For lovers of all things vintage, of emotions besotted by an old world charm, classic vehicles never fail to incite a surge of enthusiasm through their veins. Particularly, as a means of travelling through time and evoking sweet whiffs of nostalgia, vintage vehicles have stood the test of time. Here are 12 of the vintage cars in India that continue to entice enthusiasts long after their imprints have faded in the course of a journey long culminated-
#1 Hindustan Ambassador
Of course, the Ambassador is still on the run today having returned to ‘power’ only recently after a hiatus. But that does not in any manner take any credibility as the ultimate among vintage cars in India. Once a status symbol that has now rallied to be a fond and prized asset for its people, the Hindustan Ambassador was the ruler of India roads from 1954 before waning away to ultimately die out in 2014. As the first car to be built in India post independence, the iconic Ambassador sure has struck a chord among generations of Indian people.
#2 Rolls Royce Phantom II Continental
Among the breed of vintage cars in India that inspire awe by its sheer magnificence and dexterity, the 1935 Rolls Royce Phantom II Continental with its unmatched road presence and aesthetics is one of those classics we would surely want to take a ride on, any day!
#3 Fiat 1100-103
The 1953 ‘Nuova’ Fiat 1100-103 was a stand out masterpiece of its time, that had the credibility of housing a tested engine. A unique build and design that had the front doors open backwards, the Fiat reigned for 7 long years before it lost out ground to the Premier Padmini.
#4 Premier Padmini
Manufactured in India from 1970 to 1998, Premier Padmini rose to become one of the premier vintage cars in the country. With easy functionability and easier handling, the Padmini scored both in convenience and ease. Its round headlights and elegantly designed make sure lend it its classic stature as a car.
#5 1935 Delahaye 135MS
The most valuable of vintage cars in India is the stunning 1935 Delahaye 135MS that is owned by the Jodhpur royal family. A true classic piece in that it is one among only 11 of this kind ever manufactured, the sportier breed of the lot has also been a spectacular racing vehicle.
#6 Standard Herald
The Indian made Standard Herald used to be the sports car that had all young spirits gushing over the luxury vehicle. The design and comfort of this particular model ensured its place of prominence among vintage cars in India.
#7 Jaguar XK150
Jaguar’s XK150 is a sports car that was in production for a mere four years from 1957 to 1961. A radical evolution even for a name as fancied as Jaguar, the XK150 impresses with a power packed ride for a car of that era. Indeed a worthy presence to grace the list of vintage cars in India.
#8 1958 Mercedes Benz 300 SL Roadster
The only 300 SL to have existed in India, this Mercedes Benz model is also one of the most classic among sports cars. The 300 SL also has been one of the priciest cars of its time apart from being also one among the raciest of the lot. The iconic car however had a rather short production span- for almost a decade since 1954 to 1963.
#9 1961 VW Beetle
The 1961 Beetle with its enduring Beetle legacy and endearing appeal to the masses has to be one of the classiest vintage cars in India. Among the highest selling cars of its time, the 1961 model featured push button door handles but otherwise retained most of the original framing of the first Beetle.
#10 Hindustan Contessa
One of the most iconic of all vintage cars in India is the Hindustan Contessa which was also one of the few Indian manufactured luxury cars when it was introduced in the market in 1983. Hindustan Motors continued the production of the Contessa till 2002.
The quintessential Indian muscle car, Contessa was spacious and comfortable but however, was let down by its poor build and service. The choice of Bollywood villains since forever, the Contessa was a striking display of elegance and was one of the fastest vehicles on the horizon, revered and coveted by all and sundry.
#11 Wolseley 8 Saloon
Already a decade old at the time it was launched, the Wolseley 8 Saloon is a classic piece of art that remains one among the coveted vintage cars in India. Inspired by the Morris Eight Series E, the Wolseley however had a charm of its own- with a traditional Wolseley bonnet and grille and an opening wind screen. Even for its time, the Wolseley used to be quite luxuriously equipped.
#12 Ford Ikon
The Ford Ikon is another Indian gem that had been in production from the late 1990s for almost a decade and a half. Initially introduced as the sedan version of the Ford Fiesta hatchback car, the Ikon wowed with its defining bonnet line and cat eyed head lamps.