Unlike most car rallies, the ‘Joy Ride’ conducted by the Karnataka Vintage Classic Car Club (KVCC) and Bangalore Classic Scooter Club (BCSC), in association with Forum Mall, saw over 50 orphan children from the Srinidhi Charitable and Educational Trust enjoy a unique Sunday morning.
From a 1927 Austin to 1957 Mercedes Ponton 180, from a 1949 Buick to a 1957 Baby Hindustan, 30 bikes and 30 classic cars were on display for the public outside the mall. The rally, which was flagged off by Ashish Kumar Ballal, former field hockey goalkeeper, went from Forum Mall to Indiranagar and back.
Premnath, founder secretary of KVCC, said that Bangalore has seen tremendous growth in the vintage car culture. “There’s a lot more interest and awareness now. At least compared to when we started in 1978, this is an overwhelming response,” he said.
Suri, who showcased four cars and an original 1960 Vespa at the rally, noted that restoration and maintenance of these cars is not an easy job. “It’s expensive to get these cars from junk to working condition and to buy the parts from abroad. But Bangalore has the best restorers who truly value authenticity. The only problem we face is traffic and people gathering around the cars at signals,” he said.
The bikes ranged from Labrettas to Vespas and even included an Andy Warhol-inspired bike, owned by Gokul, the co-founder of BCSC.
“I’m a big fan of Andy’s work and of Marilyn Monroe. That’s where I got the idea of getting a Marilyn Monroe wrap for the bike. It’s a 1982 Vijay Super model but since I name all my bikes after women, I call her Marilyn,” shared Gokul.
It was a fun outing for car lovers and families alike, especially the little ones! Four-year-old Aditya said, “I’m very excited to be here. I went to church and rushed here to see the cars. I want to sit in all of them. My favourite is the Buick.”
Expatriates were also seen in the crowd. Rosie, an Australian, said, “It’s really cool to see something like this in India. It’s a nice collection of cars and bikes and my favourite was the Marilyn Monroe bike. But it would have been nice if it happened on a field because it was really crowded at the mall.”