Old is gold - vintage car museum, Dharmashala, India - 01

Chevrolet Van (4 Cyl. 21 HP, BYF 7820).www.team-bhp.com
Manjusha Museum, Dharmasthala -.tourmet.com
Very old automobiles, according to old car freaks, come under three categories: antique cars, vintage cars, classic cars, etc. The Brass Era (Horseless carriage era) is referred to the period  from 1890 to 1919.  Automobiles produced prior to World War I are considered to be antiques, whereas vintage car is commonly referred to the older automobile manufactured during the period  1919 to 1930. In the modern sense, cars produced  from 1940s to 1980s are frequently called old cars. The  distinctions, and criteria used by them  among antique, vintage, classic cars  and so on may  vary, but consensus within any country is often maintained by major car clubs. The car ownership that started off in 1919 as something of a rarity and of status symbol,  turned to be a necessity in the 1930s  because of the concept of mass production of car with simple mechanism affordable by all sections of the society. This  is true of the US. Such  sturdy, old vehicles,  with strange designs of stunning beauty and workmanship,  are valuable and well protected. They are seldom driven on the roads and we can seem them only at 'old  car shows or in the museums only. Such antique car museums are rare in India, because it is difficult to maintain them, considering it costs, maintenance, etc. Vintage_car Manjusha Museum, Dharmasthala, Karnataka draws lots of tourists and it has an array of impressive old cars that take us back to the by gone era.

Some interesting facts about  early old cars:

Above image: German Flocken Elektrowagen of 1888, regarded as the first electric car of the world.........

01. On Christmas Eve in 1801, Richard Trevithick of England built and ran a steam-powered carriage, called the Puffing Devil, that is considered the first horseless carriage but Nicolas-Joseph Cugnot took the honor of introducing the  first steam powered vehicle with the fardier à vapeur in 1770 and 1771 capable of human transportation. In 1807, François Isaac de Rivaz designed the first car powered by an internal combustion engine fueled by hydrogen
Cugnot's steam wagon, the second (1771) version.en.wikipedia.org
1801road locomotive 'Puffing Devil. en.wikipedia.org/

02. The first production of automobiles was by Karl Benz in 1888 in Germany and, under license from Benz, in France by Emile Roger. The four-stroke petrol (gasoline) internal combustion engine, an important part of  modern automotive propulsion was invented by   Nikolaus Otto. The similar four-stroke diesel engine was  developed by Rudolf Diesel.

03. The Flocken Elektrowagen of 1888 by German inventor Andreas Flocken is believed to be the first real electric car of the world

04. George Selden of Rochester, NY  was the first to get the US patent on November 5, 1895.

05. Gasoline automobiles were produced by Elwood Haynes in 1894, by Ransom Olds in 1895.

06. Four-wheel braking from a common foot pedal was introduced, using hydraulically actuated brakes.

07. Towards the end of the vintage era, the system of octane rating of fuel was introduced, allowing comparison between fuels. In 1923 the gasoline additive Ethyl made its debut at the Indy 500 that resulted in a boost in octane from the 50's to the 80'

08. Over two million cars were still produced in 1929 and 1930. During the same period many companies went broke an also saw the development of the high-speed diesel engines from1930. They  began to replace them for wagons.

09. In 1902 and in 1909 built the World's first mile of concrete road on Woodward Avenue in Detroit. One  Horatio Earle introduced the concept of  Interstate highway system in 1902 and made a proposal to the US government.

 10. From 1919 to 1929, US saw the growth of ''The Big Three'':   General Motors,  Ford Motor company and   Chrysler Corporation. Among the British companies Morris, Austin, Standard  and Vauxhall were well known.

 11. The most rudimentary  safety features, front wheel brakes and hydraulic brakes, began appearing on cars in the 1920s and 1930s respectively.

Presented below are some of the rare old cars that one can not see on the Indian roads. Vintage car Manjusha Museum, Dharmasthala, Karnataka, Southern India has an excellent collection old cars. I suppose there are more than 50 vehicles in the exhibition hall in perfect working conditions. When I visited this place a couple of years ago, visitors were not allowed to take photos. The entire  car collection was done under the able care  of Sri  Veerendra Hegade, who is not only a connoisseur of antique cars, etc.,  but also an able administrator who runs several educational institutions in Karnataka with dedication, besides taking care of the management of the Dharmashala Shiva temple. The photo credit goes to :  

1903 Renault ( 1 Cyl., 4.5 HP).www.team-bhp.com
Above image:  Considered as  one of the oldest running cars in India, it was owned by  the  Maharajah of Bikaner. It features a Type D, De Dion Bouton engine and has a double phaeton body style. Restoration was done  in Bangalore.

1928 Nash
1928 Nash
1928 Nash Special Six Rumble Seat Coupe (6 Cyl., 20 HP, .www.team-bhp.com
Above image: This is a very rare car as very few this vintage cars  survive in India. This car was rescued from a farmer in Shimoga Dist., who had converted it into a pick up! Fortunately, the farmer had retained most of the parts and hence this car was restored to its former glory.

925 Fiat (4 Cyl., 10.50 HP. MSC 354).www.team-bhp.com

It is  reported that this old car  was used by Gandhiji when he was on tour of Karnataka and Tamilnadu in 1929. The museum possesses a certificate given to Gandhiji on using this car. This car was got from Pondicherry in 1970.

Vauxhall 20/60  www.team-bhp.com

Above image:  This  Vauxhall 20/60  is the first major launch after the acquisition of Vauxhall by General Motors in 1925. The car is again a rare car and has a partition glass. The color is to get attention as per note.  The Vauxhall has a  fluted bonnet 
Chevrolet Van (4 Cyl. 21 HP, BYF 7820).www.team-bhp.com
  Above image: The yellow van next to the ambulance. Details are not available  about this vehicle.
930 Morris Oxford (4 Cyl. 15 HP, MYE 204). www.team-bhp.com

The note cited that this car was collected from Sirsi, Karnataka and used to carry carry devotees to Dharmathala as a taxi in 1940's.
1931 Fiat ( 6 Cyl. 20 HP, CTW 2000).www.team-bhp.com
\Details unavailable.
  Ford Jeep, 1943 model. WW II US army used this kind of jeep.14 HP,4 cylinder.with soft light. Battle compatible.
         Skoda, right hand drive, 1937 model.

 1938 Lincoln Zephyr ( V12 Cly., 4.4 Litre, GCB 4324)
This model -  1938 Lincoln Zephyr  with 4.4 lit. was manufactured from 1936 to 1942. As per technical information, it was powered by a small 75 degree 
V 12 engine developed from Ford's flathead V8. But its V 8  caused terrible over heating problems and could be corrected only in 1942 with the introduction of iron heads. Not many such cars of this type  with V 12 engine survive in India. literally it was a gas guzzler.

1931 Fiat ( 6 Cyl. 20 HP, CTW 2000).www.team-bhp.com
Details unavailable.
Abobe image: This car was acquired by a KVCCC member from Chennai and restored in Bangalore, before he sold it to the museum. It is a  Fiat 502  car going by its HP. Driver enters from the passenger side as the spare tyre ensures that the right front door is fixed.
1929 Studebaker President (8 Cyl., 40 HP, MER 5051).www.team-bhp.com