Another car that occupies pride of place in the museum is the 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air. This four-door sedan has been done up in bright red, typical of Chevy. The paint job is complemented by a bucketful of gleaming chrome. The upholstery, done up in matching the red leather, as well as the whole interior, in general, has a high degree of finish. Given a choice, I am sure many enthusiasts would like to own this Chevrolet instead of the new ones. There are two other
Chevrolets in the museum, both Impalas. While the 1960 Impala is pretty well known in India, the 1962 Impala SS is the only hardtop two-door SS in India.
The museum is home to two very special Cadillacs. The 1952 Cadillac Coupe de Ville – also known as Series 62 – was the company’s Golden Anniversary model and sported a golden logo. The Coupe de Ville started a new trend that had through-the-bumper dual exhaust pipes. This model also incorporated new features that included dual range dramatic drive, power steering and self-winding clock. You can call the other Cadillac, ‘Pink Cadillac’. This is the 1959 Cadillac Sedan de Ville and was previously owned by HH Maharaja Gaj Singh of Jodhpur, Rajasthan. The model typifies a late 1950s design and features the tallest tail fins ever manufactured; its graceful, fluid movement almost transforms it into a land yacht. The flamboyant design of those times reached its zenith with this car, sporting a host of distinctive designs that made Cadillac so special. In 1959, this car had the automatic transmission, power steering, power windows, brakes and locking. It also had the added comfort of an air-conditioner, and a radio and cassette player.
Buicks and Dodges also have a prominent presence. There are two 1935-36 Buick Series 90 Model 90L and a 1949 Buick Super Eight, a Series 50, Model 51. The four Dodge cars include a
1937 Convertible, a very luxurious 1938 Dodge, a seven-passenger Limousine, a 1943 Dodge Weapon carrier straight out WWII and a 1947 Dodge Custom.
Ford also has a presence in the museum. There is a 1941 Ford Super Deluxe Stationwagon, also fondly called Woody. The other Ford is the universal favorite, a 1943 Jeep. It is surprising how many people identify with the Jeep.
The European connection in the museum includes a couple of 1947 Austin A40s, a Devon, a 1952 Hillman Minx, a 1967 Mercedes-Benz 200 and a 1969 Haflinger 700 A.P. The A40 may seem a rather simple car but it has its own importance and was hugely successful in England. The most interesting among these European cars is the Haflinger. Made in Austria, this 700cc two-stroke vehicle has a four-wheel drive and high ground clearance, and it was because of these characteristics that this vehicle, at one point in time, came to be used by as many as eighteen different armies around the world.