We’ve covered enough replica cars in the past, so an introduction isn’t necessary. However, just to brush up the memory, a replica car is made to replicate a bigger, more premium vehicle (something that the replica aspires to be). Following the tradition, we’ve found another five (make it four, actually!) lovely examples of replica cars in India.
Shelby AC Cobra
Caroll Shelby is sadly no more, but that doesn’t mean the world has forgotten him. He’s survived by the innumerable fans he and his creations made around the world. Now laying hands on one of the early examples of Shelby AC Cobra is very tough, and even if you have enough money and find a good example, running it in India on a daily basis is going to be equally difficult.
To save you from the misery is this replica, jointly made by Gujarat based MJP Motors and Brit kit-car maker RDynamics. It’s powered by a 4.4-litre V8 engine, so expect it to be properly ‘lairy’, much like the original.
Jaguar’s Heritage division might be working day and night to ensure their fleet is as pristine as it can get, but a couple of thousand miles away is a D-Type replica that the company might be proud of. While far from original, the Kolkata based replica looks so special that you might even give up the idea of seeing the real one.
Here are a few things that make it unique: the distinct front-end, a matte-green paintjob (obviously when British Green is for the real thing!), riveted body panels, beautiful looking steel rims, and a cockpit that won’t make you feel that you’re in anything lesser than a racing car from the past.
While Mahindra has already used the ‘FJ’ moniker for Jeep FC-based products, we can’t use that, so let’s call this one ‘Mahindra’s FJ’. Based on an Armada, this tastefully modified vehicle resembles the timeless Land Cruiser FJ – the FJ Cruiser came much later – and is one of the best looking Armadas around.
Visible modifications include new tyres and wheels, an updated front end with Toyota FJ-like headlamps, a custom bumper, and a huge winch. The rear (beyond the C-pillar) appears to have been chopped off, while the rest of the vehicle has some added muscle to its design thanks to more prominent wheel arches. The articulation also suggests the presence of an upgraded suspension system.
When the famed racing driver Sir Stirling Moss won the Mille Miglia, he must not have thought that a couple of decades later an Indian design house would make a replica of his race-winning SLR. Bonito Chhabria, son of Dilip Chhabria, made the replica using the underpinnings of another Merc, a W124 E-Class. It looks no less stunning, and while it might not be able to fetch the high value the SLR or even the 300 SL commands, the replica has enough individuality to keep the owner proud and happy.
But how can the selection be complete without an outrageous example, so here it is:
Said to be based on a Maruti Esteem, this ragtop ‘Ferrari’ is the real deal (read ‘repulsive’). From the limited pictures available of the mod, it’s clear that the originality is long gone, although there was some effort to mimic the real Ferraris – bulges on the bonnet, air scoops at the rear – but sadly it has all gone wrong.
The Prancing Horse is flanked by Camry’s oversized headlamps, and the red-coloured vehicle is complemented by overly shiny chrome rims. Don’t talk about subtlety, because there isn’t any.