In early 1520 CE, Krishnadevaraya commissioned the stone chariot on his return from the successful campaigns of Orissa. Today, the stone chariot is amongst the most iconic heritage structures of India. So much so that when the government of India decided to issue new currency notes in 2017, they used the motif of the stone chariot on the 50 rupee currency note.
Wooden chariots (Rathas in Kannada) are drawn through the main streets of several south Indian temple towns as part of the procession during festivals. This tradition reached its peak during the reign of Vijayanagara, this capital city hosted grand rathotsavas (Chariot festivals) at each of its major temples. The building of stone chariot immortalized this long-cherished tradition of Karnataka. The stone chariot originally carried an idol of Garuda, the Vahana (Vehicle) of Vittala, who is the main presiding deity of this temple.