Sunny state classics - GVCVC vintage waves
What's your idea of a perfect summer day? Mine is blue skies, a sultry breeze blowing, chilled nariyal paani or beer in hand, good music, happy people and ideally parked in Goa! That’s pretty much exactly how the 14th of May 2023 played out at Vasco da Gama, Goa at the GVCVC Vintage Waves with the Indian Navy – a tryst with cars and Naval aircraft over the years.
Goa is definitely the most loved state in the country and famous for its beaches, good food and for all you petrolheads — vintage and classic cars. Being a Portuguese territory until 1961, Goans were spoilt for choice with the cars they could buy, with the best of German, English, American and Italian marques on sale in this sleepy little enclave.
The GVCVC Vintage Waves rally co-hosted with the Indian Navy, aimed to celebrate our rich classic car culture and tie it in with the Navy’s collection of classic Naval aircraft at the Naval Aviation Museum, Bogmalo — the only such collection in the country!
A total of 61 cars were parked on display at the venue Rajhans, where eager Goans as well as Naval officers and their families, young and old came from near and far to see the lineup.
Parked in the centre of the display were the Americans — a display of ’60s design flair, grandeur and general Americana. A 1961 Cadillac Sedan that’s been a part of the Dempo family since new, a pair of Chevrolet Impalas in sedan and chop top guise and a single Indian assembled Chevrolet Thriftmaster pickup truck specced in rare high roof guise belonging to Mr Viveck Goenka.
The Volkswagens are always a smile inducing crowd favourite like a bag of M&Ms, one in every possible colour! The Beetles were ever present, showing the older and later-gen models, identifiable by the sloping headlights to the later circular, more upright style. Special mention must be made of the very rare type 34 Karmann Ghia “Razorback”at the show that brought together two of the three known cars in the country today. And of course a rare VW Kombi split bus made it to the rally after a long hiatus.
A panzer brigade of classic WW2 jeeps, part of the Manjunath Dukle collection, made their presence felt. The Indian Heritage Class was solidly represented with the Fiats, HM Ambassadors, Padminis as well as a duo of 118 NEs. Other cars worthy of mention are a 1938 Morris 8, a once common but now rare 1950s Wolseley, a Morris Oxford V “Farina” — the successor to the Ambassador that we got in India, a pair of Austin Minis and a first-generation Chevy Nova.
GVCVC President Gautam Pai Kakode added glamour to the already starry Mercedes lineup with his duo of stately 220S models. The E-Class lineage was present with the W110, W115 , W123 and W124 in multiple colour and engine options.
The absolute highlight was a tryst with the aircraft, part of our Indian Navy’s illustrious history now showcased beautifully at the Naval Museum, Bogmalo. Here we got to park up close to an assemblage of Breguet Alize, Hawker Sea Hawk, DeHav Vampire & Devon, Sea Harrier as well as helicopters such as the SeaKing, Chetak and Kamov Ka25.
The biggest display of camaraderie and the Thrill of Driving was from the out of state participants who drove down from Pune and various parts of Karnataka especially for this event. As the sunset lit up the skies in tropical hues, I couldn’t help but feel a wave of gratitude to team GVCVC and the participants for their flawless organisation of yet another uniquely themed event to promote Goan Vintage and Classic Car culture.