Indian drivers need extra strong horns: Audi

German carmaker Audi makes special horns for its vehicles sold in India where local drivers hoot so much as they fight their way through chaotic traffic, the firm's country director has revealed.

"Obviously for India, the horn is a category in itself," Michael Perschke, director at Audi India, told Monday's Mint newspaper.

"You take a European horn and it will be gone in a week or two. With the amount of honking in Mumbai, we do on a daily basis what an average German does on an annual basis."

Perschke said the horns are specially adapted for driving conditions in India, a booming market where Audi is one of many foreign car brands competing for increasingly wealthy customers.

"The horn is tested differently -- with two continuous weeks only of honking, the setting of the horn is different, with different suppliers," he said.

Perschke also added that so many Audi owners in India have personal chauffeurs that car interiors have been redesigned so that "you can be more in command from the rear seat."

Roads in India are often in poor repair, ranging from pot-holed major highways to dirt tracks in cities, while bullock carts, cows, rickshaws and bicycles often compete with cars and trucks for space.

More than 133,938 people died on India's roads in 2010, according to the National Crime Records Bureau -- a rate of 366 deaths a day.

  • COMMENT: Xenophobia rears its ugly head in Singapore once more 6 hours ago
    COMMENT: Xenophobia rears its ugly head in Singapore once more

    Kirsten Han is a Singaporean blogger, journalist and filmmaker. She is also involved in the We Believe in Second Chances campaign for the abolishment of the death penalty. A social media junkie, she tweets at @kixes. The views expressed are … Continue reading →

  • Driving a $900,000 Porsche 918 Spyder to the future 9 hours ago
    Driving a $900,000 Porsche 918 Spyder to the future

    It’s more than just its inherent speed, or the whooshing noise that fills the cabin like a school choir jamming with James Hetfield. It’s what it represents in an industry full of skeptics. It’s a portal into the future – a time capsule left by some mad scientist born decades too soon. It’s something that shouldn’t exist. And yet it does.

  • 919 reasons to love: Flickr photo of the day 10 hours ago
    919 reasons to love: Flickr photo of the day

    We've brought you the drive video of the $900,000 Porsche 918 Spyder -- an 887-hp hybrid supercar with two electric motors working in harmony with a big 4.6-liter V-8. But how about this? Porsche's hybrid Le Mans racer -- the 919 Hybrid, sent to us by Kevin Leech. Get on board with electrification, folks. Because it's taking over the world.