We are confused as to who is more interesting – the traveler or the vehicle. Read on.
Here is a vehicle that can, probably, only boast about a 2-stroke engine and a single cylinder. It can hardly store 10 liters of fuel in a go. Chugging the humble beast across the tough terrains and infamously atrocious roads, Christoph Eitlinger is exploring the hinterlands of India.
You cannot roll down the windows of this vehicle for it doesn’t have any! It forces upon you a natural air cooler. Should you get a call while riding? Don’t bother! Taking any phone calls while riding this is as futile as carrying water to the sea for the noise of the engine, despite it smallness, will likely overpower your vocal chords. Often, the smell of diesel wades in and prolonged riding pinches your rear when contacted with even the slightest of rugged roads.
They are by no means the only way to raid-de’-India! But, they are one of the most amusing and adventurous vehicles still known to mankind.
They can attain a maximum downhill speed of 55kmph. With the Indian subcontinent sprawling across 3.2 million kilometers, you wouldn’t even want to guess the time these vehicles will take to measure the entire length and breadth of the country.
Before we introduce this vehicle to you, we need you to get acquainted with its father.
The Bible of netizens, Wikipedia explains it neatly.
“At the end of World War II, most Italians, badly affected by the war, lacked means of transport and, more importantly, the financial means to acquire and maintain full-sized four-wheeled vehicles. In 1947, the inventor of the Vespa, aircraft designer Corradino D’Ascanio, came up with the idea of building a light three-wheeled commercial vehicle to power Italy’s economic reconstruction, an idea which found favour with Enrico Piaggio, the son of the firm’s founder, Rinaldo…”
(Yes, Vespa pawned them!)
Corradino D’Ascanio is the man behind this marvel.
If you were in Madagascar or Tanzania, you would have to call a Bajaji to hire D’Ascanio’s ‘hoverboard’. If you are visiting Bali, you would be riding a Bemo. In most other parts of Southeast Asia and the Indian subcontinent, you would be on board an auto rickshaw or a tuk-tuk. Yes, it’s the motorised cousin of the traditional Indian rickshaws that run on the power of upper body strength and pedals.
Coming back to the Indian story, these Tuk-tuks double up as a taxis and rule the roads, if not the hearts of the people. No doubt, these are ideal for maneuvering through the alleys.
Eiltlinger from Germany is traveling with his own Tuktuk around India. He has shared his plans for the trip on Facebook with the wanderlusts of the subcontinent. Right now, he is in Mysore and would love to give travel enthusiasts a chance to take a ride on his Tuktuk. Are you game?
This is what Christoph’s TukTuk looks like!