Are our youths equipped to handle supercars?

Are our youths equipped to handle supercars?

After Mohammed Nalapad’s accident, we must rethink whether such cars are safe on our roads 

Two recent accidents in the city involving super luxury cars bring back the question of whether cities like Bengaluru are ready for supercars.

In the first instance, there is a video of a Lamborghini sports car crashing into a police kiosk. In the second instance, Mohammed Nalapad, son of Shantinagar Congress MLA NA Haris, is alleged to have rammed a Bentley luxury car into a motorcycle, an autorickshaw and a car.

While the cause of the two accidents and who caused them is left to the police to investigate, these incidents and others around the country raise an important question: Are our youngsters trained enough to drive these fast and expensive cars?

Bentley sells four models in India — the Continental, Bentayga, Mulsanne and Flying Spur — and can cost over Rs 5 crore (ex-showroom) for certain models. The new Lamborghini Huracan Evo RWD costs Rs 3.22 crore (ex-showroom). Other luxury and super luxury cars are similarly priced.

The point is that these cars produce nothing less than 500 horsepower and have a similar torque figure. They accelerate very quickly, and the driver needs to be skilled in handling them. While it is very easy to step on the throttle and get up to speed in no time, understanding how to slow down and brake are also techniques that have to be mastered.

Manufacturers often have sessions for customers to help them drive their new machines better and safely. Manufacturers also organise track days (at a proper racetrack) to help customers get used to supercars and get the maximum thrill out of their purchase.

Watching clips of these supercars touching insane speeds is a treat. However, the sad fact in India is that roads that suit such a trip are scarce.

That is another challenge the owner will have to worry about while driving a supercar in crowded Indian cities.If, for example, when a sports car reaches a poorly designed speed breaker, it will be a nightmare for the driver to get the car across because many of these cars have low ground clearance.

The unscientific speed breaker could very well damage the underside of the car. It is probably for this reason that Lamborghini sells good volumes of its Urus sports utility vehicle (which has a high ground clearance) as compared to its other models.

Driving a supercar in the city can also have unusual problems. Take one of these cars out somewhere in the Central Business District in the city and there will be dozens trying to photograph and take videos of the car.

This crowding is never good in a place like Bengaluru, which is terribly congested already. Additionally, there might be other motorists who want to shoot a video while in motion. There is a tendency to get close to the supercars and this is a question of safety. Lamborghini or Porsche fans taking photos is not the fault of the cars’ owner, but the point is that there are safety concerns.

Whether it’s the driver, other motorists or road conditions at fault, the fact is that supercars do not appear to be the best fit for our roads. An owner will have to concentrate extra hard while driving one around.

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