India: Man Builds Coronavirus-Shaped Car to Spread Awareness

Indian inventor revs up corona car to drive home lockdown message
NOAH SEELAM/AFP

A carmaker in India has created a coronavirus-shaped car to raise public awareness about preventing infections. The custom-made automobile was unveiled on Wednesday in Hyderabad, as reported by the Indo-Asian News Service (IANS).

“To bring awareness about coronavirus and to encourage people to stay home, I’ve made the coronavirus car. I want to give a clear message to people not to come out of their house and stay safe,” K. Sudhakar, the car’s designer, said.

The single-seater car has a 100 cubic centimeter engine, six wheels, and a carbon-fiber body. “It took us ten days to build this car which can touch [reach] a maximum speed of 40 kilometers per hour [25 miles per hour],” Sudhakar said.

The car will hit the roads of Hyderabad to drive home awareness about the danger of the Chinese coronavirus. Sudhakar plans to later donate the car to Hyderabad police so that they may further educate the city about the coronavirus.

In the past, the local public figure has built other vehicles to promote diverse social messages. He engineered a condom bike to support AIDS awareness, a cigarette bike for a “stop smoking” campaign, a helmet car to highlight road safety, and a cage car to spread the message not to cage birds.

“We have always made cars to give back to the society in our own way, for various occasions and causes,” said Sudhakar, who runs a quirky museum in Hyderabad called Sudha Cars, where the coronavirus car was unveiled on Wednesday.

Known locally for designing whimsical cars in surprising shapes and forms, Sudhakar displays the creations at his gallery. The Hyderabad business owner uses junk automobile parts for his models. Sudhakar holds the Guinness World Record for designing the largest tricycle in the world.

Hyderabad is a major center for the technology industry in India. It is the capital and largest city of southern India’s Telangana state, making Hyderabad the major urban center for all of south-central interior India.

On March 25, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi placed India under a 21-day lockdown to curb the spread of the Chinese coronavirus. With a population of 1.3 billion people, India’s quarantine is reportedly the world’s largest.

At press time on Thursday, India had 6,653 infections and 199 deaths from the Chinese coronavirus.

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