Kalki 2898 AD: All about Bujji, Prabhas' futuristic car, AI droid vehicle

PUBLISHED DATE : 13/Jun/2024

Kalki 2898 AD: All about Bujji, Prabhas' futuristic car, AI droid vehicle

Kalki 2898 AD is an upcoming Telugu-Hindi sci-fi movie, that is a modern day take on the dystopian Kali Yuga. Written and directed by Nag Ashwin whose Telugu movie Mahanati (2018) boasts of National Film Awards for both the movie and its lead actress Keerthy Suresh, Kalki 2898 AD sees their reunion, albeit with Keerthy Suresh doing only voice acting this time around. 


Keerthy Suresh has voice-overed in all languages for a character named Bujji, which is lead actor Prabhas' sidekick in the Kalki 2898 AD movie. Bujji alias BU-JZ-1 is a crossover between a futuristic car, and an AI droid. Bujji as a car is reminiscent of the famous Batmobile driven by Hollywood actor Christian Bale in Christopher Nolan's Batman movies i.e. The Dark Knight trilogy.


The Tumbler as the Batmobile was famously referred to, was the mastermind of Christopher Nolan himself for his first of the trilogy movies - Batman Begins (2005). The supercar was reimagined on a Lamborghini, built using parts from model cars, boats, planes, and came fitted with a Chevrolet Corvette 5.7-liter V8 engine producing over 500 hp, and a three-speed gearbox. The Tumbler was able to reach top speeds of 250 KMPH and would rise on the massive 44-inch swamper tires when pushed. It also spat fire through the jet engine in the back.


Clockwise L-R: The Tumbler Batmobile envisioned by Christopher Nolan, C-3P0 and R2-D2 from Star Wars, the AI robot on Bujji voiced by Keerthy Suresh, the futuristic Bujji car from Kalki 2898 AD starring Prabhas


Keerthy Suresh's voice as the AI droid, and the sense of humour takes one back to the and the fictional robot characters R2-D2 alias Artoo-Detoo, and C-3PO alias See-Threepio, both of which are part of the Star Wars franchise created by George Lucas.


Just like Warner Bros. and Christopher Nolan, the makers of Kalki 2898 AD have built a real life roadworthy six-tonne concept car, and videos of it being taken for a spin are part of the Kalki 2898 AD's promotional campaign. With a budget of Rs. 4 Cr, Bujji was jointly designed and developed by the Chennai-based Mahindra Research Valley, and the Coimbatore-based Jayem Automotives. 


Anand Mahindra, Chairman of the Mahindra Group not just gave a shout-out to his team in Tamil Nadu for designing the vehicle, he also got to take Bujji out for a spin in Mumbai recently. The billionaire businessman also has stated to TOI,


"Initially I was reluctant because we don’t do one-off vehiles but then I found it to be a really interesting concept and I was excited. I felt, if Hollywood can do it, why can’t we? Nag Ashwin and his team wanted out-of-the-box things such as hubless wheels with twin motor, front arm suspension and single wheel rear axle, independent steering drive, synchronization of vehicle drive systems, swappable battery pack, remote emergency disconnect etc, The vehicle needed a 360-degree camera and AC with automated electronics for the seat and yet it had to look rugged and worn out.”



Nag Ashwin, who has written the story, screenplay besides directing Kalki 2898 AD has added, “In the story, the main character builds Bujji from scrap. So while building the real Bujji, we had to make sure it was a bit rough around the edges, not as gleaming and factory-made as batmobile or R2D2.”



Bujji, designed in Tamil Nadu is touted to be more futuristic than any auto show concept vehicle, since it has been built ground up with two swappable battery packs powering its all-electric engine, as opposed to an ICE engine, has fully customized tyres and brakes, and moves at a top-speed of 45 KMPH. 

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