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Old 30th March 2020, 13:08   #16
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Default Re: A decade of owning the pre-worshipped Premier Padmini

Arun,
Very nicely written.
Looking at your thread I realized that my Padmini has been with me for almost 20 years now and still continues to provide such joy.
Dhabar Behram once told me to preserve my car forever, glad you are doing it too.

Good luck,

Ps. A recent picture of my Padmini
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Old 30th March 2020, 13:35   #17
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Default Re: A decade of owning the pre-worshipped Premier Padmini

I don't know & never will know what it was - but while growing up I always hated the modern M800 & always wanted to be in a Padmini (well, if a 118NE or Contessa wasn't around i.e.). While we didn't even have a scooter at home, a lot of dad's friends had cars & I'd always end up offending some of them by saying I hate the M800 & will sit in that uncle's Padmini instead. Of course they'd enjoy it with me being a 3-4 year old child.

Each Padmini thread on TBHP always brings back those memories. What a wonderfully maintained car. It takes not just passion but true love to maintain a car, especially an old one like this. And your tattoo surely shows how much you love her. (Good job by the Tattoo artist too must say.) How about adding a couple of wing mirrors (ORVMs) on her? Of course that will take away a bit of originality, but worthwhile addition on our unsafe roads I believe.

Late Behram Dhabhar was really an encyclopedia wasn't he? He'd dwarf even Wikipedia by his giving nature, always ON availability. Felt a bit of pain remembering him while reading the thread. And thanks to forums like this one, he continues to still enlighten us.

Congratulations on such a wonderfully maintained car collection & best wishes. Good health to you all. Take care.
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Old 30th March 2020, 14:17   #18
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Default Re: A decade of owning the pre-worshipped Premier Padmini

Kudos to you for taking the time to restore these classics the right way. I must say, they are a beautiful sight to any petro-head.

I think the best homage we can pay Behram Dhabhar Sir is maintaining these classics the way he would have wanted us.
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Old 30th March 2020, 14:24   #19
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Default Re: A decade of owning the pre-worshipped Premier Padmini

Rated 5 star. This car is definitely legend and you and your friends have maintained it perfectly. Our Mumbai taxis have phased out these so it's rare to spot one these days. Looks like you have a unique car and a unique tattoo now
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Old 30th March 2020, 14:50   #20
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Default Re: A decade of owning the pre-worshipped Premier Padmini

Congratulations and Kudos to you for maintaining both cars.
Your grey car is absolute treat to our eyes.

I was lucky to own padmini for 6 years.Click on my profile to see my car.
Mine was 19 years old when i had to scrap it, thanks to Mumbai weather it was a rust bucket from inside.
Some questions for you :

Have your considered swapping that bench seat for S1 bucket seats? makes a huge difference in comfort.
Also why no mudflaps for your padmini? the classic chequered one's look great.

Was your wife's name Padmini already or you renamed her after marriage?
Good to see you mention Late Mr.Dhabar, i was lucky to have met him twice.

Last edited by silverado : 30th March 2020 at 14:54.
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Old 30th March 2020, 15:09   #21
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Default Re: A decade of owning the pre-worshipped Premier Padmini

Thanks for the post Arun. My dad owned three pre-owned Padminis (not at the same time) and many of my fond childhood memories were spent in this car. Great to see how well kept the two beauties are. Will look forward to hear from you more on these in the future.
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Old 30th March 2020, 16:44   #22
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Default Re: A decade of owning the pre-worshipped Premier Padmini

Superb review Arun. Fiat cars are really something special which can only be experienced once we own one. It slowly grows on you and becomes a part of our life .Here is mine
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A decade of owning the pre-worshipped Premier Padmini-img_20190602_112753.jpg  

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Old 30th March 2020, 17:44   #23
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Default Re: A decade of owning the pre-worshipped Premier Padmini

Compliments to you on lovingly and scrupulously maintaining the old girl and dressing her up in her best saree :-) The car has handsome clean Italian lines. Even today they appeal after 6 decades since it was first introduced in Italy. Our first car bought with our own money was a Premier Padmini - white cream colour, bucket seats and floor shift. For 1990 it seemed so modern despite no AC! It cost Rs 1.60 lakhs IIRC. The Maruti 800 at Rs 2.0 or 2.2 lakhs was out of my league. Junior number one was on his way and wifey said she refuses to ride on my trusted Lamby anymore. We went one Saturday, emptied the bank balance and bought the car. My wife and I were so proud of the car. We couldn't stop trying to impress our friends. Don't know if we succeeded. Must have seemed clownish :-) Thank you for dedicating the thread to GTO and our very dear Behram ji. That is a nice touch.
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Old 30th March 2020, 18:49   #24
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Default Re: A decade of owning the pre-worshipped Premier Padmini

I was almost born inside a 1960 model Fiat. Mom was being taken back to my grandpa's house (a tiny village near Theni), in her 9th month of pregnancy. Her doc said there was another 2 weeks min. Well, a gigantic speed breaker on the Periyakulam road decided otherwise, despite being driven very gently this started the labour pains and 4-5 hours later....yours truly arrived.

My grandpa had a fleet of cars, this one, a Amby and Plymouth Savoy, his dad had I think the first privately owned car in the village a 1940's Dodge but over time he disposed them all, retaining only the Fiat and the Amby. The Savoy was iirc an absolute lemon and doa pretty much.

My dad once drove this and apparently his gear changing was not efficient, and though this happened in the mid 80's, to his dying day last year he always ribbed my dad on his poor driving skills. I though rated very highly on this apparently but that's because he only ever came in my car which were much more modern (a Zing and later a Logan)

In this Fiat in the 60's and 70's he and his family (3 kids and wife) has driven all the way upto Mumbai. Annual 21 day road trips were the norm. Apparently he would map out the entire journey, painstakingly marking relatives houses he could crash in, writing letters, carrying stoves for mid route meals.... Crazy really.

A big regret is that he stopped going long distance by car in the early 2000's, and hasn't ever driven or been driven on our highways made since.

I just shared screenshots of the dashboard in our family group and everyone has nostalgia.

This is also the first car I ever crashed (and hopefully the last), so I would sneak into the garage (was around 16), put it in neutral and simply revv it before sneaking the key back. One day uncle had parked it outside the house, and everyone was off on a siesta. My friends and I decided a quick ride around the village wouldn't hurt, I took it, and near a sharp curve, misjudged it and crashed into a wall. Luckily was only doing some 15kmph so no injuries but the headlamp was gone.

Expected my grandpa to give me hell but surprisingly he...laughed and just told me never to do it again. Uncle was ordered to give me driving lessons to boot.

So many memories. Thanks dude for this post.
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Old 30th March 2020, 18:56   #25
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Default Re: A decade of owning the pre-worshipped Premier Padmini

Dear Arun, your passion shines through this excellent "walk-through" on the commendable effort on the classic Fiat.

Bravo Zulu man for this outstanding effort

Your write-up literally takes the reader through every nook and corner of the Premier. The majestic engine noise of the Premier was something unique. Those were the days when every engine whether that of a Vijay Scooter, Jawa, Bullet, Rajdoot or a Premier Padmini had a standout noise signature. Memories!

It brought back cheerful memories of my own Premier Padmini S1, which was a BE (bench) edition. And not to mention my adventure with that on a long drive from Vizag to Delhi in 1998.

https://www.team-bhp.com/forum/trave...ml#post4771805 (Down the memory lane! Drive from Visakhapatnam to Delhi in 1998)


Once again, outstanding effort
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Old 30th March 2020, 21:04   #26
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Default Re: A decade of owning the pre-worshipped Premier Padmini




Hi Arun,

Great thread, really enjoyed reading through every bit - clearly shows your passion towards Fiats! Hope you enjoy many years of motoring pleasure with the Fiat. When I am in India next, I will drive my Morris Minor over for a catch-up with you and your Fiat!

Cheers,
Praveen
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Old 30th March 2020, 22:25   #27
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Default Re: A decade of owning the pre-worshipped Premier Padmini

Arun, Your passion for the car is shown in your post as well as in your handle, Kudos. It's very well written.
Premier Padmini has long been associated with Indians and there are many memories that each of us will have with this car. Personally I used to like the ride in front seat of this car, rear seat Amby is far better.
This car also had a very durable / sturdy frame providing safety for occupants, though not much discussed. Sharing a picture passed on by a friend. As told to me, the car made more than one somersault and landed belly up. The incident happened more than 30years ago in Bandra and the occupants came out nearly unscathed. (though the car was badly damaged).
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Old 31st March 2020, 00:02   #28
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Default Re: A decade of owning the pre-worshipped Premier Padmini

Doesn't this car meet all the specifications of sub 4 metre car rule? The length (3930mm)as well as engine size (both petrol and diesel) fit the specifications I believe. Quite an amusement.
This car has a proper 3 box shape and barring the aerodynamic considerations, excels in design over today's sub 4 metre sedans in my opinion. Wish I had skills to superimpose something like Hyundai Xcent over the Padmini to understand the shape differences better. Another thing to note is the rear leg space. I would say it was similar or better than current day sub 4 metre sedans. If I am not wrong, column shifter gear stick demised with this car. What flaw in the column shifter stops it from reappearing in current day cars? If one can have gear stick on the dashboard like on KUV1OO or just below it like the Ritz, why not put it on steering column?
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Old 31st March 2020, 09:10   #29
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Default Re: A decade of owning the pre-worshipped Premier Padmini

Quote:
Originally Posted by CrAzY dRiVeR View Post
Thread moved out from the Assembly Line. Thanks for sharing!

The passion really shows in your report. A lovely read, Arun!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kosfactor View Post
Many thanks for taking care of these beautiful cars, it certainly takes a lot of effort. I am also planning to get hold of one such flat for a restoration project, some day it will happen. I will certainly look you up in the next Fiat meet-up.
Quote:
Originally Posted by condor View Post
Arun - thanks for sharing this !

The Padmini is amongst the earliest cars I remember, and the first car we had. Once this lockdown ends, I am coming over ... One round, please. I need to hear and feel that beautiful firing this baby with all it's 40hp has. Modern cars may have all the power in the world today, but the music of this engine is still un-matched.
Thank you, all. Please do follow the FCB thread for the meet updates and hope to see you in the upcoming FCB meets! You can drive around in my Padmini if you wish to.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Malyaj View Post
Superb! Nothing better to bring out nostalgia than photos of Premier Padmini in serene Bangalore (or Mysore) settings. And what a co-incidence, my father bought his first car too in 1991 and it was a Premier Padmini. I still remember going out with him to get the audio system and AC installed. Was absolutely thrilled
Thanks you! Mind telling what happened to the Padmini eventually? And please do share some pics if you have.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aditya View Post
Superb review Arun.
It is great to see that you have kept your old girl going and in good nick. Shows your passion and dedication. The Bangalore weather helps greatly. Here in Mumbai, these oldies needed bodywork every two years due to the proximity to the sea.

Wish you many more miles and years of fun-filled motoring.
Thank you, Aditya. Yes, Bangalore's weather is an added advantage for old vehicles.

IIRC, the Super Select now owned by Ravi Nene was earlier owned by your family, right? Happy that it survives in top shape.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Anuj 6227 View Post
Excellent write-up Arun
Does the looming question about banning of 15 year old cars in India bother you?
Not really. If at all such a rule comes in, it is inevitable. There are many Vintage car owners including Our member - Distinguished Bhpian anjan_c2007 who are in touch with concerned Govt. officials suggesting the right way to implement such rules.
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Old 3rd April 2020, 07:48   #30
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Default Re: A decade of owning the pre-worshipped Premier Padmini

Quote:
Originally Posted by boeuff View Post
Arun,
Very nicely written.
Ps. A recent picture of my Padmini
Thank you! You have preserved a rare early Padmini with fittings of Premier President! Hats off!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Reinhard View Post

Each Padmini thread on TBHP always brings back those memories. What a wonderfully maintained car. It takes not just passion but true love to maintain a car, especially an old one like this. And your tattoo surely shows how much you love her. (Good job by the Tattoo artist too must say.) How about adding a couple of wing mirrors (ORVMs) on her? Of course that will take away a bit of originality, but worthwhile addition on our unsafe roads I believe.

Late Behram Dhabhar was really an encyclopedia wasn't he? He'd dwarf even Wikipedia by his giving nature, always ON availability. Felt a bit of pain remembering him while reading the thread. And thanks to forums like this one, he continues to still enlighten us.

Congratulations on such a wonderfully maintained car collection & best wishes. Good health to you all. Take care.
Thank you! I want to add the wing mirrors, much needed for Bangalore's traffic.
So true about Behram Sir. We miss him so much!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by mac187 View Post
I think the best homage we can pay Behram Dhabhar Sir is maintaining these classics the way he would have wanted us.
Absolutely, agree!

Quote:
Originally Posted by AZT View Post
Rated 5 star. This car is definitely legend and you and your friends have maintained it perfectly. Our Mumbai taxis have phased out these so it's rare to spot one these days. Looks like you have a unique car and a unique tattoo now
Thank you!

Quote:
Originally Posted by silverado View Post
Congratulations and Kudos to you for maintaining both cars.
Have your considered swapping that bench seat for S1 bucket seats? makes a huge difference in comfort.
Also why no mudflaps for your padmini? the classic chequered one's look great.

Was your wife's name Padmini already or you renamed her after marriage?
Good to see you mention Late Mr.Dhabar, i was lucky to have met him twice.
Thank you! S1's bucket seats are more comfortable, but since this is not my daily drive, I am ok with the bench seats. I recently bought a set of chequered mud flaps, will put them on soon.

My wife's name is Nandini!

Quote:
Originally Posted by hdman View Post
Thanks for the post Arun. My dad owned three pre-owned Padminis (not at the same time) and many of my fond childhood memories were spent in this car. Great to see how well kept the two beauties are. Will look forward to hear from you more on these in the future.
Wow, any pics of the Padmini? Thank you!

Last edited by arun1100 : 3rd April 2020 at 08:02.
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