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Home arrow News arrow Education and training arrow First automobile design and build competition in India enjoys tremendous response
First automobile design and build competition in India enjoys tremendous response Print E-mail
Written by Isha   
Tuesday, 25 December 2007
BAJA SAEINDIA culminated on Day 3 with participation of 411 engineering students

Pithampur (Indore) | December 24, 2007: The BAJA SAEINDIA 2007, India's first ever vehicle design and build competition at the National Automotive Testing and R&D Infrastructure Project (NATRIP) facility in Pithampur near Indore. The event hosted participation of 27 engineering student teams which were shortlisted out of 52, nationwide. 411 bright, aspiring engineering students who are presently studying in their undergraduate course participated in the event with great gusto and passion.  BAJA SAEINDIA, which was organized for the first time in India is the biggest HR platform for Automobile and Mechanical Engineering students to be inducted into renowned automobile manufacturing companies. The event was an opportunity for the students to test and hone their marketing and entrepreneurial skills besides their technical know how. India's first and only Formula One driver – Narain Karthikeyan and the Guest of Honour at BAJA SAEINDIA charged up students on the last day of the event.

Dr. Surajit Mitra – Joint Secretary, Ministry of Heavy Industries, Government of India, was the Chief Guest at the event. He was delighted and proud to witness the scale of BAJA SAEINDIA which would prove to be a milestone in the history of India's automotive progress.

The Winning Team was rewarded Rs.5 lakh as prize money. The runner up team, Rs.3 lakh and the second runner up team took away Rs.2 lakh as a reward for their stupendous efforts.

The 41-member jury panel, comprising of the automobile industry's technical leaders and key journalists from the media, adjudged students' efforts. The evaluation point system was spread over three evaluation rounds – Static (300 points), Dynamic (300 points) and Endurance (400 points.)

Day One comprised of the Static Evaluation Round in which the jury tested the presentation skills, which is seen as a vital part of personality development in the corporate world. College of Engineering, Guindy, Anna University, Chennai won the award for the Best Design and was adjudged 159 out of the stipulated 200 points. The runner-up was K.K. Wagh Engineering College of Nashik with 149 points.

The Cost Award was bagged by Rajalakshmi Engineering College of Chennai with M. C. K. V. Institute of Engineering of Howrah, West Bengal was adjudged as one of the runners-up.

The most prestigious Technology Innovation Award was again bagged by Rajalakshmi Engineering College of Chennai with College of Engineering, Guindy, Anna University, Chennai adjudged as the runners-up. Here various teams developed 4-wheel-drive, 4-steering drive, novel suspensions, 2 stage gear box, novel gear ratio enhancement mechanism, carbon fibre body etc. The Cost Award & Technology Innovation Awards, both were sponsored by TATA Motors.

Day Two was more exciting, when the vehicles hit the specially designed test track. The Max Speed Award was again given to Rajalakshmi Engineering College of Chennai, and SGGS Institute of Engineering & Technology, Nanded was adjudged runners-up. Similarly, the Max Acceleration Award was bagged by Punjab Engineering College; SVNIT, Surat was runners-up. Hill climb tests and Maneuverability tests were also very interesting.  

Day Three hosted the most important, Endurance Evaluation Tests, which was conducted over a torture track of 3.5 km designed by Motocross expert – Shyam Kothari. This final round of testing during which the jury Dr. Mahadevan, Harshit Merchant and Hormazd Sorabjee of Autocar India declared the names of the winners.

"We have reached the end of this scintillating vehicle design and build competition that BAJA SAEINDIA conducted for the first time in our country. I am extremely proud to have witnessed and adjudged the talent that our students possess. The very purpose of this event was to scoop out talented and focused brains from all the engineering institutions and provide them with a platform which, in early days was difficult to identify. We have seen that this year, which is the first, has garnered overwhelming responses from both the industry and the student/faculty fraternity. This can be taken as a sign that will place BAJA SAEINDIA at a much higher pedestal with many more automobile manufacturers contributing to the cause," said Dr. Pawan Goenka, President, SAEINDIA and President, Automotive Sector, Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd.

An elated Team Leader of Rajalakshmi College of Engineering said, "Our efforts have finally achieved fruition with us bagging the first prize in the first year of BAJA SAEINDIA. These three days of testing and evaluation have been rigorous and enlightening for us. We are grateful to the organizers for having created this platform which has given us the opportunity to show our prowess in automobile design and engineering. It was a pleasure gaining knowledge from the technical leaders of the automobile industry. in various workshops. Baja has been extremely competitive and it was not easy to create and market the best all-terrain and offroad vehicle. Seeing our future right in front of us has been a different feeling altogether. This real time exercise that we have been through is something that we will remember at all points in our careers as parts of the automobile industry."

SAEINDIA is planning to organize this event on a much larger scale in January 2009 as the automotive industry is sitting up and noticing the response of the 2007 event. The BAJA SAEINDIA 2007 has also underlined Indore on the automotive map which is expected to experience a sea change with respect to better amenities, robust infrastructure, improved hospitality and enhanced tourism prospects. Pithampur, where the event was held is a significant suburb on the map as an important location for such activities because it has been playing host to some of India's renowned automobile manufacturers.

The convener of the BAJA SAEINDIA 2007 vehicle design and build competition was Dr. Kamal Vora, who is also Sr. Asst. Director at Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI.) NATRIP contributed 268 acres out of its 4123 acre which is slated to host a world-class vehicle testing facility. The sponsors of the event were JK Tyres, ITW Chemin, Ford India, ARAI, AVTEC, General Motors, Maruti Suzuki and TVS Motors. Lombardini India supplied engines, Mahindra & Mahindra supplied the transmissions and BPCL supplied Speed Petrol to the students at no cost.
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