My First Time was #Fantastico

Due to the unfortunate rise of the Zika epidemic, Tata Motors consciously decided to replace their new car ZICA’s name to another. They held an all India contest and the former TATA ZICA is now renamed to TATA TIAGO. Our test-drive was conducted way before the Zika epidemic and hence the post will have the old name mentioned in various places & pictures.   

There are many things in life we yearn to do but for reasons unknown it won’t happen until it’s meant to be.  It was my first time. I was nervous, excited and all geared up for great. I was embarking a new journey and starting a new family. It all happened because of a zippy car named ZICA.

Tata Motors recently gave birth to a hatchback ZIppy CAr – ZICA. The name was inspired by the looks and performance it delivered. Last weekend they invited 60 Top Indian Bloggers across various Indian states to be a part of their celebration along with Indiblogger at Alila Diwa, South Goa.

Goa is a place where a lot can happen and so it did. Our entire trip was taken care of by Tata Motors, Wizcraft & Indiblogger. The #fantastico weekend was upon me and I was so excited to set off for the journey that I was the first one to check-in at the airport among other Mumbai based bloggers. I was about to meet so many new faces whom I interacted with only virtually and some of them were nonexistent until now.

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So the first of my first time on this trip was that I was travelling alone without known friends or family but little did I know I would be travelling back with a whole new set of friends and family! I was thrilled to meet the bloggers who had flown down from various cities in India. Their vibes were so positive that I didn’t let myself into a shell. Being my first event out of Mumbai, I was not that worried about it as I should have been because I knew Indi Team would have taken care of every minuscule detail like always! I am so glad these guys were drunk years back when they came up with the core idea of Indiblogger and then pulled it through being sober. Their hard work is evident always and they are truly #fantastico 😀
A special mention to Uttpal AKA UK who was always around making sure I am okay, just like my father would.

For all the dummies, I hope you know by now that “My first time” has nothing to do with the three letter words and its more about the four letter word – Zica. Just to be clear, I wouldn’t want to waste your time haha!

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We boarded our GoAir flight around 11ish and were very excited to reach the land of sand, shores and sea-shells. We did take quite a few pictures in the flight to gloat on twitter about our #fantastico moments. On arrival we spotted Wizcraft guys and Naveen from IB eagerly waiting for us. We were asked to hop onto a spacious thirteen seat bus which took us to the majestic Alila Diwa Hotel.

The moment I reached and got down, all I could see is WOW factors about the hotel. It was beautifully architected and had the most remarkable lightings from the passage ways to the rooms and even washrooms. They had stolen the golden touch of a setting sun and embraced it stunningly.

My starving stomach needed to be fed and the lunch buffet was all set. After we registered ourselves we dived right into the food. It was the first time I tasted a Taco and oh my my! Every layer was oozing with variant flavours. Soon after we were allotted our twin sharing bedrooms and how I wish I could just laze around in that cosy bedroom with the most fantastic view! I was paired with Vaisakhi and I couldn’t have got a better roomie. We enjoyed each others company and shared very similar thoughts. We also had some quick photo sessions between each session which was superb!

But we were on a tight agenda set by Tata Motors and Indiblogger and the least we could do is be on time. Since my roomie Vaisakhi and I got our rooms a little late we had to rush to reach the lobby but we made it sort of on time. We sat in the car and were driven to the closest beach Majorda which was super clean as compared to Mumbai beaches. Loved spending some little beachy moments with Dr.Roshan Radhakrishnan, Ankita Singhal and others.

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Everyone’s cameras were out capturing the #fantastico moments whilst some of us played a game of football. Some of the bloggers, namely Prasad, Anindya, Sammya, Sid, Ajay, Naveen (from IB) and others captured beautiful shots throughout the two-day event. This was my first time I ever played football. I always played basketball in school but never entered a game of football with the fear of tripping while tackling and getting injured thereafter. [Not that playing basketball doesn’t cause any injuries but you know football is a little more aggressive] Regardless, it was a fun game.

We were sent back to the hotel around 5:30 to change and go to the open lawn area where there was some fun discussion going on about blogging & networking with Anoop as the host while everyone sipped on some coffee and tea and munched onto some social media cupcake icons! Questions about “Does blogging affect your readers” to how “a lifestyle blog can promote brands which aren’t their niche” were answered.

We were then sorted into teams for the most awaited drive that would take place the next day in the morning. I was picked by Ananth – the founder and CEO of TechDivine and a very successful person. Obviously I didn’t know about it then. Every blogger was still getting to know each other. So Ananth was our Captain who could undoubtedly drive and also had a liscense on him at the event. [Mine was stolen a while back: read more here] The other member of our team was Neilkanth a hardcore tech-guy, who happened to be a Goa resident. We were allotted a diesel car and hence our team was labelled as D2!

This was followed by the “Locker Room Session” which seemed like a big suspense. As the door opened everyone literally gasped with amazement as our eyes saw an entire replica of an actual locker room! Each locker had the bloggers name along with Messi’s jersey with the digit 10, a classy black sipper, a ball pen, a flash drive and a very handy dairy which was then stuffed into a bag. This was Tata Motor’s way to gear us up for great! After we were done clicking pictures with our personalized lockers we all settled down and then came in Cyrus Sahukar, our coach for the locker room session! Cyrus is a very well-known comedian, Vj, Actor and Anchor and his energy was contagious!

Soon after a short welcome by Cyrus we were briefed about the attention seeker of the weekend – ZICA! Delna Awari – Head of Marketing told us how about the fantastico concept behind choosing Lionel Messi as their brand ambassador and how he happily took several retakes just to deliver the perfect “Namaste India.” We were in awe when we heard of Messi’s dedication. Pratap Bose – Head of Designs then took over and talked us through the step by step making of ZICA. This was my first time at an automobile event and I was amazed to see the creative process that goes into designing every minuscule detail of a car. Each sketch was rendered and then digitally touched up using Autodesk Softwares which then was built into 3D models and further constructed into the final product. They finished this project in 36 months which apparently is a very short period. Then things got a little techy but I still managed to grasp the knowledge shared by Anand Kulkarni – Head of Engineering .

So what did I learn in this brief session?

  • The ZICA got global design inputs form Pune, United Kingdom and Italy Studios of Tata Motors.
  • There is a new look to the Tata Motors logo – its 3 dimensional.
  • The car has been designed in an intelligent way which provides 22 utility spaces which are super awesome.
  • ZICA’s air vents can be customized into various colours. [Ladies, here is your cue]
  • ZICA introduces the new Revotron 1.2L petrol engine and debuts the first Revotorq 1.05L diesel engine which is developed in-house!
  • There is a gear shift indicator too for drivers like for whom a manual car is a task.
  • Tata Motors introduced the intelligent Next-Gen ConnectNext Infotainment system, exclusively developed by HARMAN for the best audio experience.

After the briefing session the lockers split and slid open and we had the show stopper posing in all its glory! The sun-burst orange petrol car was sparkling and intriguing and we all got off our seats to experience the feel and comfort. The Tata Motors team had their best brains to guide us through the details and doubts we had about the design to the engines! This session was followed by cocktails, dinner and some lively Karaoke.

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After the actual party we had our own after-party where we played Secret-Santa and exchanged old books that was hosted by the super-energetic BlogwatiG. Some of the night owls then stayed up late chatting and laughing by the infinity pool! It was a task waking up at the crack of dawn next day but I managed. We packed our bags,checked out and headed for breakfast. After which we had to regroup with our team and get set for the drive.
We were briefed by one of the Tata Motors guys about the car functions and all the awesomeness it provides. Then we were flagged off to drive into the beautiful lanes of South Goa filled with churches, factories and coconut trees. Ananth drove, I live tweeted whilst Neilkanth ate some snacks in the backseat! Haha…

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The team captains also received challenges on their WhatsApp groups that every team had to try and complete them but “fortunately” we didn’t receive any messages regarding the same due to network issues and I believe we thoroughly experienced every aspect of driving the ZICA. We were the first team to reach Verna which was the final destination of our GPS mapped route. We fidgeted a lot with all the new features and tested the car to quite an extent. We clicked pictures and filmed some videos as well and enjoyed ourselves!

Ananth was truly the leader of our group as coaxed me to get behind the wheels and experience the ZICA. I was reluctant to drive because I didn’t want to kill them or damage the ZICA since I have been completely out of practice. It was MY FIRST TIME DRIVING on a proper road in an actual non-learners car and it felt so awesome! That moment was #madeofgreat 😀 I zipped through the curvy roads without any hassle as the power-steering was super smooth. The grip of the gear was good too and the smoothness while driving was superb. Ananth also made sure Neil & I always fasten our seat belts each time we sat ahead!

I am not a Car Geek so I don’t know much about the technicalities and hence here is my honest feedback on how I felt driving and being driven in the ZICA.

  • The sun-burst orange colour is something you cannot get your eyes off if you see it zipping and zooming through the streets. The cars are available in a variety of colours.
  • We tested the Multi-Drive Modes and it was pretty easy to switch on the eco mode as it was a touch away. We noticed a glitch in the Eco-Mode; the car would shut down if the speed touched 10! So at every speed breaker our car would suddenly stop. Hence, in lanes we turned the eco-mode off.
  • The car drove over many bumps and potholes but the passengers did not jolt or get shaken at any point.
  • The boot space is pretty good and I also love the thought behind the little pouch to keep all the necessary tools. It ceases all the tingling noises. They also have hooks to hang your shopping bags. [Ladies, this is it]
  • The engine did make a little noise but it wasn’t prominent in our car.
  • The HARMAN music system literally blew our minds which the amazing surround sound it delivered. I also loved the fact that we could connect music through Bluetooth, USD or Pen drive. Also every speaker on the doors were uniquely designed.

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  • The back seats have a lot of leg space since the front seats are curvy.
  • The air condition was not as great as expected. But it kept us cool!
  • The cooling in the glove box was pretty decent and I loved how it can be used for multiple storage. Also the light in it is a bonus!
  • The tail lights have a new look, they look edgy and bold.
  • The 360 degree power steering is fab and we did try that out.
  • I found the door handles a little flimsy!
  • The coffee and bottle holders are the best thing ever as nobody wants liquid spilled all over their car.
  • Love the fact that the seats can be adjusted as per the level one wants it. For short people it’s quite difficult to get full view. Also the seats are cushioned very well and you feel the comfort which is a necessity!
  • About fuel efficiency, we got an average of 14-17 per kilo meter.
  • I did not like the GPS system while the music was on as it would cut of the music every second indicating us to turn in a few kilometers and then again and again.

Concluding Review: I loved the smoothness and ease of accessibility the car offers. The feel of fabric in the interiors is pleasing. For music lovers the HARMAN audio system is ace. For ladies this car has the style and space which are our major priority. Having tendencies of OCD I do love the 22 compartments this car offers to keep everything in place rather than dumping it on the seats.personally wish they had a full on colour customization for the car as I would love my car in a mint colour! We are not aware of the final market quoting of the car as yet but I hope it won’t be more than 4L as it is more of an economical car and can beat it competitors with its pricing. IOverall, the ZICA is surely going to set a benchmark as one zippy hatchback car. Kudos to Tata Motors. Godspeed.

To know more about the beautiful ZICA please click here.

This trip was an all expense trip and I am so very thankful and blessed to be chosen above so many other bloggers! I never thought I could make so many memories and friends in such short time span especially because I am an introvert. Some of us have got so close and now talk daily as though were childhood buddies. I believe I was the youngest blogger among all of them but it was not at all awkward as these guys are all young by heart! Heart-filled thanks to Ankita who took the initiative of making a WhatsApp group to connect everyone and discuss about the event. The entire weekend was #madeofgreat with the most amazing bloggers across India. Thank you Tata Motors for giving us all this much needed break from our routine schedule. Salute to your entire team for everything they did. Also appreciate the drop from the airport for all the women bloggers. It was a hassle-free event! Special thank you to the Indiblogger Team: Anoop, Naveen, Swati, Saurabh & Vineet.

If you want something badly, the universe will make sure it happens. I was longing to travel out of Maharashtra since years and I finally got to step out! 🙂 #HappinessIsThis

-Zainab Attari

34 thoughts on “My First Time was #Fantastico

  1. vishvarsha says:

    And when I kept wondering who would my roommate be…I was the dream catcher girl Zee!! Awesome post for a fantastico weekend! Let us meet again soon!

    Liked by 1 person

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