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Greater NOIDA to Mumbai

Discussion in 'Travelogues & Experiences' started by johnny, Oct 31, 2011.

  1. johnny

    johnny Regolare

    Messages:
    437
    Greater Noida
    Greater Noida
    Grande Punto 1.3
    Hi all,

    About six months back, my son-in-law had relocated to Mumbai. I had gone along with him to share the driving - he has a Scorpio. Now that he is settled down - he had been allotted a flat from the Port trust at Colaba - we had planned to drive to Mumbai. The option to drive was inescapable because we had to take a lot of their stuff with us.

    Before the drive, I had taken the car to Auto Sterling NOIDA to check it out and top up all fluids etc. They did a good job, and even cleaned the car in the bargain. The driver side power window was making a slight noise when operated. This was also done up. Total bill paid was around Rs 380/= for the power window job.

    We (wife & I) started the drive as planned on 21 Oct at 4 AM. The route followed was: DND expressway - Ring road - on to outer Ring road via Rao Tula Ram marg, and then on to the Gurgaon highway. The first pleasant surprise was that the first toll booth was very orderly - the last time it was absolute anarchy! Then on to the Jaipur highway. A fair amount of work seems to have been done and the road was pretty decent. Even the truck traffic was manageable.

    The next task was to catch the Jaipur by-pass. It is a slight LEFT turn from the highway. The catch is that it DOES NOT say 'Jaipur by-pass'. It says "MAHINDRA WORLD CITY". Just to help potential newbies, it is approximately 207 kms from Moti Bagh intersection. This road swings to the right crossing over NH8, and then skirts Jaipur keeping the town well to the left. This is a good road, mostly 6 lane. The last about 7 kms are under repairs, and is not in a very good condition.

    From there you join NH8 towards Ajmer. This is 4 lane all through. Traffic density in the early morning is manageable. Just short of Ajmer you take the diversion to the left towards Nasirabad, (NH-79). This is a great 4 lane road. However, this is the leg on which I lost maximum time!! The trucks seem to have discovered this route and were in full strength. What really screws your happiness is when you have two fully loaded trucks trying to overtake each other, and in the bargain just blocking the road for up to 10 minutes at times! I thought my horn would burn out - not that it made any difference to these guys. This road goes on to Udaipur via Chitaurgarh. Great road but messed up traffic. I estimate that we lost about an hour on this leg (if compered to what speed you can do vs what I could actually do).

    Then came the only bad patch - the Udaipur by-pass. You have to turn left & this goes around the city keeping it to your right. The road condition was bad, and to compound matters, I think that the entire truck population of South Asia was on this road - another 20 odd minutes lost.

    Once you exit the by-pass you hit what I think is the best stretch of road to exhibit the Punto's handling. The road is 4 lane with excellent surface. The terrain is fairly undulating, and plenty of curves - some really serious ones. You can really fly in the Punto at speeds that made me really unsettled in the Scorpio six months back. As somebody stated earlier - the Punto grips the road like Fevicol. After a while you cross over to Gujarat. I was quite disappointed at the marked deterioration in the road surface - still pretty OK. Finally reached Gandhinagar (Ahmedabad) where we planned our night halt with Air Force friends, at 7:45 PM. It was practically non-stop driving with two short halts to fill 10 lits of fuel at each halt. I am chary about the quality of Diesel en-route and do major top ups only at known places. My wife provided moral support & 'in-flight catering' - we normally eat on the move (rolled up parathas with egg/aloo). The first day stats: Distance: 983 kms. Duration: 15 hrs 45 min with a total halt of about 25 minutes. Fuel efficiency 21.9 kpl.

    We spent the night at the new Air Force Mess at Chiloda in Gandhinagar. On 22 Oct, we met up with old friends - I was posted at Gandhinagar from 2007 to 2009. In short 22 Oct was a day of rest. I made sure to top up fuel at Gandhinagar.

    On 23 Oct we once again hit the road early - 3:30 AM. From Chiloda circle there is about 17 kms of 2 lane with the normal truck traffic which drives with high beam. So caution is required. Then you hit the Baroda highway, and you are back to high speed cruising with 4/6 lane. Just short of Baruch you hace a longish bridge which is 2 lane, and this is the major bottle-neck. We were lucky to get out fairly quickly. However, the reciprocal traffic was backed up about 3 Kms!!

    After that the highway to Mumbai is pretty good - 4/6 lanes. However, as you get closer to Mumbai there are about 20 diversions due to highway upgradations. Barring three which are minor bottlenecks, the others are manageable. From the time we entered Mumbai we were C/O MMI GPS - I am totally clueless about Mumbai roads. However, MMI brought us to the house and announced "You have reached your destination". We were welcomed by our son-in-law, daughter and our soon to be three year old grandson. We reached at 1:45 PM. Stats for the day: Distance: 603 kms. Time: 10 hrs 15 mins with about 30 mins halt. Total trip distance: 1586 kms Overall fuel efficiency: 21.3 kpl.

    If we take an average cost of diesel as 45 Rs/lit, the per km cost is approximately Rs 2.11 per km.

    Some observations:-

    1. On the leg from Jaipur to Udaipur there are practically very few eating places. So carrying your own food is a good idea.
    2. From Jaipur till Udaipur I saw only five cars; all with Rajasthan regn!! All the other vehicles were trucks. Makes one wonder if Indians have stopped long drives.
    3. The Ahmedabad Mumbai leg has lots of good eating places.
    4. The Punto seat is just great. With the lumbar cushion that I use, the fatigue was minimal despite the fact that I drove the entire way.

    Currently, I am in the process of exploring SoBo (South Bombay as the locals call it). Parking space availability is the major constraint. If in doubt taking a taxi appears the better option - taxi guys are pretty decent by Delhi standards.

    Fortunately, in the complex there is adequate open parking. However, within two days, the crows had really messed up the car. So, brought Formula 1 car shampoo & Wax, and a car cover. After shampooing and waxing the car, it is now under cover.

    We will be in Mumbai till end Nov. So, I will like to get in touch with local TFIans. Mine is a Medium Grey Punto with Delhi plates & a TFI sticker on the rear bumper.

    Regards
    Johnny

    PS: Though I have a camera, I have not taken any snaps of the route etc. I am a bit lazy in this respect.
    2 people like this.
  2. Thanks! Johnny for the short travelouge and let me welcome you to Mumbai. TFI Mumbai folks we should try to have a small meet to catch up with Johnny.
  3. johnny

    johnny Regolare

    Messages:
    437
    Greater Noida
    Greater Noida
    Grande Punto 1.3
    Thanks Arishi. It will be nice to meet up with you guys.

    Regards
    Johnny
  4. johnny

    johnny Regolare

    Messages:
    437
    Greater Noida
    Greater Noida
    Grande Punto 1.3
    After spending a little over a month at Mumbai, we drove back to Greater NOIDA.

    We started from Mumbai on 30 Nov at 430 AM. The route within Mumbai was: Colaba - Cuffe Parade - Marine Drive - Peddar Rd - Haji Ali - Worli Sea Link - Western Highway. Since it was early morning, there was very little traffic, and we were out of Mumbai in about 40 minutes. Thereafter, the road was pretty OK. The truck traffic was there but it was not unmanageable. When I drove to Mumbai, there were about 20 diversions. This time I found that a lot of work had been done & there were only about 12 diversions. Once they are also done up the road will be really good. The only bottleneck that I was apprehensive about - the bridge near Bharauch, was also manageable. The traffic movement was a bit slow, but OK. The rest of the road, especially the road from Vadodra to Ahmedabad was really good. This stretch has been renamed NE1 (National Expressway 1). We reached Gandhinagar where we spend the night, at 130 PM. Total time taken was about 9 hrs with distance about 590 kms. Fuel economy with AC on full time was 21.3 kpl.

    The next day we started at 345 AM from Gandhinagar. The roads are good, and the only bad stretch - Udaipur by-pass was manageable since it was practically deserted. The going thereafter was good till Jaipur, where we reached by 230 PM. Thereafter, a combination of factors, just made life very difficult. Firstly, this is the time the trucks leave Jaipur for Delhi. So we had hundreds of trucks on the road. Then the Jaipur by-pass was under repairs with numerous diversions. With the volume of truck traffic, these diversions were roadblocks. At times the traffic was stationary for over 30 minutes. Thereafter, the Jaipur to Delhi road was also under extensive repairs. So, it was crawling traffic all the way through. The toll booths at Manesar & Gurgaon were also jammed because of the trucks. I drove practically the entire Gurgaon expressway in second gear. We finally reached Greater NOIDA at 1030 PM, with over 18 hrs at the wheel.

    Looking back, the Jaipur Delhi stretch could have been handled better by doing a night halt at Jaipur, and then leaving for Delhi early morning. At this time truck traffic would have been almost nil, and we would have made better time. This is a point that could be kept in mind by others planning this route. The repairs will take about two years. Thereafter things should be much better.

    Surprisingly, I got a better fuel consumption for the Gandhinagar - Greater NOIDA leg - 22.4 kpl.

    On the whole, the Punto's ergonomics helped a lot in keeping the fatigue within manageable limits.

    Regards
    Johnny
    3 people like this.
  5. speedJet

    speedJet Superiore

    Messages:
    856
    Gurgaon
    Thanks for the update Johny. This is really useful. I had been to Jaipur in September and te journey back took around 7-8 hours. I think it is best to avoid this route on the way back as the roads are very bad and the traffic is a lot
  6. varoon9999

    varoon9999 Superiore

    Messages:
    769
    New Delhi,HP 48
    New Delhi,HP 48
    Grande Punto 1.3
    nicely written johnny sir.welcome back.its been long to see you here on board.

    now i have to plan a road trip to mumbai soon.

    OT:i had driven some 900 kms in one single day this nov25th.my parents and me had gone to ajmer shariff-pushkar-jaipur-delhi.roads from delhi to jaipur is really cumbersome.i could see only lorries all around the highway both during day and night.just handfull of cars,jaipur to ajmer highway is really terrific and ruhaani road to drive.i remember at night 12'o clock we were stuck at Dharuweda(manesar) for around 2 hrs.we had put engine off and napped for a while.
    goosh so many toll booths and paid some 1500/ in one single day only for toll tax.

    @ speedjet bro go through this thread for upcoming meet
    http://www.teamfiat.co.in/teamfiat-meet/2611-any-teamfiat-meet-delhi-20.html
  7. nkapoor777

    nkapoor777 Regolare

    Messages:
    467
    New Delhi
    Welcome back to this part of the world sir! Seems like you have taken quite a liking to the Delhi-Mumbai drive. Twice over in what, something like six months? Lets plan to meet up sometime.
  8. johnny

    johnny Regolare

    Messages:
    437
    Greater Noida
    Greater Noida
    Grande Punto 1.3
    @Speedjet,

    I do not know if you can totally avoid the Jaipur - Delhi leg. If you halt overnight & plan to start from Jaipur early morning, it will be manageable. The truckers will be going the other way. The road itself is not too bad; in fact it is quite OK.

    @Varoon,

    Except for the Delhi-Jaipur leg, it is a drive you will really enjoy. Being a 'responsible' "seniorish citizen" I have set my speed alarm for 125 kmph. However, I got the alarm a number of times, especially on the Ahmedabad - Vadorara stretch. You will probably cross 200. But, believe me, it is a fun drive. So, go for it. Do not forget to post your travelouge thereafter.

    @Nitin,

    Well, it is a fun drive, and my daughter & grandson happen to be in Mumbai. So, that explains the 'incentive'. I hope you are coming to Neemrana for the meet on 18 Dec. Please do bring your family along. We would love to meet them. We can also plan to meet sometime in Delhi/NOIDA/GNOIDA. We will be here till around 20 Dec.

    Regards
    Johnny
  9. johnny

    johnny Regolare

    Messages:
    437
    Greater Noida
    Greater Noida
    Grande Punto 1.3
    Latest update on this route:

    I started from Greater NOIDA on 12 Apr, and did this route in a relaxed manner over three days. We reached Mumbai on 14 April. The leg wise details are as follows:-

    First leg: Greater NOIDA to Nasirabad: We started at 5 AM. The road up till Jaipur was OK - better than what it was during the last trip. However, the truck traffic was really crazy. Things improved once you hit the Jaipur by-pass. The road was good all the way to Nasirabad, which is a small town on the Ajmer bypass. It is a Cantonment, and we stayed in an Army mess for the night.

    Second leg: Nasirabad to Gandhinagar:
    We started at 430 AM, and the route via Chitaurgarh was very good. Also the traffic density in the early morning was quite low. The Udaipur by-pass still remains a choke point. The initial part of the route from Udaipur to Gandhinagar has lots of nice undulating curves. So, used this stretch to check out the car handling with increased GC. In my opinion, the handling remains unchanged. The car handled very well. Once you enter Gujarat, the road quality comes down a bit. But the biggest problem is that the highway runs through a number of small towns. Practically all these towns have made really nasty speed breakers. Some of them are not marked too well. So, if you are doing this route at night, these speed breakers can take you by surprise. If you hit these speed breakers at high speed, suspension damage is very likely. We spend the night at the Air Force mess in Gandhinagar

    Third Leg: Gandhinagar to Mumbai: We set out early (0430 AM). Except for the bottleneck at the Baruch bridge, the rest of the road is very good. One overbridge is under construction still - the diversion is good. All other overbridges have been completed, and you can really enjoy this leg. We reached Colaba by 2 PM.

    Regards
    Johnny
    5 people like this.
  10. Amazing @Johnny sir...
    Your travelouge has worked as an inspiration and confirmation to my intention of doing a Delhi Mumbai road trip.
    Have started collecting details myself thru threadhttp://www.teamfiat.co.in/street-travel-experience/6929-query-delhi-mumbai.html
    Looking forward for your guiding tips as well...

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