficiency of fuel consumption, they developed a project dubbed the ‘Phoenix Project’ which aimed to become more fuel-efficient within one year by initially 20% and then with the final aim to reduce the consumption by 40%. With a Research and Development team backed by the entire company and a team who were so dedicated to a greener future from so early on, Mazda managed to accomplish these targets set by the ‘Phoenix Project’, it was cheers all around for Mazda and their green car vision.

“The success of the Phoenix Project was reflected in the sporty Mazda RX-7 (called the Savanna RX-7 in Japan) which was launched in 1978. As suggested by the project name Phoenix, it proved to the world that the rotary engine was here to stay.”*1

The rotary engine to date remains one of Mazda’s legacies and has seen many improvements and upgrades to see Mazda successfully becoming a champion of the rotary engine; some of these improvements have been the implementation of catalytic converter systems which provided lean burn and purified exhaust emissions.

Lean-Burn Rotary Engine

“Through fundamental engine improvements and newly developed systems, including the reaction-type exhaust manifold, the high-energy ignition system, split secondary air control, and the two-stage pellet catalyst system, Mazda finally completed the Lean-Burn rotary engine and launched it onto the market.” *1

Mazda went even further in 1982, when the company introduced a Turbo-charger for their rotary engines (The Cosmo RE Turbo), this was a first for rotary engined cars and again it was Mazda who had brought it to everyone’s attention and to the market!

It came with an electronically controlled fuel injection system, which provided the speed to make the Cosmo RE Turbo at the time, the fastest commercial vehicle in Japan, proving that rotary engined cars were special!

Mazda and their continual plans of advancements in the industry, soon after produced the “Impact-Turbo,” which was developed exclusively for the rotary engine and was crafted to ensure that the engine response and output was even better than its predecessor.

Mazda had developed the rotary engine and led to its advancements by example! Thanks to Mazda and the R&D team they came up with the most superior of rotary systems which were called the “Dynamic Supercharging system” (1983),  and the “Twin Scroll Turbo System” (1989).

In 1989, the Twin-Scroll Turbo evolved into the Twin-Independent-Scroll Turbo, which had a more simplified configuration. When this new turbocharger was coupled with other improvements in the engine, it provided more outstanding low-speed torque and improved responsiveness.

“Since 1983, Mazda has used a dual fuel injector system which features two injectors in each rotor chamber. Generally speaking, a small nozzle is more desirable at low speeds as it can atomize fuel more effectively for more stable combustion, while a large nozzle is better at high speeds as it can provide larger volumes of fuel to boost performance. Mazda’s electronically controlled fuel injection system was developed to control the supply of fuel to these nozzles over a wide range of engine operations. For the dual-rotor 13B-REW and the Triple-rotor 20B-REW rotary engines, both put into mass production in 1990, the dual injectors were further evolved into air-mixture injectors, which achieved more than double the degree of fuel atomization.” *1

As Mazda continued to develop their rotary engines to levels of extreme excellence, a pattern appears, a pattern that is of fuel efficiency and low emissions! 1990 saw Mazda’s refinement of their engines with the Type 20B-REW Rotary Engine and the Sequential Twin-Turbo, this progression from the 1960’s through to the 1990’s demonstrated Mazda’s commitment to R&D and they relied on their knowledge from early on through to the later period of the 90’s to establish themselves as leaders in the world of rotary engines, so much so that they even entered their road cars into race competitions.

“During development of the triple-rotor rotary engine, extensive road tests for performance and durability were carried out, including participation in international sports car races such as the famous Le Mans 24 Hour Endurance Race. All of which demonstrated how a mere production car could compete in the world of motor sports.” Mazda made racing history by entering the first rotary engined cars: here’s a link to where you can find out more about Mazda’s rotary engine race history, a few first place finishes against top competitors such as Porsche and Mercedes. http://media.ford.com/pdf/rotary6_e.pdf

“Mazda Chief Executive and President Takashi Yamanouchi recalled the victory of Mazda’s rotary engine at Le Mans 20 years ago, and called the rotary engine ‘iconic.'” *2

Mazda, it seems, have overcome all obstacles throughout the 60’s through to the 90’s and through to 2000, they are known for producing the World’s only rotary engine plant! Quite an achievement!

The latest and unfortunate ending to this story is that in June 2012 Mazda are said to be ending production of their Rotary engine cars!

Mazda will stop producing vehicles with its signature rotary engines in June next year because of poor sales and the costs of meeting emissions standards.

“Mazda spokeswoman Michiko Terashima said research and development on the rotary engine will continue, but production is now not making sense when considering the costs of meeting safety and emissions standards for new vehicles.”*2

“Mazda Motor Corp. said the latest edition of the Mazda RX-8 will go on sale targeting sales of 1,000 vehicles, but will end production in June 2012. The RX-8 is the only model in Mazda’s lineup with the rotary engine.” *2

Whether Mazda will re-start their rotary campaign, is what many green-car fans will be hoping for! This remains to be seen!

However there is always the Hydrogen initiative which could easily become Mazda’s new future even if rotary engines are not to be used within them!

Mazda’s Hydrogen initiative which started in 1993 with the HR-X2 and was unveiled at the 1993 Tokyo Motor show, the HR-X2 concept car featured a Hydrogen rotary engine. This car adopted metal-hydride to carry hydrogen fuel safely. Since then Mazda have produced a hydrogen-fuelled rotary engine concept at the Tokyo Motor Show in 1991. This car was called the RX8 Hydrogen RE and is a car which can also run on petrol. Since the 1980’s Mazda have been working on Hydrogen operated cars and the RX8 Hydrogen RE epitomizes their work in all its glory!

Mazda’s hydrogen engine has been developed to generate power by burning hydrogen. It is a very clean power source as it emits only water vapor rather than the gas carbon dioxide which is linked to Global warming.

“Mazda succeeded in commercializing the world’s first hydrogen rotary engine when it started leasing the RX-8 Hydrogen RE in February 2006. The vehicle provides a natural driving feel without sacrificing handling or acceleration, and offers enjoyable driving without pumping out harmful exhaust gases. The marriage of hydrogen and the rotary engine has made it possible to realize an “ultimate eco-car.”*1

Since 1991 through to 2008 Mazda have produced 12 MODELS which are hydrogen operated! There initiative is going strong and the Hydrogen Mazda green cars looks to be further prevalent in Mazda’s future! Exciting stuff!

I’ll conclude with a quote from Mazda’s Hydrogen Rotary Engine Initiative:

“The hydrogen rotary engine is a visionary power unit, leading towards a hydrogen-based eco-friendly society.”*1


*2 – http://www.impomag.com/news/2011/10/mazda-stop-making-rotary-engine-vehicles


RE Chronicle
  • Ramelli invented the first rotary piston type water pump.
  • Pappenheim invented a gear type pump.
  • James Watt invented the first rotary steam engine.
  • Murdock also invented a rotary steam engine and succeeded in generating power.
  • Cooley manufactured a rotary steam engine in which both inner and outer rotors rotate.
  • Umpleby advanced Cooley’s steam engine into a rotary type internal combustion engine.
  • Wallinder, Skoog, and Lundby announced their joint research on the rotary engine.
  • Sensaud de Lavou further advanced the rotary theory.
  • Maillard devised a compressor by applying the rotary theory.
  • Felix Wankel collaborated with NSU to promote his rotary engine research and development.
  • Wankel/NSU built a prototype DKM rotary engine.
  • Wankel/NSU built a prototype KKM rotary engine.
  • Wankel completed the type KKM250 rotary engine.
  • Wankel/NSU tested their rotary engine in public.
  • Mazda made a technical contract with NSU and Wankel.
  • Mazda completed its own first prototype rotary engine.
  • Mazda organized Rotary Engine Research Department.
  • A prototype sports car powered by a rotary engine is unveiled at the Tokyo Motor Show.
  • Mazda announced the completion of the rotary engine.
    The Cosmo Sport was introduced into the domestic market.
  • The Familia Rotary Coupe was introduced.
  • Mazda exported rotary engine cars for the first time (to Australia and Thailand).
  • The Luce Rotary Coupe (front-wheel-drive) was introduced.
    Mazda’s rotary engine car cleared the US Federal Government emissions test.
  • Mazda received award from Japanese Mechanical Engineering Society for the commercialization of the rotary engine.
  • Export of rotary engine cars to Europe (Switzerland) started.
  • The Capella Rotary (powered by 12A unit) was introduced.
  • Export of rotary engine cars to the United States started.
  • Cumulative production of rotary engine cars reached 100,000 units.
  • The Savanna Rotary was introduced.
  • Capella G-series, the first rotary-powered automobile with an automatic transmission, was introduced.
  • Cumulative production of rotary engine cars reached 200,000 units.
  • The Capella Rotary Coupe completed 100,000km endurance run, through eleven European countries and with its engine fully sealed.
  • The first series production car with full emission control package, the Luce Rotary was introduced.
  • Mazda’s rotary engine car cleared the U.S. 1975 emission standards, and this fact was confirmed by EPA test.
  • Luce AP (REAPS-2) was the first vehicle approved under the anti-pollution incentive tax in Japan.
  • Cumulative production of rotary engine cars reached 500,000 units.
  • The Luce AP Grand Tourismo powered by 13B engine was introduced.
  • The Parkway Rotary 26 was introduced.
  • The Roadpacer was introduced.
  • The Cosmo AP was introduced featuring a low emission rotary engine with 40% improved fuel-efficiency.
  • Cosmo L Landau top was introduced.
  • Luce Legato was introduced.
  • The Savanna RX-7 was introduced.
  • Cumulative production of rotary engine cars reached 1,000,000 units.
  • The New Cosmo and Luce Rotary were introduced.
  • The world’s first turbo-charged rotary engine model was added to the。。Cosmo (929) series.
  • The turbo-charged rotary engine model was added to the Luce (929) series.
  • The RX-7 was face-lifted and the world-first turbo rotary engine model was added.
  • The RX-7 was entirely redesigned.
  • Cumulative production of rotary engine cars reached 1,500,000 units.
  • The Luce was entirely redesigned.
  • The Eunos Cosmo debuted featuring the world’s first three-rotor rotary engine (20B-REW).
  • The Mazda 787B achieved overall win at the 59th Le Mans 24 Hours race.
  • The HR-X concept car (with hydrogen RE) was unveiled at the Tokyo Motor Show.
  • The RX-7 was completely redesigned (with a 255PS 13B-REW unit).
  • The HR-X2 concept car (with hydrogen RE) was unveiled at the Tokyo Motor Show.
  • First public road trials of a hydrogen RE vehicle in Japan.
  • The RX-01 concept car (powered by a type MSP-RE experimental engine) was unveiled at the Tokyo Motor Show.
  • The RX-7 was face-lifted (engine output increased to 265PS).
  • The RX-7 was face-lifted (engine output increased to 280PS).
  • The RX-EVOLV concept car with the RENESIS experimental engine was unveiled at the Tokyo Motor Show.
  • A design prototype of the Mazda RX-8 (powered by the RENESIS) was unveiled at the Tokyo Motor Show.
  • The Mazda RX-8 (with the RENESIS) introduced.
  • RX-8 Hydrogen RE (development vehicle) was unveiled.
  • RX-8 Hydrogen RE trials began on public roads with approval from the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport.
  • RX-8 Hydrogen RE launched on limited release basis
  • Mazda Delivers First Rotary Hydrogen Vehicles to Corporate Customer Fleets
  • Mazda Delivers Two Rotary Hydrogen Vehicles to Hiroshima Government Authorities
  • Mazda to show RX-8 Hydrogen RE at Norway’s ONS2006 Exhibition
  • Mazda Delivers RX-8 Hydrogen RE to Yamaguchi Government
  • Mazda Hydrogen Vehicle Takes Part in Cold Weather Testing in Hokkaido, Japan
  • Mazda Delivers Hydrogen Rotary Engine Vehicle to Japan Automobile Research Institute
  • Mazda to Participate in Norwegian National Project HyNor by Providing Hydrogen Cars to Norway From Summer
  • Mazda Premacy Hydrogen RE Hybrid Gains Government Approval to Begin Public Road Testing in Japan
  • Mazda Hydrogen Rotary Vehicle Takes to the Road in Norway




Savanna RX-7


The Jaguar C-X16: Concept car to Car of Frankfurt 2011 to Production Car!?

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The C-X16 is one of Jaguar’s latest car out! And its a sports two-seater coupe` Concept car!

The Jaguar C-X16 was first showcased at the Frankfurt Motorshow 2011 which lasted from September 13th to September 25th, 2011.

This Jaguar to quote is “the most compact and responsive Jaguar in a generation” it is also a ‘Hybrid’ and is able to travel at speeds of up to 50 mph on electric power. It is the smallest Jaguar since the XK120 (1948 – 1954) in terms of the length  and has a next-generation supercharged 3.0 litre V6 petrol (hybrid) engine. The C-X16 also has the option of eight speed gearbox changes. This car is said to exemplify Jaguar’s new design route.*1

Traditionally the “C “in Jaguar used to stand for competition and was the letter of choice for the race car called the Jaguar XK120-C; the “C” is more relevant in today’s time for Concept and this car is a concept car making it all the more desirable. The ‘X’ stands for Experimental.

The Jaguar is a rear-wheel drive, with an aluminium structure, it is also well-balanced with a 50:50 weight distribution and this is what’s really needed when overtaking and compliments the  “Push to Pass” button which supplies electrically charged boosts and has an output of 70 kW and 235Nm (the button is red and found on the steering wheel).

These charges are produced by the battery pack which is found behind the seats and is charged progressively as the car brakes, this is called the regenerative braking system.

(“The battery pack is predominantly charged through a rear axle electro-hydraulic brake energy regeneration system.”)*1

There will be a graphic on the dashboard that shows when the boosts can be deployed and all the driver has to do is use the boost button which provides 70kW and 235Nm of torque for up to 10 seconds.

“A hybrid, the C-X16 combines searing performance with beautifully realised styling. The C-X16 measures 4,445 mm in length, 2,048 mm in width and 1,297 mm in height and has a wheelbase measuring 2,622 mm.”*2

CO2 emissions are 165g/km putting it in the middle which is band yellow and in terms of road tax it is grade G which is approximately £165 per year although this car is considered one of the green cars of the Frankfurt Motorshow 2011 as it is a hybrid and if this technology is put to its maximum use by the owner then this car is set to be a green icon for sure, especially as it can run on electric power alone.

Any combination of power with this car is possible whether it be petrol or electric or both. The V6 engine is under the bonnet at the front and this C-X16 will rival Porsche’s 911.

The C-X16 is an upgrade to Jaguar’s 2010 model the C-X75 which is a plug-in hybrid and started of as a concept car (as the C-X16 is although will be manufactured for the road too).

The C-X75 is in the stages of being produced and the C-X16 is similar to the C-X75 as they both share the shape of the front grille (more on this later) and the wrap-around rear lights. The top-speed of the Jaguar C-X16 is limited to 186mph and is capable of 0-62mph in 4.4 seconds and 50-75mph in 2.1 seconds.

The interior has carbon-fibre racing seats covered in red leather and there is use of suede, aluminium and additional carbon-fibre throughout the interior of the car.

The interior has automatic venting systems which appear from being hidden to provide hot or cold air and retract when the desired temperature has been reached. This provides a sophisticated look to the interior and makes use of innovative technology which is showcased intelligently and is nothing less than smooth, as the entirety of the interior is; the knobs for the air-conditioning also have mini-displays on them which show the temperature! Cool! 🙂

The seats can be heated or cooled to desired temperatures a handy function for all conditions. There is also a dual functional switch-gear: “The switchgear is framed in carbon-fibre and features subtle “watch-like” dark chrome highlights while the gearlever and dynamic mode selector switch are surrounded by red anodised aluminium to emphasise their purpose.”*1

“The interior design takes inspiration for elements of its layout from aeronautical ergonomics, such as the joystick-style gearlever and banks of toggle switches that also reference classic racing Jaguars.”*1

With this Jaguar, the emphasis is on its design and technology ensuring that whilst seated in an amazingly looking beast, you will still find a luxurious atmosphere around you. There is a touch-screen on-board computer which can sync with your Blackberry device (or other smart-phones) to enable the driver to access their phone functions; this has been called the ‘Connect and View’ application.

The phone slots into an aluminium tray between the front seats, and then ‘connects’. This connecting of the smart-phone will enable functions such as accessing the driver’s phone music libraries on the touch-screen and the smart-phone’s navigation system as well as enabling the driver to make phone calls or receive them. All these small interior touches are what makes the car a luxurious vehicle!

To provide as much of a taut posture as possible, Jaguar have provided a cacooned feel about the interior to give you a racing feel and this is much to do with the exterior which has taut lines throughout its body to provide the aero-dynamicity and a look which gives the impression of a car that is ready to go at any moment!

“The exterior design is startling in its simplicity, defined by three ‘heartlines’; the front wing crease, the rear haunches that wrap into the tail and the sweeping roofline.”*1

In addition to the exterior being beautifully sculptured, there is the new design element, which has of late, become Jaguar’s latest trademark, I am of course referring to the trapezoidal shaped grille at the front of the car, which is also present in the C-X16’s predecessor concept car the C-X75 and more recently the XF and XJ models.

Alongside the grille are two air-vents on either side (view the photos at the bottom of the page) which scoop into an abyss giving the car a fiery racing appearance.

The bonnet is shaped definitively and has fine in-warding curves on either side with a bump in the middle which appears enchantingly to give the C-X16 further finesse about it; Besides the soft bump are side air vents in darker grey and there is also a lip in darker grey which ever-so slightly protrudes from just beneath the grille.

This colour theme of darker grey is present throughout the interior and exterior of the car giving the car a classy look. And on the sides of the doors, the aluminium body takes an inward straight down the length of the car, providing the aero-dynamicity needed for this hybrid to be able to produce those quick starts and consistent top-speeds whilst flying down those straights. The doors have standard handles (built into the body and do not jut out in the slightest) – Jaguar could have demonstrated further originality in this department like they do with the rest of this concept car, although these handles are practical and fit in well with the look of the car.

If you view the car from the rear you will notice twin exhausts on either side and this gives the car a sportier appearance! The C-X16 has red-brake calipers which fit in with the red motif of the interior and the alloy-wheels are twin spoked in a chrome and darker chromed colour, which many would look at in awe!

There are air-vents on the side of the wings which are red in colour and are far from an eye-sore. The C-X16 has a similarity with the 1961 E-type as they both have a rear window which opens (to the right side – if viewed from the rear) in extravagant fashion.

The lights at the rear are red in colour and are horizontal and lengthy and the within the middle of these horizontal lights are semi-circled brake lights. The front lights are xenon and big in shape completing the look of the C-X16. What this Jaguar could be said to be missing are indicators on the wing mirrors and a spoiler, which could give the C-X16 a further completeness about it, although many may disagree.

The body of the car is made from aluminium rather than steel, giving the car extra lightness which is what makes this car a dream to race or push to its limits on say the German Autobahn’s (Motorway)! And here’s the scientific bit, as the car heats up there is a liquid cooling system which works on both the electric battery pack and the electric motor.

This deliberate styling and use of the best technology about, ensures that the car is agile, handles well, has the fastest of acceleration times, and has shorter braking distances, which makes the C-X16, a driver’s desired package, in any car let alone this conceptualized reality, which for many a Jaguar fan, will be a wish come true.

And to further add to Jaguar’s forte` there is an intelligent start/stop system: “The system can shut down the engine in just 300 milliseconds after the car has come to rest and utilises a Twin Solenoid Starter (TSS) that is capable of restarting it in the time it takes the driver’s foot to travel from the brake to the accelerator. This provides for faster recovery and seamless performance and is the first time such a system has been used with a supercharged engine.”*1

The production road car will enter the automobile arena as soon as 2013 although Jaguar have been keeping it to themselves whether the C-X16 will be produced (costing an estimated £55,000 -£70,000!) or whether the alternative (the F-Type) which will be a convertible (the F-type looks to be out in 2013) and inspired by the C-X16 will be the one to take the stage in place of a hard-top C-X16 production car!?

I’ll conclude with a quote from the chief designer of the car, Ian Callum:

“Jaguars have always been dramatically different. With the C-X16 we have moved the current award-winning design language on to the next generation, creating a car that is the very essence of future Jaguar performance.”*1


*1- (Jaguar.com)

*2- (Greencarsite.co.uk)

SWARAJ – Swaraj Mazda and Punjab Tractors Limited – India’s original pioneer!

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The Swaraj Brand, Mazda and Punjab Tractors Ltd have been around since the beginning of the Indian Automobile scene; selling Tractors and vehicles such as Ambulances, Police carriers, Water Tankers, Buses, Trucks, and special vehicles such as Harvesters, Orchard Tractors, Tourist Buses, Rail Track Inspection Vehicles, Fork Lifts and Crane Vehicles.

Video of Swaraj Tractors

As for Swaraj and Punjab Tractors Ltd they have a rich history:

Punjab Tractors limited was promoted by the Indian Government’s department for Industries and Commerce – PSIDC (Punjab State Industrial Development Corporation)  as one of its projects in 1970 for the manufacturing of agricultural tractors, its objective was to promote new industrial projects in the State of Punjab. Swaraj tractors conceived in 1965 by a team of dedicated engineers and scientists working at Central Mechanical Research Institute.


“The Unit went into production in 1974. The tractor was based on completely indigenous design and was the result of six years of design, development and field proving effort at the Central Mechanical Engineering Research Institute (CMERI), a national laboratory under the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) of the Government of India. The group of design engineers, who had developed the first model at CMERI, were later transferred to Punjab Tractors Limited to commercialise the product.”

In 1983 the Swaraj design along with its promoter Punjab Tractors Ltd who now owned Swaraj (since 1970), went into a financial collaboration with Toyokogyo Ltd, a company from Japan which was now working with PTL to manufacture light commercial vehicles; the name Swaraj Vehicles Ltd was formed.

A year on (1984) was a time for a Joint Venture (JV) which occured between Punjab Tractor Ltd, Mazda Motor Corporation (Japan) & Sumitomo Corporation (Japan). Swaraj Vehicles Ltd was renamed Swaraj Mazda  Ltd. This JV’s commercial operations began in 1986 and by 1987 the JV produced and introduced an indigenously developed bus. Swaraj and Punjab Tractors Ltd had forged an alliance with Mazda in particular and this saw them working together in an alliance which has seen much success until 2009.

Between the years 2004 and 2009 there was a drift between Mazda and Swaraj as both companies had their own agendas – for example Swaraj were focusing on Swaraj tractors, Swaraj engines, Swaraj Automotives and Swaraj scooters, whereas Mazda were looking to focus on passenger cars.

In 2004 Mazda withdrew from its partnership with Swaraj and since then this has seen Swaraj have a couple of name changes from Swaraj Mazda to – Swaraj Buses and Trucks Ltd, this indicated an end to working with Mazda (who ceased to be a shareholder in 2005). Mazda however gave the go – ahead initially to Swaraj to continue using their name without any royalty fees till 2007.

The Mazda Motor Corporation later in 2007 also notified Swaraj to not use their name in alliance with Swaraj Enterprise and thus the company name that used to be Swaraj Mazda was now going to be called Swaraj Vehicles Ltd as agreed by the board of directors this however was contested by the other shareholders such as PTL and did not go through. Swaraj no longer used the name of Mazda in their title.

Punjab Tractors Ltd were now without their main partner and a lot of speculation surrounded the Swaraj brand, with links to a TATA take-over, this didn’t happen instead Mahindra Tractors had made a smart investment in 2008 which saw them buy all of PTL’s remaining shares in Swaraj.

This investment by Mahindra saw conflict over the use of the Swaraj name with Sumitomo who had purchased a 41% controlling stake in Swaraj Trucks and Buses Ltd (Swaraj Mazda) from Mazda in 2005, the Sumitomo Corporation purchased PTL’s remaining shares in Swaraj Trucks and Buses Ltd (Swaraj Mazda) in 2009; Mahindra and Mahindra along with PTL took the case to court whereby Sumitomo were ordered to continue using the name for a further two years only – in 2006 Sumitomo hooked up with Isuzu motors and in 2010 Swaraj (Swaraj Mazda) became SML Isuzu Ltd this was one year before the Sumitomo Corporation were ordered to stop using the Swaraj Brand name.

Today there is speculation that TATA are looking to buy a 50% or more stake in SML Isuzu.

Here is a quote from Swaraj and Mahindra and Mahindra :


“The combination of Swaraj’s longstanding reputation with our cutting edge design and manufacturing has made the name Swaraj synonymous with power, reliability, and expertise.  We enjoy a market share of nearly 12 percent and a community of more than 700,000 satisfied owners in India alone.  We bring our customers excellent tractors and product support at 600 dealerships across India.  We are 2,100 dedicated, highly trained, and customer-centric employees working to bring you the best in farming equipment and customer support.

In addition to our strong presence in India, Swaraj tractors are used across the world in the US, Nigeria, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Ghana.  In each region we enter, we seek to provide farmers with tractors and implements precisely suited to their agricultural conditions, helping them maximize their prosperity.”

Ravinder the CEO of M & M Ltd Swaraj Division says:


“We feel honored to get an opportunity to introduce our brand SWARAJ to you. SWARAJ was India’s first indigenously designed, developed & commercialized tractor manufactured by erstwhile Punjab Tractors Limited (PTL), a company promoted by Punjab Government. In 2007, PTL was acquired by Mahindra & Mahindra, one of the world’s largest tractor manufacturers. Mahindra & Mahindra is a leading Indian business conglomerate with group revenues of $ 6.7 billion. Mahindra & Mahindra, Farm Equipment Sector, of which Swaraj brand is now the part, has the distinction of being the only Tractor Company in the world at present to have received two of the world’s top most quality prizes i.e. Japan Quality Medal and Deming prize. We have a tractor portfolio of 9 models with more than 100 variants in the range of 22 HP to 75 HP. We have a strong domestic presence with more than 0.7 million satisfied customers. Swaraj tractors, ruling the rural hinterlands for more than three decades, are synonymous with power, ruggedness & reliability. We have also expanded our presence in the overseas markets including select African and SAARC nations.”

As you can see – the Swaraj brand has a long-standing history with many companies trying their utmost to keep this brand to themselves – however Swaraj has withstood the test of time and is still continuing to operate as an Indian brand name and company which exports world-wide and to many developing countries and also America.

“In Hindi, the word “SWARAJ” means freedom from bondage – and self – rule. Since P.T.L. was the only first largest tractor project in India, moreover fully based upon Indian technology. So SWARAJ was appropriately chosen as its brand name. SWARAJ group sells its products under this same brand.


“With more than 2 lacs of tractors and harvesters combines operating in Indians farms, SWARAJ are now well-established brand name in the country.”

(Same source as above)

The Original factory where the tractors were built by Swaraj and PTL is at S.A.S Nagar – Punjab in the City of Mohali. The factory was one of its kind in the industrial town which is 5km away from Chandigarh. The Tractor factory was the beginning of this town.

“A Tractor is a self-propelled vehicle capable of pulling a load. It is usually powered by an internal combustion engine, and is used on highways and in factories; but its greatest use is on agricultural land. Tractors can be classified according to their main functions such as farm tractors, industrial tractors and highway tractors. The farm tractor has revolutionised the mode of farming wherever it has been used. It has relieved farmers of arduous work and made great increases in production possible. Through the use of the tractor, farmers can control power that is equivalent to many horses and men. The average man is rated at 1/10HP, but when he drives a 20HP tractor across his fields – he is doing the work of 200 men. Tractors are used for a variety of purposes such as ploughing, harrowing, sowing, harvesting, pumping and transporting.”

Click to access MITI-023_B6CS6.pdf

“These tractors have contributed significantly to the green revolutions in India. Tractors are also being exported to a number of developing countries.”

It is the farmers that are the most important to the country and the alliance between Swaraj and Mahindra has seen the farmer benefit not only through the use of the tractor they purchase but also in the way they make the purchase; Mahindra Finance has been providing customized loans to farmers and as a result this has helped India; in 2004 a memorandum of understanding was signed by the Syndicate Bank and Punjab Tractors Ltd (Swaraj) to provide finance to farmers who purchased Swaraj Tractors – where the bank would finance 95% of the farmers costs and the farmer would have to finance 5% themselves. This is just an example of how banks and Swaraj have been operating – there are other similar agreements between banks and Swaraj too depending on the state and banks of India.

The Swaraj tractors have certainly been effective in India and World-wide and the company will only look to grow further in the tractor and automotive industries. Swaraj has been doing much for India and its development and its operations in developing countries is helping to raise the standards of World development. To conclude Swaraj has survived through a lot and many evolutions along the way and has always adapted and evolved – it is truly one of India’s pioneers and has shown this through many decades – they will want to continue doing this throughout the future too.

I’ll leave you with the quote from one of Swaraj’s adverts : “Swaraj Tractors – Kissan Ka Power, Desh Ka Bharosa!” – Which translates to Swaraj Tractors the Farmer’s Power and the Countries’ Trust!


Additional Information:

“In 1974 it went into commercial production with SWARAJ 724, 26.5 bhp as its first model. During its 38 years of production, it has not only expanded its manufacturing capacity to more than 24000 tractors per annum but added more products into its manufacturing range.”

Its product range includes the following (FE – Is the vehicle specification given to denote it is a tractor/truck/lorry (tractors are under the heavy vehicle category and could also denote Fuel Economy):


Swaraj 722 super                                                                  Swaraj 724 FE

Swaraj 733 FE                                                                        Swaraj 735 FE

Swaraj 744                                                                             Swaraj 834 FE                                Swaraj 855

Here’s a timeline of the key dates and what happened at these times in Swaraj and Punjab Tractors Ltd history.

The major manufacturers of tractors in India are:

  • Escorts Ltd.
  • Mahindra and Mahindra
  • Ashok Leyland
  • Swaraj Enterprise
  • Force Motors

Special Features of Swaraj Tractors at the time of writing include:

  • Higher capacity 60 liters diesel tank
  • Oil pressure gauge
  • Water temperature gauge
  • Ammeter
  • Lockable battery

You can visit: http://business.mapsofindia.com/automobile/heavy-vehicle/tractors.html for a full specification/features list of other non-Swaraj tractors.

You can also visit: http://www.indianmirror.com/indian-industries/tractor.html for an insight into India’s Tractor Industry.

There are still some serious issues being looked at, and to be resolved for farmers such as how to economise on fuel (through the effective way of changing gears at the right time), research has shown that many farmers spend a lot on the cost of fuel for their tractors and there is a need for support for the farmers with the help of efficiently economising their fuel consumption – research is ongoing as how best to support farmers, such as through the use of digital technology to inform the tractor driver as when to change gear. Another issue which is ongoing research at the time of writing is the dangerous vibrations being sent from the tractor to the driver and the threat it poses to the drivers head. Lastly it is important to stress the importance of farmers, tractors and agriculture, here’s a quote from the above website: “India is an agrarian economy and so mainly depends on agricultural produce. As a result, tractors play an important role in the growth of the economy itself. Tractors help farmers increase the output and in turn help the economy to grow further.”



1965            Govt. of  India‘s  research institute(CMERI) at Durgapur initiates design &     development of SWARAJ tractor based  on indigenous know how.




Punjab Govt. through PSIDC acquires SWARAJ tractor’s design from CMERI and establishesPunjab Tractors Ltd. (PTL) for its commercialization.




PTL sets up SWARAJ Project for 5,000 tractors per annum at a capital outlay of Rs. 37.0 million with an equity base of Rs 11.0 million.




Swaraj 724 (26.5 HP) tractor commercially introduced.




2nd tractor model SWARAJ 735(39 HP) developed by own R&D, commercially introduced.




3rd Tractor model SWARAJ 720 (19.5 HP) developed by own R&D, commercially introduced. 


Maiden equity divided declared.




Guided by social concerns and responsibility, PTL takes over PSIDC’s sick scooters unit –Punjab Scooters Ltd. (subsequently renamed as SWARAJ Automotives Ltd.)

India’s first Self propelled Harvester Combine – SWARAJ 8100 developed by own R&D, commercially introduced.

SWARAJ Foundry Division set up in Backward area.




Issue of maiden Bonus Shares (2:5), paid-up equity moves to Rs 15.4 million. 




4th Tractor Model – SWARAJ 855 (55 HP) developed by own R&D, commercially introduced.

Expansion of annual capacity to 12,000 tractors per annum at Plant 1.




SWARAJ MAZDA Ltd. promoted in technical and financial collaboration with Mazda Motor Corpn. & Sumitomo Corpn. Japan for manufacture of Light Commercial Vehicles. PTL’s equity participation is Rs. 30.4 million (29%) and that of Mazda and Sumitomo’s Rs. 27.0 million (26%).




SWARAJ Industrial Forklift Trucks developed by own R&D, commercially introduced.




SWARAJ ENGINES Ltd. promoted in technical and financial collaboration with Kirloskar Oil Engines Ltd.(KOEL) for manufacture of diesel engines. PTL’s equity participation is Rs. 6.9 million (33%) and that of KOEL’s Rs 3.6 million (17%). 




1st Right Issue (1:1) at a premium of Rs 50/- per share (plus reservation of 200 Shares per employee) paid up equity moves to Rs 31.6 million.




2nd Right Issues (1:2) at a premium of Rs 60/- per share (plus reservation of 200 Shares per employee) paid-up equity moves to Rs 50.6 million.




2nd issue of Bonus Shares (1:1), paid up capital moves to Rs. 101.2 million.




Annual tractor capacity expanded to 24,000 per annum at Plant 1. 




Setup of tractor Plant II at Village Chappercheri with annual capacity of 12,000 per annum.




3rd issue of Bonus Shares (1:1), paid up equity moves to Rs. 202.5 million.




Commencement of expansion to 60,000 tractors(30,000 at each plant). Capital outlay of Rs 1000 million, funded mainly through internal accruals. 




5th and 6th tractor models – SWARAJ 733 (34 HP) & SWARAJ 744 (48 HP) developed by own R&D, commercially introduced.

FY 1999’s divided @ 250% was corporate India’s highest.




Expansion of annual tractor capacity to 60,000 completed.

4th issue of Bonus Shares (2:1), paid up equity moves to Rs 607.6 million.




PTL won National Championship trophy in competition organized by All India Management Association (AIMA) for young managers.

Economic times and Boston Consulting Group selects PTL as one of the India’s finest 10 companies out of Economic times top 500 Companies.




Cumulative tractor sales crosses 5,00,000.




PSIDC’s disinvestment of its entire Equity holding (23.49%) in PTL in favour of CDC Financial Services (Mauritius) Ltd. With this, total holding of CDC & its associates in PTL stands at 28.48%.




7th & 8th tractor models – Swaraj 939 (41 HP) & Swarj 834 (34 HP) developed by own R&D, commercially introduced.




PTL disinvested 15,73,000 euity shares of Rs. 10/- each of Swaraj Mazda Ltd. (constituting approx. 15% of SML’s paid up capital) in favour of Sumitomo Corporation, Japan, a joint venture partner in Swaraj Mazda Ltd. at a total consideration of Rs. 629.2 million




CDC/Actis Group and Burman Family’s disinvestment of their Equity holding in PTL (43.3%) in favour of Mahindra Group (M&M).

M&M made open offer to shareholders for another 20% equity of the Company.

Mahindra Group’s equity holding in the Company stands at 64.6%

Cumulative Tractor Sales cross 600,000.

Swaraj Track Type Combine designed and developed by in-house R&D, commercially launched




Swaraj 3 Tonne Battery forklift, designed and developed by in-house R&D, commercially launched


India: Fiat and Tata joint venture to have a shake-up!

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Fiat and Tata have together disclosed that they are shaking up their joint venture with a new distribution agreement – which will see Tata engaging in less business with Fiat; is this an end to the Fiat – Tata 50:50 business?

Read on to find out more….

Firstly the Fiat group is looking to make a further presence in India with Chrysler Jeep, Alfa Romeo and Maserati all to launch within India soon.

Fiat have a majority stake in Chrysler the US car maker, they made this 70% acquisition since 2009.

As many of you may know Fiat have since 2006 had a join venture with Indian Tata Motors, it was however announced this month (May 2012) that they are re-aligning their distribution venture, which is a 50:50 partnership.

The reason behind this Fiat claim is a drop in sales within Fiat and their 178 Fiat franchised Tata dealers which have their presence in 129 cities across India.

Since 2006 the joint-venture has produced some 190,000 cars and 337,000 powertrains. Tata motors have throughout this venture been key to distributing and marketing Fiat cars. Although the distribution of the Fiat cars will come to an end Tata will still work to manufacture new cars with Fiat including the production of powertrains. The companies have referred to this as the new distribution agreement. This agreement will see Tata put a halt to the servicing and selling of Fiat cars within India.

It’s possible that Fiat may have thought of Tata as lacking in the distribution side due to their acquisition of British car makers Jaguar Land Rover which occurred in 2008; and this could have been seen as an acquisition too soon after the joint venture with Fiat began and as a consequence a lack of sales on the Fiat side. Now Fiat have put together an action plan to resolve this issue of poor sales by going it alone.

“Our customers were not getting the international feel. There were lot of products and hence congestion at Tata dealerships which was not giving our customers the experience that we sought”. –  Fiat spokesperson.

Many may point out that Tata’s 2008 acquisition was the profitable and correct decision to make, seeing Tata gain a foot-hold on the European and American market and seeing their profits rise too.

The revenue at Jaguar Land Rover rose 41% in the quarter ended in December 2012, showing that Tata made a profitable decision and Tata saw their net total of sales owed to Jaguar Land Rover which brought in a whopping 70%.

Whether this has meant a loss in business for Tata is something only the Italian company Fiat would know – however it could be said by many that Tata could have performed better with all their credentials and successful history within India to make Fiat an upcoming runner in the car industry in India. Fiat after all are a car giant themselves.

What do you think – Could Tata have done a better job?

In the document released to the press (May 2, 2012) both Fiat and Tata say: “Fiat and Tata have agreed that, in order to further develop the Fiat brand in India, management control of Fiat’s commercial and distribution activities will be handed over to a separate Fiat Group owned company. Currently Tata Motors has been managing the distribution responsibility of the Fiat branded products in India through joint Tata-Fiat dealerships.”

For those customers of Fiat and Tata produced cars the companies said: Both, Fiat and Tata Motors will endeavour to ensure a smooth transition of sales and service support to customers and the dealer network.”

Fiat have recently spoke of this new network and the setting up of independent dealerships across 20 locations and they have a showroom in New Delhi.

The re-alignment of this joint venture will still see Tata doing fine as “Tata Motors are India’s largest automobile company, with consolidated revenues of Rs. 123,133 crores ($ 27 billion) in 2010-11.”

“Through subsidiaries and associate companies, Tata Motors has operations in the UK, South Korea, Thailand, Spain and South Africa.”

“With over 6.5 million Tata vehicles present within India, Tata Motors is the country’s market leader in commercial vehicles and among the top three in passenger vehicles. It is also the world’s fourth largest truck and bus manufacturer.”

“Tata cars, buses and trucks are being marketed in several countries in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, South Asia, South East Asia and South America.” It is evident that Tata are very active in being renowned Internationally however in direct contrast to this here’s a couple of quotes from Tata:

Last year Tata Group Chief Ratan Tata had said “the Fiat association needed to be critically examined to optimise its potential.”

And Tata Motors also said of the Fiat Joint Venture:

“I have to admit that so far, the venture with Fiat has not been as active as we had thought”.

The latest in the world of car manufacturing is that Fiat are looking to possibly work further with Suzuki as they have been doing alongside Tata to produce Maruti Suzuki small diesel engines, (Fiat and Tata acquired this contract recently). However any further Fiat operation with Suzuki will possibly be a lone initiative, without its partner Tata.

As for the new distribution agreement it seems Fiat are certain they can do better whilst working solitarily – and an interesting statistic for Fiat’s actions to go it alone is: “In the year ended March 31, the venture sold 16,073 vehicles in India, a 24% decline, compared with the 2.2% increase in passenger-car sales across the industry.”

India is a big market which Fiat will want to do well within this year and it seems the Italian company will be venturing out in India with other more luxurious cars from their fleet being introduced such as Alfa Romeo and Maserati, its other foreign competitors and producers Ford, Honda and Nissan have recently acted to take more control of their own operations too.

Is this year – Fiat’s year? And will this new Fiat company do well without Tata?

Let us know and leave a comment….

Additional Information:

Fiat, which will set up a new company to sell its models and build on the network of Fiat-Tata dealerships, does have history within India although its popularity has waded from  – its 1100 sedan which was sold under licence in India from the mid-1950s to 1997, with the Fiat 1100 Delight and then as the Padmini which now operates mainly as Taxi’s in India.

(Fiat India Automobiles) – The official name of the Fiat company within India.

The Punto hatchback and Linea sedan are in India through the joint venture with Tata Motors as is the Palio.


Bollywood actress Sushmita Sen reveals the Fiat Linea T-Jet. (Mumbai 2010.)

Enrico Antanasio will head the new company ( Enrico Atanasio was appointed senior VP of commercial operations for Fiat India Automobiles Ltd. July 2011) – yet to be named, said Fiat’s spokesperson. The Italian car maker will be working within an estimated time range of a minimum of two years to put together its own network.

Tata Motors chief financial officer CR Ramakrishnan said in February 2012 the joint venture with Fiat was not producing expected results or sales.

Fiat chief Executive Sergio Marchionne said in March 2012 the partnership “has tried to do too much”.

China is the world’s largest car industry and India is the second within Asia – with this in mind – Fiat alongside Tata sold only 20,000 (approximately) cars in India.

Maruti Suzuki, is India’s largest car manufacturer alongside Tata.

“Many car manufacturers have supported in the growth of Indian car industry and some of the major car manufacturers in India are Maruti Suzuki, Hindustan Motors, Tata Motors, Mahindra, and Mahindra and other foreign carmakers that have also made as top car manufacturers in India are Toyota, Ford, Maruti Suzuki, Skoda, Hyundai and Honda.”

“Tata Motors is by far the-best performing major auto maker stock this year.  It’s up a whopping 76% compared to second placed Toyota (TM) at 23% and third placed General Motors (GM) which is up around 19% year to date ending April 18.”

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