Mumbai - Remember the Fiat? That flat topped little car that ruled Mumbai roads in the 1960s, the sleeker cousin of the cumbersome though roomy Ambassador was the upwardly mobile Mumbaikar's dream car in those days.
From the 1970s, the black and yellow taxis in Mumbai took to the Fiat Premier Padmini models like a duck to water. Every other taxi had to be a Premier Padmini, which was a joint partnership with the Italian car maker.
Post 2000, this relationship started souring and now, the Fiats are almost on the verge of extinction.
But there are still a few ardent lovers of this beauty on four wheels - like Mumbaikar Rony Vesuna who are trying to revive the Fiat as part of a colourful Mumbai heritage.
Rony, along with other Fiat lovers, have formed the MFCC - the Mumbai Fiat Classic Car Club in June 2007. Today, the club has 65 members and over 125 cars in the collection of its members. The club is involved in the restoration of these ageless beauties as well as in organising events to keep the Fiat alive in public memory.
The club originated in Mumbai but is now slowly spreading its tentacles to cities like Bengaluru, Delhi, Pune in order to unite Fiat lovers from other cities as well. Not to be outdone, Fiat lovers from other countries are also connecting with this club.
If not on the roads, the venture is surely helping the Fiat to stay alive in public memory!