OVERDRIVE comes to the edge of 17 with a bang. It all starts with Bert who's like our own Man From Mars - you know, the one that goes out at night eatin' cars - this time it was him sating his appetite for SUVs. From fording rivers deep in the all-new Ford Endeavour to climbing mountains high in the Audi Q3s and Q5s on the Independence Quattro Drive 2015. And despite the challenges thrown by the Leh of the land, Bert and the boys (and girls) got the Quattro cars all the way up to the Rezang La War Memorial to pay tribute to all the martyrs of the 1962 war - what better way to celebrate the Independence Day!
Meanwhile, a little south, the cruel summer of Rajasthan served as the perfect backdrop for Rishaad Mody and team to go hunting for the fastest roads that cars like the Mini Cooper S, Audi RS 7 and Merc GLA deserve. New OD recruit, Rahul Richard confirmed this as the best corporate induction programme ever. Off-roading in the sun and surf in Goa in the Mahindra Super Thar wasn't too bad either, he says, as he dusts off some of the sand.
Shumi had fun on the Rajasthan drive too but it was two wheels too many for our motorcycle man - so off he went riding across a verdant monsoon Maharashtra on the funnest tourers India has to offer right now - there was much debate on the potency of the eye of the Tiger (XCx) Versys the eye of the (V-)strom. And then, a BMW R 1150 GS and a Benelli Trek Amazonas were thrown in too. Just for fun. Of course, when he's off adventure touring, he imagines his beloved Ferine and Ferocitas singing Breakfast Club ballads in the garage. So off he went again with Ferine, Tisya, MyKTM, Fiona and one nameless entity for Team OVERDRIVE's day out on their own bikes - and yes, the rain kept falling, down down down. After much hemming and hawing about all the rain and the waterproofing required to ride in it, Rishaad happily went off to the dry and smooth BIC at Delhi to ride the new Yamaha YZF-R3.
Bert's stint in the new-to-India, Fiat Punto Evo Abarth has him telling anyone who'll listen that the little hot hatch's got sting. Yes, Bert, we know - and you will too, if you read our lead story under motoring news this month. Jamshed too has had an eventful month - what with a drive in the Merc S 63 AMG and then, a long day out at Rolls-Royce's Bespoke division - trying to figure out what it is that makes R-R the ultimate when it comes to customisation.
Of course, we've got the best comparisons lined up this month. Halley pits the Creta against its five serious contenders - the Duster, EcoSport, Terrano, XUV500 and the all-new S-Cross. The Ford Figo Aspire isn't spared either - the Amaze, Xcent and Zest take on the new sub-4m sedan.
Back home, Bob Rupani gets all the 411 on Tata's new armoured personnel carrier, the Kestrel. And then, when he's through with cars, he goes out to car-bars where the people meet - Bob takes a break from automobiles at the gorgeous automobile-themed pub at Dungarpur Mews.
Flash is fast, Flash is cool but Alan D'cruz is both faster and cooler - or so he tries to prove as he finds his match on aracetrack in F4 cars at the Michelin Pilot Drive Experience.
Vaishali Dinakaran takes a U-turn in the history of Indian motor racing as rally veteran Nazir Hoosein takes her back to the golden era of the sport. In its second edition in India, the Rainforest Challenge throws up some sweet surprises. And the Vento Cup gets mixed reactions from the drivers and instructors. Our new OD recruit gives you a full report. And from far across the seas, our off-shore contributor, Shashank tells you what it takes to get massive commercial ships running - 400,000PS, it seems. Yes, for our anniversary, we DID think big. All this and more in this glittering issue of OVERDRIVE. Go grab a copy now!