Delhi’s date with vintage beauties


A visitor poses with a vintage car in New Delhi on Wednesday.— Photo: Meeta Ahlawat

A visitor poses with a vintage car in New Delhi on Wednesday.— Photo: Meeta Ahlawat

Hundred vintage cars preserved for decades by car connoisseurs will feature in a two-day rally that will be flagged off from the historic Red Fort here on February 1.

The “21 Gun Salute International Vintage Car Rally and Autoshow” will pass by historic monuments like the Safdarjung Tomb and Qutub Minar before culminating at Gurgaon on Sunday.

It will see sparkling vintage beauties like a 1929 Rolls Royce, 1933 Hudson and 1929 Buick 50 LX vying for attention. Apart from their appearance, the maintenance of these cars will also be evaluated.

The rally, which will see the participation of two car lovers from the United States and the United Kingdom, is extending support to visually-impaired and spastic children from the National Capital Region.

According to 21 Gun Salute managing director Madan Mohan, the rally will generate funds and donate them to an institute in Uttar Pradesh.

“Thousands of disabled children live on the fringes of society and we often forget these children. The rally will also see 20 vintage cars carrying visually-impaired and spastic children”

Noting that the rally will create awareness about these old beauties among the youth, Mr. Mohan said it was important to make them understand how car lovers have been preserving the cars all these years.

“The uninitiated will get to see the heritage, aura and glamour of these cars. They will be able to understand how these cars have evolved from the 19th Century to the 21st Century. Maintenance of these cars is tough and expensive. Each part has to be imported from the U.K. and the U.S. The owner needs to be an automobile expert.”

Two months ago, Mr. Mohan and his team of car enthusiasts travelled in these heritage cars to evaluate their fitness. But he admits that one or two cars might break down during the long journey. “Last year, two or three vintage cars broke down. Some may break down this year too.”

Thirty cars are coming from Jaipur, Mumbai, Pune, Kolhapur, Hyderabad and Kolkata. The cars from the U.S., the U.K. and other countries will be from the pre-War eras and from the 1960s. Most belong to the Rolls Royce, Ford, Chevrolet, Aston Martin and Bentley stable. As an added attraction, 25 vintage bikes will also run on the road simultaneously.

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