In India the history of the BAJA can be tracked down to when the Delhi College of Engineering students participated in the Mini Baja in 2002 and this was followed up by other brave attempts by other institutions like VIT, SVNIT and RV College of Engineering who also took part in the subsequent editions of the international event. This interest was just what was needed to set the ball rolling and the Society of Automotive Engineers in India (SAEINDA). With Dr.KC Vora at the helm and Dr Pawan Goenka, as the Chairman of the steering committee launched the BAJA SAEINDIA in 2007. As they ventured into unchartered territory of holding a mega-event of this scale, the Automotive research Association of India (ARAI) and NATRIP came forward to lend a helping hand through an earmarked zone at its upcoming proving grounds – NATRAX, situated at Pithampur, Indore.
While the first event didn’t quite see many colleges participating, it was the first step that laid the foundation for the BAJA SAEINDIA, it also provided the growing crop of engineers from colleges across the country a places to showcase their talent and fuel the growth of the Indian automotive industry. The events has since then moved from strength to strength and the next two events saw a much better response with over 140 colleges participating in the events in 2008 and 2009. In 2010 this number grew to 155 teams registering for the event while 80 were selected to go through to the main event after the preliminary Virtual Baja event. The event in 2011 also saw a similar growth in numbers with 100 teams fighting it out in the main event. In 2012 too this tradition of growth was maintained as event gathers momentum with more and more colleges showing interest in taking part in the event.
For 2013 the event is once again breaking its participation records with 260 colleges submitting their registration. After the Virtual Baja event in Bangalore, 120 teams were selected to do battle in the main event that will be held from February 14 – 19 at Pithampur, Indore. With a healthy growth in interest and participation in the event each year the BAJA SAEINDIA is sure to only strengthen the next generation of automotive engineers and with international manufactures now focusing more and more on emerging markets this couldn’t be better timing.
The group start to the 2009 endurance race Team NSIT in South Africa 2007 The chequered flag drops on the 2007 event Breakdowns are common in the endurance race, A scene from 2009 Junkyard Warriors winning the event in 2009.