Clean Sweep

At Quarter Mile, we have a thing for fast, affordable, small cars. So when a certain good looking white Polo was spotted in town, screaming past a couple of times, with an exhaust note that could have only come from a petrol four cylinder of the 1.6, we had to crack it down. We began enquiring, but with no registration number and no idea of where the owner lives, it was taking longer than usual.

Then one casual afternoon, thanks to the magical and slightly annoying world of Facebook, we got tagged in a photo with the Polo in it. While it is hateful to get tagged in eleventy million posts everyday on stuff we have nothing to do about, this seemed like god sent. As it turned out, the owner was already out friend on Facebook. Like they say, it’s a ‘small world’.

As few personal messages shot at each other, we were back in business. The car was ready and set next to a graffiti wall, it was looking better than we had imagined. Twenty two year old Abhishek P V bought his Polo 1.6 Highline in 2012, and like any of us buying a car back then, wanted a hatchback that performs like a fast sedan. He wanted a small car that is loud enough and started out the mods with the wheels. Lenso Project D monoblocks finished in black with a red outline wasn’t a bad choice. It goes well with the European looks of the car. Styling touches are minimal but we appreciate it when a car isn’t overdone.

Top Highlights

" In the hottest season of midsummer, the small wind blowing just now suddenly stopped, and the suffocating heat returned."

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The headlamps have body coloured eye lids on them and here is a red tow hook on the front bumper. He also gave liberal doses of carbon fibre vinyl on the roof and hood of the car while debadging the rear of any mono grams.

It is underneath that Abhishek has concentrated more. Open the hood and there is a k&N Apollo cold air intake system staring at you. The engine also benefits from a Pete’s remap taking the 4x2x1 exhaust into consideration. The combination of better breathing, exhaust and remap has worked wonders with the 1.6L VW lump, boosting midrange and top end performance considerably. Bilstein B14s at their lowest ride setting are the main reason why Abhishek’s Polo looks this good, but their effect of handling needs to be experienced. To exploit the performance and handling to the max, the Polo runs Tarox G88 slotted rotors and better brake pads.

Abhishek has bigger plans with the car with a GTI grille, GTI headlamps, Reiger body kit and Miltek exhaust, on top of his wish list. And just as we were going to print, we got a call from the guy saying he already got the headlamps. That’s one down, three more to go !!

Mercedes E350 cabriolet

Blame the Hollywood, but surely there is a certain charm to a convertible Mercedes. It may not be the fastest or the prettiest, but people have always fallen for them. We didn’t do a road test for the E cabriolet when it was launched, but since then the desire has been building up to drive one. So last month when a drive to Amby valley was in order, we rang Mercedes to borrow one.

And let’s start with the niggles first. The roof squeaks where it meets the windscreen frame, especially when driven over road imperfections. Then is the AIRCAP system which when raised from the top of the windscreen, deflects the air flow to cut down on the turbulence. There isn’t much of an effect except it looks ugly, catches bugs and increases the drag. So it’s best to leave the two- the AIRCAP and the rag top, where they belong- stowed away – and concentrate on what the E cabrio does best- top down cruising.

The interiors are the best in any Mercedes convertible so far. The quality is the best and the rear seats can seat two at good comfort. The Harman Kardon audio system sounds brilliant, but not as much as the wind gushing by. Or the brilliant harmony of all the six cylinders firing to propel you from 0-100kmph in 7.6 seconds. The 3.5litre V6 isn’t the most powerful in the international range, but it gels with the cabrio’s all rounded character. The handling is tight enough to keep you entertained for long on a winding road, such as the one to Amby valley. And if it rains, you can still call on the thick rag top which offers great thermal and noise insulation.

Top Highlights

" In the hottest season of midsummer, the small wind blowing just now suddenly stopped, and the suffocating heat returned."

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The E carbriolet is one of those highly desirable cars that are not very suited to our climate. But drive it top down on a star lit Saturday night or a cold Sunday morning; you will absolutely fall in love.

Rota Alecia Wheels

You can’t get any more JDM than these. The Rota Alecia wheels are as stunning as they are bonkers. They come in Neon Pink and with sizes 15×8 and 16×9 inches in 4×100 PCD. Not everyone can flaunt them but if you do it right, you are gonna stand out big time.

 

TSW MAX

TSW names its wheel after famous race tracks around the world and this one, the Max is named after the motor racing circuit in the city of Sao Paulo in Brazil. The Max comes in silver, machined black and hyper silver and is available in sizes ranging from 18-20 inches with 5 x 120 bolt pattern.

Top Highlights

" In the hottest season of midsummer, the small wind blowing just now suddenly stopped, and the suffocating heat returned."

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Apex RDX Coilovers

Coilover suspension for Fiat Punto

Stop complaining that the tuning scene isn’t fair towards Fiat drivers. This Apex coilover suspension kit is for the Fiat Punto and can take the driving experience to another level. Apex RDX coil-over suspension kits have a unique design in that the ride height is adjusted by moving the shock absorber body into the bracket. It also gives the benefit of a constant pre-load on the spring which maintains the same suspension travel whatever the ride height.

Top Highlights

" In the hottest season of midsummer, the small wind blowing just now suddenly stopped, and the suffocating heat returned."

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MOMO Shield Pedals

Italian style maestros Momo have just released their high grade aluminium pedals to add the finishing touch to any interior. Guess why they are called Shields?

Top Highlights

" In the hottest season of midsummer, the small wind blowing just now suddenly stopped, and the suffocating heat returned."

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Borg Warner EFR 6758 Turbo

The new EFR range from Borg Warner has been causing quite a stir since it was announced and one of the models to be widely available is the 6758, designed for cars wanting to produce between 275bhp and 450bhp. Available with a .63 a/r T28 turbine housing for smaller engines, and a .92 a/r divided T4 turbine for use on rotaries and larger engines, this turbo also features a billet compressor wheel, Gamma-Ti turbine wheel, large internal wastegate and much more. Preliminary reports from the tuning scene suggest these are the quickest spooling turbos for the power capability available.

Top Highlights

" In the hottest season of midsummer, the small wind blowing just now suddenly stopped, and the suffocating heat returned."

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LENSO BSX

If you are looking for a classic mesh wheel for your car, your buck stop here. These retro Lenso BSX wheels comes in white, hyper silver, gold and black and comes with most fitment options and sizes from 15 inch upwards. It might be a while before you see them at your local Lenso supplier, so it is best to order one in advance before your mates do.

Top Highlights

" In the hottest season of midsummer, the small wind blowing just now suddenly stopped, and the suffocating heat returned."

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Ultra Seal Tyre Sealant

If bad roads and punctures are part of your everyday hustle, you have to try Ultra Seal. This tyre sealant when filled into the tyres can seal holes up to 12mm. It also reduces the temperature of the tyre and help extend its life. They are now available across most service stations as an optional extra.

Top Highlights

" In the hottest season of midsummer, the small wind blowing just now suddenly stopped, and the suffocating heat returned."

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Vogtland Lowering Springs

These TUV approved lowering springs from Germany are now available in India. Exclusively marketted by UrbanR Automotive, these springs are available for most Indian cars. Vogtland may not be a familiar name but these are the most comfortable lowering springs we have come across. They are quite reasonably priced from Rs.15800 onwards.

Top Highlights

" In the hottest season of midsummer, the small wind blowing just now suddenly stopped, and the suffocating heat returned."

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Petrobug