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Old 26th July 2016, 16:39   #1
h14
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Default Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me

How many times have we heard people say that you don't get a FIAT and rather a FIAT buys you and its just happening over and over again in my life.

This time its a 1985 Premier Padmini (Deluxe BE).

Almost 6 months back (June-July2014), during a casual lunch with friends, we get a call stating that a good Padmini is up for grabs. The caller was a common friend who's a scientist at Kalpakkam and the car in question was being owned by a senior scientist who is all set to retire and move back to North India.

Since he wasn't decided on where he's going to settle down, he had decided to give away the car to someone who could take good care and wasn't really bothered on the money part.

After the call, we guys were all set to go over and have a look at the car, but since our friend was not available, had to drop the plan and eventually we lost interest and forgot about this car completely.

Again after a month, we get the call and I as was shuttling between Chennai and Coimbatore on personal reasons couldn't plan to see the car. Hence a couple of friends visited the place without me. I got a pic of the engine bay and that was good enough to tell how well the car has been looked after.

These were the first pictures which I saw over WhatsApp:

Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-img20141212wa0035.jpg

Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-img20141212wa0036.jpg

My friends said the owner was a wonderful person and he seemed to be in complete love with the car. Almost everything in the car was original he said.

Even at this point I never was serious on getting the car for me. I wanted it to go to good hands; someone who can take care of it and was frantically texting people and almost all of them had other commitments and weren't ready to accommodate the PP at that time.

Another month passed and no decision was made and we were back to our routine life forgetting the Padmini. We get a note again, and it was a bit scary as the owner wanted to dispose off asap and if we don't get it he will give it away to his mech. We were sorry to hear that as we didn't want it to go to a mech who might end up selling or scrapping the car. Can't blame him, he needs to make a living too!

So, we leave work a little early and set forth to Kalpakkam, reached late evening and met the owner. He opened the garage and there she stood, spotlessly clean!

This is how I saw her first time in flesh:

Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-img_20140821_200829.jpg

He cranked her up and it started without a fuss and took it for a small test drive within the township.

Engine was idling on a higher rpm, minor rattles here and there and the clutch was on the edge and brakes felt lifeless. Nevertheless, the body line was clean, paint was fresh even after 2 yrs and the interiors were from the factory! Yeah, the factory fitted upholstery was still doing duty.

Came back to his house and he showed all the papers. He was the second owner, the previous being a family friend of his and hence can technically be called single owner.

Re-registered from central India to TN in early 90's and had clocked 1.2L kms. The odo had 10k and he said he drove close to 10k without the speedo working. All documents were intact and the insurance papers set a shock through me. It was a comprehensive policy with 65% NCB!

By this time, the two pal's of mine incepted me on buying this. The owner was more than happy on knowing that I already own 2 other 1100's and he too made up his mind that I'll be taking the car.

I was lost for words as I was already low on funds and this could only set me back further and couldn't react to anything and by this time the other three closed the deal. Then was the next surprize when the owner refused to take any money! All he wanted from me was to take good care of the car.

We couldn't agree to that and so somehow managed to convince him for an amount and after much deliberation he accepted and we shook hands and left the place with these thoughts yet to sink in to me.

The agreement was that my friend will pick up the car and keep in his place and I'll collect it after a month. The following day, the owner signed all papers to my name and handed over the car to my friend. The amount was then handed over the next day as agreed. The car was then drove to Chennai and parked safely. While all this was happening, I was at Coimbatore watching these updates on WhatsApp during the Pooja holidays.

Clicked at friend's Apartment, all set for the pooja:

Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-img20141002wa0098.jpg

The car was covered up and parked and I picked it up after some 2 weeks. The reason on the delay was I didn't want to drive before the paper work was completed and also to accumulate some funds to do the works.

Took it out, changed the fluids and she was fine. Needed immediate attention to brakes, suspension and clutch which I was planning to do after a week's time and I'll once again be troubling bhp'ian Dussey for these

Sincere thanks are due to our Scientist friend Azhagu in Kalpakkam for getting the deal through, for Dhans for having taken all the trouble to see the car first and then accompany me again to test drive and then going there again and picking it up for me alongside with Bharath. Thanks to Naveen who was happy to accommodate the PP in his parking for months together and to bhp'ian teky who also had a major role in incepting my mind on buying this car

All I can say is thanks to FIAT for giving me such wonderful friends who go all out to help each other without expecting anything in return.

Some random exterior clicks:

Clicked at Kalpakkam, on the day of taking possession
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-e0.jpg

Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-e1.jpg

Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-e2.jpg

Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-e3.jpg

Cooling off
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-e4.jpg


The interiors:
That's how the interiors are even today. Since they are the factory fit interiors, planning to carefully clean and resurrect them once I get the car to Coimbatore

Steering & Dash
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-steeringdash.jpg

The front seats
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-frontseat.jpg

Front door pads
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-doorpads.jpg

Rear door pads (note the ash tray & pockets)
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-reardoorpads.jpg

Roof-lining
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-roof.jpg


Finally got the time of the mech and I had given the car for the below works:

1. Clutch change
2. Renew Suspension bushes

Apart from this, had asked him to do a TD and confirm on what else needed attention.

Clicked at Bessy beach whilst waiting for the mech to arrive:

Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-bessy.jpg

Last edited by GTO : 26th July 2016 at 16:43. Reason: Taking live! Thanks for sharing :)
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Old 26th July 2016, 16:40   #2
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April 2015
Padmini had a very long stint with the mech. Nearly 4 months since I left it with him. He took the car on that condition of working only when he can afford to spend time on it and hence it wasn't a problem for me.

Picked up the car and it was brilliant to drive. Brakes were top notch and it stops in a straight line. A lot of work has been done on the car. Suspension, brakes, clutch, engine and what not!

The repair expenses costed as much as I paid for the car! But it drives well now apart from minor rattles here and there. Some pics shot when it visited the beach after these works:


Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-img20150411wa0055.jpg

Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-img20150411wa0061.jpg

Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-img20150411wa0069.jpg

Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-img20150411wa0077.jpg

Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-p_20150411_080505_hdr.jpg

Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-p_20150411_080913_hdr.jpg

Attaching the detailed bills:


1. Coolant 1 Litre
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-pp-works_1.jpg

2. Wheel Alignment
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-pp-works_2.jpg

3. This is the big one in regard to the parts & labour of Suspension & Clutch, listing the items as the handwriting was a little tough to understand.

1. Suspension overhauling and new bush fitting
2. Four wheel brake setting and brake cylinder fitting
3. Gearbox R&R with new clutch plate fitting
4. Suspension shaft phasing, lathe works and bush fitting
5. Clutch release bearing
6. Steering system bush changing & lathe works
7. Engine head water dummy fitting & lathe works
8. Rear wheel bearing removal & new bearing fixing.

Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-pp-works_3.jpg

4. Water wash with oiling & greasing
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-pp-works_4.jpg

5. Oil Filter & Engine Oil
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-pp-works_5.jpg

6. Couldn't figure this one yet
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-pp-works_6.jpg

7. Differential/Crown oil
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-pp-works_7.jpg

March 2016: Exhaust Change

The exhaust had multiple leaks and had to replace the muffler and tail pipe.
Got the parts long back in Oct 2015 from Dhanam and got it fixed only in March 2016 at Chennai.

And subsequently got the fitness renewed and also the greentax and road tax paid.



The Bill
Name:  exhaust1.jpg
Views: 12706
Size:  58.6 KB

The Part
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-exhaust2.jpg

Made in Madurai
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-exhaust3.jpg

The old ones
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-exhaust4.jpg

Unpacking
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-exhaust5.jpg

Welding in progress
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-exhaust6.jpg


MAY 2016: Tappet Clearance

Off late PP was sounding a little off-beat. Had a test drive along with Dhans and we couldn't gauge much. It was from the engine and we were unable to make out the exact reason. To make things even more complicated, the FR brakes jammed.

Managed to drive down to Murugan's garage (SMK). He was convinced it was the tappet noise. I was ruling out the tappet noise since it wasn't very prominent. So we got the valve door removed and voila one of the tappets were loose (we could easily spot this one to be taller than the others).

So jacked up the rear and got the tappet clearance adjusted. Then it was time for some attention to the FR brake. Had to remove and clean the cylinder, there were no oil leaks but it was badly jammed, some 15mins and with help from WD40 we were able to remove it.

Post that, got body wash done before returning home.

Note the 2nd one from right
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-1.jpg

Closer shot, note the height difference
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-2.jpg

The brakes getting attention
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-3.jpg

Post washing & removal of sun film
Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-4.jpg


It's close to 2 yrs since I took possession of the car and I must admit that I have not done justice to her. She has clocked just a little over 1000 kms in these 2 years. Planning to take her to Coimbatore shortly and fix the niggles and the interiors post which I hope she would clock more miles

Last edited by h14 : 26th July 2016 at 16:50. Reason: Taking live! Thanks for sharing :)
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Old 26th July 2016, 16:45   #3
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Default Re: Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me

Thread moved from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section) to the Ownership Section. Thanks for sharing!

Your car sure does bring back memories of my Padmini. That triple-band sunfilm on the rear windscreen is a classic . It's as if every car on the road in the nineties had those!
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Old 26th July 2016, 20:15   #4
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Default Re: Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me

Two words for her...Classy and Beautiful!
That purpleish tint reminds me of the 90s when almost all cars had similar colored tints. The light green color looks soothing and pleasant.
The pictures of the engine bay exhibit a typical old school affair. All mechanical nothing electronic! It's a rarity in today's times
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Old 26th July 2016, 21:21   #5
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Default Re: Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me

Boy-O Boy!!! What an absolute cracker of a car. Brought back a tonne of memories h14, you sure did. Congrats on a priceless possession.
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Old 27th July 2016, 08:31   #6
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Default Re: Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me

Awesome!! The Paddu came searching for you. All the spending you have done is worth every rupee. In my opinion these are the last days where one can 'just' manage to find spares and keep it running, in fact use as a daily drive. May be in a year or 2, it would become a challenge. Padmini and 118 spares have become very scarce

Enjoy driving the 1100, hope you drive it down to Bangalore too some day
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Old 27th July 2016, 09:12   #7
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Default Re: Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me

Sooper vandi saar . She looks beautiful. Always had a weak spot for the Padminis. Looking forward to owning one of these beauties someday. Padmini was one of the best sounding rear wheel drive cars I have ever seen. Keeping an eye on this thread.

Last edited by GTO : 27th July 2016 at 10:42. Reason: Typos
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Old 27th July 2016, 09:44   #8
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Default Re: Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me

Not every one is an enthusiast, and even among them, it is the rare enthusiast who gets lucky to get a car like this ! That looks like a nice clean Padmini .. but you also got to do justice with the pics section.

Congrats, and hope you get to keep her for a long long time.

Happy driving !
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Old 27th July 2016, 10:08   #9
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Default Re: Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me

I am reminded of the tamil movie Pannayaarum Padminiyum - Perhaps, every car buff worth the salt just can't afford to miss this movie. It's a story about how a Padmini lands up with this gentleman village head (fondly called Pannayaar) and how it changes his fortune and his family's for good.
H14, this one looks very strikingly similar to the one in the movie.
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Old 27th July 2016, 10:13   #10
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Default Re: Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me

Super!

My dad still has his 1991 Premier Padmini, and after reading this thread am tempted to restore it and drive it all the way to Hyderabad instead of scrapping it.

Also, your thread reminded me of the long hours I spent looking at the cuttings of the Premier Padmini Deluxe BE ads from the India Today magazines, and fantasizing about growing old enough to drive in the rains while listening to my favourite tracks from "Maine Pyaar Kiya".
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Old 27th July 2016, 10:23   #11
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Default Re: Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me

Oh! Wow! Lovely car, what a find! Many congrats, and I am so glad that this car is in caring hands.

What I loved the most was that visor on the windscreen. Haven't seen one like it since my school days. I guess it was a very popular accessory back then.

If you are based in Chennai, I am now sorely tempted to drive down just to take a spin in that car. The last time I drove a Premier Padmini was back in the early 90's, when I drove my Aunt's '67 Padmini to deliver to the buyer. That was the first time in my life I touched 100kmph
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Old 27th July 2016, 10:31   #12
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Default Re: Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me

Thanks everyone for the lovely words

Quote:
Originally Posted by funkykar View Post
Enjoy driving the 1100, hope you drive it down to Bangalore too some day
Thx Karthik! Would definitely drive it to Bangalore sometime. There is still some more work to be done for me to take it out on the highways with more confidence.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rakesh_r View Post
Sooper vandi saar . She looks beautiful. Always had a weak spot for the Padminis. Looking forward to owning one of these beauties someday. Padmini was one of the best sounding rear wheel drive cars I have ever seen. Keeping an eye on this thread.
Thx Rakesh! Talking about sound, thought you might be interested on the couple of videos from my SuperSelect

SS Videos

Quote:
Originally Posted by condor View Post
but you also got to do justice with the pics section.
Thx condor! More pics will come in a while.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jeeva View Post
I am reminded of the tamil movie Pannayaarum Padminiyum - Perhaps, every car buff worth the salt just can't afford to miss this movie. It's a story about how a Padmini lands up with this gentleman village head (fondly called Pannayaar) and how it changes his fortune and his family's for good.
H14, this one looks very strikingly similar to the one in the movie.
Thx Jeeva! Infact me and few of my friends and our 1100's were involved with this movie crew for the promotions. They made a video of us and it was screened at Sathyam cinemas during the audio launch. That was one of a kind experience for us.

Here is that video :



Quote:
Originally Posted by nishsingh View Post
Super!
My dad still has his 1991 Premier Padmini, and after reading this thread am tempted to restore it and drive it all the way to Hyderabad instead of scrapping it.
Thanks nishsingh. I sincerely hope that your dad's car does not get scrapped. Please do get it back on the road.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KiloAlpha View Post
Oh! Wow! Lovely car, what a find! Many congrats, and I am so glad that this car is in caring hands.
What I loved the most was that visor on the windscreen. Haven't seen one like it since my school days. I guess it was a very popular accessory back then.
Thx KiloAlpha! I've never seen such a visor too!

Quote:
Originally Posted by KiloAlpha View Post
If you are based in Chennai, I am now sorely tempted to drive down just to take a spin in that car. The last time I drove a Premier Padmini was back in the early 90's, when I drove my Aunt's '67 Padmini to deliver to the buyer. That was the first time in my life I touched 100kmph
You are most welcome! I'm planning to get it to Coimbatore sometime in the next few weeks. So do plan to come over to Coimbatore

Last edited by GTO : 27th July 2016 at 10:44. Reason: Quoted post edited
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Old 27th July 2016, 10:59   #13
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Default Re: Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me

Quote:
Originally Posted by nishsingh View Post
Also, your thread reminded me of the long hours I spent looking at the cuttings of the Premier Padmini Deluxe BE ads from the India Today magazines
I remember drooling over this black Padmini:


Some other ads:






Quote:
while listening to my favourite tracks from "Maine Pyaar Kiya".
Hahaha! I call the following songs the 'Padmini / Ambassador / Maruti 800 songs'. This is all we'd listen to those days on TDK cassettes.

Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-capture.jpg

Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me-capture2.jpg
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Old 27th July 2016, 17:26   #14
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Default Re: Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me

Congrats on buying yet another lovely car to your collection. You are lucky to get such well maintained car with all the original interiors & specially from a person who has loved his possession & wanted to give it to someone who would take equally good care of it. Would love to see the car when you are in Coimbatore.
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Old 28th July 2016, 12:10   #15
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Default Re: Enga ooru vandi: The story of how a 1985 Premier Padmini got me

Quote:
Originally Posted by vdm295 View Post
Would love to see the car when you are in Coimbatore.
Thanks! You're welcome home anytime. Shall update this thread once I get it to Coimbatore.
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