Development Aid into Test and Evaluation of Vehicle Handling | Aguascalientes Mexico

The Americas including North, South and Central America are  on our truck-the-world list. Senior Expert Service SES is a nonprofit foundation of the German Economy for International Cooperation and cooperates with the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development. CAFA is one of the biggest Mexican construction companies building Panama channel in those days and located in Auguascalientes, centre of Mexican Automotive industry.

Ten years ago CAFA built Aguascalientes Ovalo, a race track for US American NASCAR series.

Agauscalientes Ovalo Plan
Aguascalientes Proving Ground Overview Including Ovalo Race Track
View over Augascalientes Ovalo
View over Augascalientes Ovalo

Since the track was abandoned because of security concerns, CAFA recently designed a project converting the track into a professional vehicle proving and testing ground for Mexican automotive industry. Mexican Ministry for Technology and Development supported the project and asked SES for testing and evaluation expertise.

As a lecturer at Berlin Technical University, see https://www.kfz.tu-berlin.de/menue/lehrangebot/fahrversuche_im_automobilbau/ and Springer author on Automotive Testing and Evaluation science books SES asked me to consult and to train CAFA on automotive testing standards, technology, data aquision and analysis.

Smart VEclie Handliing - Test und Evaluation in der Fahrzeugtechnik by Wolf D Käppler, Springer 2015
Wolf D Käppler: Smart Vehicle Handling – Test und Evaluation in der Fahrzeugtechnik, ISBN 978-3-662-464-168 | Springer 2015

During work at CAFA headquarters in Aguascalientes I went traveling to several Colonial cities North of Mexico City. After finalizing the consulting contract we drove around Yucatan peninsula by car. 8.000 km were covered overlanding Mexico.

CAFA CONSULTING

As a start of 3 weeks consulting several overviews over ISO vehicle handling test standards, procedures and testing technology were presented. CAFA personnel was educated and trained on vehicle dynamics and real time data measurement, sensor technology and data analysis. Training on the job including the organization and realization of testing execution and evaluation of results was given including safety and security aspects.

Meeting at CAFA with Boss Carlos, Project Manager Fernando and Carlos plus a Visitor | Aguascaleintes
Meeting at CAFA with Boss Carlos, Project Manager Fernando and Carlos plus Visitor | Aguascalientes

In several meetings test standard requirements in terms of surface, slope, track length and curve radii were analysed, compared and selected from hundreds of tests.

Selected ISO Vehicle Handling Test Standards
Example of Selected ISO Vehicle Handling Test Standards

Test rides according to selected ISO test standards were executed in order to make sure that required testing speeds, 100 km/h, e.g.,  were attained by standard vehicles and that braking distances were safe. Furthermore, safety zones were evaluated.

ISO Steady State Curve Driving Test at Ovalo
Personal ISO Steady State Curve Driving Test at Ovalo

Suitable ISO test standards were selected and documented and time and business plans including concept, personnel and finance for what CAFA called “Vehicle Test and Design Centre” were developed.

Project Pan
CAFA Vehicle Test and Design Cente” Project Business Pan

AUGUASCALIENTES

…is a historic Spanish Colonial city with 700.000 inhabitants at an altitude of 1.800 m. Restored Colonial buildings are located around  central Plaza Patria. Adjoining is a nice but small historic center with a limited number of pubs.

Quality Inn Hotel**** at Plaza for 3 Weeks | Aguascalientes
Quality Inn Hotel**** at Plaza Patria for 3 Weeks | Aguascalientes
Government and Municipalt Palace next to Hotel | Aguascalentes
Government and Municipalt Palace next to Hotel…
...with Impressive Inside...
…with Impressive Inside Loggias…
Cathedral de Nuestar Senora left of Hotel
…Cathedral de Nuestra Senora left of Hotel…
...Selling Veggies at Side Entrance...
…Selling Veggies at Side Entrance…
Theatro Morelo next to Hotel
…Theatro Morelo next to Hotel…
...with Modern Art...
…with Modern Art…
...Jacaranda...
…Jacaranda…
...Dancing and Music each Night at Plaza...
…Dancing and Music each Night at Plaza Patria…
...Hair Dressing at Plaza Patria...
…Hair Dressing at Plaza Patria…
…Concerts…
...with Pubs and Music at the Bar Lie Closeby......
…with Pubs and Music at the Bar Mile……
...no Tesla Cars but Power Staitons | Aguascalientes
…no Tesla Cars but Power Stations | Aguascalientes
...Public Transport is Cheap in Aguascalientes
…Public Transport is Cheap in Aguascalientes…
...and Autobuses are Comfortable and Basic between Cities
…Autobuses are Comfortable and Basic Transportation between Cities…
...Final Goodbye Dinner at Maya Restaurant with Native Maya Food
…Goodbye Dinner at Rincon Maya Restaurant with fine Native Maya Food, Recommended…
...at Plaza ...
…next to Templo del Senor del Encino at Jardin del Encino…
...with Wedding Ceremony | Aguascalientes
…with Wedding Ceremony | Aguascalientes

ZACATECAS and GUADALUPE

These are famous Colonial cities 600 km North of Auguascalientes at an Altitude around 2.000 m.

Bus Trip to ... 600 km North of Aguascalientes
Bus Trip Alignng Cactus at 2000 m Altitude to Zacatecas 600 km North of Aguascalientes
My Fiesta Inn Hotel**** Run by CAFA Owners | Zacatecas
Colonial City Hall | Zacatecas
Colonial City Hall and Main Road… | Zacatecas
...with Great Houses Colonial Style...
…with Houses Colonial Style…
...Cerro de la Buffa Aquedukt |Zcatecas
…El Cubo Aquedukt…
...and Quinta Real Hotel...
…and Quinta Real Hotel…
...Preparing for Wedding Party in the Former Bullfighting Arena | Zacatecas
…Preparing for Wedding Party in the Former Bullfighting Arena | Zacatecas
Museo Moderno Francisco Coronel | Zacatecas
Iglesia Santo Domingo and Museo Moderno Francisco Coronel | Zacatecas
Theatro Fernando Calderon...
Theatro Fernando Calderon…
Museo of Masks Rafael Coronel | Zacatecas
…Museo of Masks Rafael Coronel…
...Mezcala Style...
…Mezcala Style…
…Pre-Hispanic Style…
...Spanish Colonial Style...
…Spanish Colonial Style…
...and Ceremonial Elephant...
…and Ceremonial Elephant |Zacatecas
Mina El Eden Silver Mine | Zacatecas
Mina El Eden Silver Mine Entrance | Zacatecas
MExican Hero ...
Mexican Hero Pancho Villa at Cerro de la Bufa…
Zacatecas and Cathedral from Above
…Watching Zacatecas and Cathedral from Above
Guadalupe Cathedral...
Convento de Guadalupe… | Guadalupe
...Next to Guadelupe Museo of Art and Coaches...
…next to Guadelupe Museo of Art with  Coaches of the Cardinal…
...and a Cadillac | Guadelupe
…and a Cadillac | Guadalupe

GUANAJUATO

… is another rich and beautiful Colonial city North of Mexico City and full of life, sightseeings and tourists, and worth to visit.

Theatro Jurarez | Guanajuato
Art Nouveau Theatro Jurarez | Guanajuato
...Stage...
…Stage…
...Seatings...
…Seatings…
...Ceiling...
…Ceiling…
...Foyer...
…Foyer | Guanajuato
Templo Valenciana
Templo Valenciana | Guanajuato
Basilica Nuestra Senora
Basilica Nuestra Senora | Guanajuato
Calle del BEso
Callejon del Beso – Ally of the Kiss | Guanajuato
Fort
Alhondiga de Granaditas, Former Granary but Regional Museum Today | Guanajuato
Mercado Eiffel
Mercado Eiffel…
...inside still Market
…still a Market | Guanajuato
After Sunday Concert in El Parque del Jardin
After Sunday Concert in El Parque del Jardin | Guanajuato
Start of the Night Walk around Old Town
Start of the Night Walk for Tourists around Old Town…
Tourists Listenig to the Guide
…Tourists Listening to the Guide…
Cervantes Museum...
…Cervantes Museum…
...and Teatro Cervantes
…and Teatro Cervantes | Guanajuato
House and Museum of Diego Rivera...
House and Museum of Diego Rivera… | Guanajuato
...his Parents Bed...
…his Parent’s Bed…
...and one of his Famous Wall Pinting
…and one of his Famous Wall Paintings Today in Mexico City
Supreme Court of 1st Republic of Mexico...
Supreme Court of 1st Republic of Mexico | Guanajuato
Supreme Court Assembly Hall...
Supreme Court Assembly Hall…
House where Alexander von Humbodt Stayed 1873
…next to House of Alexander von Humbodt…
...in1803
…in1803 | Guanajuato

SAN MIGUEL DE ALLENDE

…is another Colonial City next to Guanajuato and quite touristic, too, but smaller, UNESCO World Heritage and worth to visit.

My Casa Oratorio**** Hotel in the Centre | San Migul
My Casa Oratorio**** Hotel in the Centre | San Miguel
...Plaza Principal around the Corner...
Plaza Principal around the Corner with La Parroquia and…
...Templo
…Templo de San Rafael…
...Theatre...
…Theatro Angela Peralta built early 20th Century…
...Nightlife...
…Nightlife at Umaran Main Street…
...Hat Sellers...
…Hat Sellers…
...San...
…San Francisco…
...Main portal of the Nuestra Señora de la Salud Church...
…Main portal of the Nuestra Señora de la Salud Church…
...Museum...
…”Guardian” at Centro Cultural Ignacio Ramirez next to Museuo Historico Casa de Allende Entrance…
...Monumantal Gates...
…Monumental Gate at the House of the Counts of the Canal…
....
….Built in 18th Century and currently Owned by Banamex Bank…
...Nice Vews over the City...
…Views over the City and 2-Floor-Buildings…
...Public Transport...
…Public Transport uphill…
...Music Band..
…Music Band…
The Old Guitar Playing for a Dime | San Miguel
…and Old Guitar Playing for a Dime at Restoran Los Milagros | San Miguel

MERIDA

After completion of CAFA consulting our trip around Yucatan Peninsula started in Merida, political and economical centre of Yucatan with historic Colonial centre around PLaza Grande. We did a 3-week-tour counter-clockwise around the peninsula by car and stayed in many hotels close to the sea.

Flight Auguacalientes - Merida over Mexico City
Flight Auguacalientes – Merida over Mexico City
...Merida University...
…Merida University…
..with its Teatro Uiversitario Felipe Carillo Puerte...
..with its Teatro Uiversitario Felipe Carillo Puerte…
...and Teatro Daniel Avala...
…and Teatro Daniel Avala…
...and this Art Nouveau Teatro ...
…and Art Nouveau Teatro Armando Manzanero…
...Roman Catholic Cathedral...
…Roman Catholic Cathedral de Merida at Plaza Grande…
...Camara de Commercio...
…and Camara de Comercio…
...Policia at Centro Cultural Olipio...
…and Policia at Centro Cultural Olimpio…
...and Museo Casa Montejo about Wealthy Culture of those Days...
…and Museo Casa Montejo with Wealth and Culture of those Days on Display…
,,,but there is Real Life at Mercado San Benito…
...and Chaya Maya Restoran...
…and at Chaya Maya Restoran at Parque Santa Lucia, Major Barmile at Night…
...with Friendly Service in Maya Dress..
…with Friendly Service in Maya Dress…
...and Fine Cocktails And Maya Food | Merida
…and Fine Cocktails And Maya Food | Merida

CELESTUN SISAL

..yes, correct, that is where Sisal comes from, made from Agave fiber for clothing, hats, carpets, ropes…

First stop was at ... Hotel Run by Unfriendly German Expats at the Beach, please note the Fence |
First Stop at Castillito Kin-Nah Hotel Run by Unfriendly German Expats, note the Fence | Celestun
...but Tasty Wine instead of Corona Beer at the Beach...
…Tasty Wine instead of Corona Beer at Celestun Beach…
...Boat Trip through Mangrove Forest...
…Boat Trip through Mangrove Forest of Reserva de la Biosfera Ria Celestun…
...Watching Remaining Flamingos...
…Watching Few Flamingos…
...and Tourists | Campeche
…and Tourists | Celestun

UXMAL

Uxmal is an ancient Maya city of the classical period in today’s Mexico around 9th century, UNESCO World Heritage. It is considered one of the most important archaeological sites of Maya culture, along with Palenque, Chichén, and Calakmul in Mexico.

View over the Archaelogical Site with Nunnery...
View over the Archaeological Site of Uxmal with Nunnery and…
Pyramid of the Magician | Uxmal
…Pyramid of the Magician | Uxmal
...Ball Playground...
Ball Game Playground…
...and Leguan | Uxmal
…and Iguana | Uxmal

CAMPECHE

…was next stop at Yucatan West Coast, another attractive Colonial city with a lot of tourists and a big Plaza, quite nice.

Catedral de Nuestra Señora de la Purísima Concepción at Independnce Square...
Catedral de Nuestra Señora de la Purísima Concepción at Independence Square…
...and Typical Street with 2-Floor-Houses in the Centre | Campeche
…and Typical Street with 2-Floor-Houses in the Centre | Campeche

CIUDAD DEL CARMEN

The route from Campeche to Vilahermosa in Tabasco state touches boring Ciudad del Carmen but follows the Caribbean beach most of the time. Thanks to many bridges it crosses several islands off shore and passes lagunes for almost 400 km.

We followed Route 180 South Aligning the Beach Populated by Hundreds of Pelicanes
Route 180 South Aligning the Beach Populated by Hundreds of Pelicanes
Fresh Fish at the Beach | Ciudad del Carmen
Fresh Fish at the Beach | Ciudad del Carmen

VILAHERMOSA

…is the Capital of Tabasco state and quite industrial but comes with one of the most important archaeological sites in Mexico.

Olmeca Plaza**** Hotel | Vilahermosa
Olmeca Plaza**** Hotel | Vilahermosa
...Municipality at Night...
…Municipality and Empty Plaza at Night…
...but Leopards in the Zoo...
…but Jaguars in the Parque-Museo…
...and Olmec ... in the ...Park | Vilahermosa
…and lots of Olmeca Statues, among them this Colossal Olmeca Head in Open-Air Parque-Museo de la Venta, one of the most Important Archaeological Sites in Mexico | Vilahermosa

PALENQUE

…a former Maya state blooming in 7th century AC in today’s Chiapa state close to Guatemala is a must-see  archaeological site and most beautiful in the middle of the jungle, UNESCO World Heritage.

Outside WIndow View of our Paraiso Inn*** | Palenque
Outside WIndow View of our Paraiso Inn*** | Palenque
...Banana Blooming...
…Banana Blossom | Palenque
...Famous .... in the Jungle...
Famous Temple of Inscription in the Jungle…
...wit Palace and Observation Tower next...
…wit Palace and Observation Tower next…
...and Teple of Sun...
…and Temple of Sun | Palenque

PUERTO AVENTURAS & TULUM

On our route back North we aligned Belize border and joined West Coast. Puerto Aventuras is a retort city for the Elderly, you should have money and own a boat.  This was our base for a visit of Tulum site.

LM by Inmense | Puerto Aventuras
LM by Inmense**** with Artificial Port and Real Dolphins Included…
...at the only Beach: Acccess for Hotel Guests only
…Beach Acccess for Hotel Guests only | Puerto Aventuras
Tulum Temple at the Sea...
Tulum is a Maya City Facing the Caribbean Sea and its Harbour, Established 13th Century
...with Masses of Tourists, small and big | Tulum
…with Masses of Tourists, Small and Big, Young and Old | Tulum

PLAYA DEL CARMEN

On our way to Chichen Itza we stayed in lively and Mallorca-like Playa del Carmen – not quite worth it although tourists here do not own boats nor houses and are much younger.

Playa del Carmen is an Extreme Tourist City with a nice beach and Speed Boats to ... | Playa del Carmen
Playa del Carmen is an Extreme Tourist City with a Nice Accessible Beach and Speed Boats to Cozumel Island…
...but Good for Dinner | Playa del Carmen
…and Good for Shopping and Dinner | Playa del Carmen

CHICHEN ITZA

…was one of the largest Maya cities between 8th and 12th centuries, UNESCO Wold Heritage today and is one of the most important archeological monuments in Mexico today.

Romantic ...Hotel in the Jungle | Chichen Itza
Romantic Hotel Oka’an**** with outside Rest Beds in the Jungle | Chichen Itza
El Castillo | Chichen Itza
El Castillo | Chichen Itza
...again Ball Game Playground...
…again Ball Game Playground…
…and too many Tourists | Chichen Itza

IZAMAL

…was passed on our way back to Merida airport, a Maya as well as Colonial city, founded between 7th and 2nd century BC and abandoned with the rise of Chichen Itza around 10th century AD.

Izamal...
No Tourists at Great Pyramid of Maya Sun God Kinich Kak Moo Founded BC and left 10th Century | Izamal
Arcada principal del Atrium del Convento Franciscano 16th Century | Izamal
Arcada Principal del Atrium del Convento Franciscano 16th Century | Izamal
...Waiting for Few Tourists in Izamal
Tourists are quite Rare in Izamal

MERIDA

We returned back to Merida for a final Good Bye to Mexico and  Yucatan and flew home…

...and Fresh Fish at Parque Santa Lucia...
…Final Fresh Fish at Parque Santa Lucia…
GOOD BYE MERIDA
GOOD BYE MERIDA & MEXICO