Limousines may not be practical or for that matter even driveable on narrow, congested roads like those found in most parts of our country. But they have stature, and plenty of it. Long cars turn heads and a limousine is the ultimate style statement in a country where the personal automobile is still a luxury, far from being a daily necessity. So, stretched limousines fashioned out of Indian cars is still in vogue, and this class of vehicles enjoys steady demand in India. Today, we’ll explore five more such options in Part II of our Limo List.
Hindustan Ambassador Limousine
Once upon a time in India, when the winds of liberalization hadn’t yet blown, the Hindustan Ambassador was the byword in luxury, for the vehicle’s sofa like back seat delivered comfort in ample measure. The Ambassador’s usage in officialdom also meant that the car was revered among most Indians.
Taking an Ambassador and stretching it to make for a limousine is perhaps the most natural progression for this car, whose back seat has accommodated the most powerful Indians’ backsides. Why, Hindustan Motors could even have been in business if an official Ambassador Limo rolled out of Uttarpara, as a reimagination of “The times of the Raj”. For now though, here’s a custom built Hindustan Ambassador limo, a car whose stately look has been bastardized with multiple car parts. What emerges is a gargoyle of sorts. Call it limousine if you want.
Hyundai Sonata Limousine
The Hyundai Sonata, the forefather of the car that has just been discontinued on account of poor sales, was a poor seller too. Built with a generous helping of inspiration from a certain Jaguar, the Sonata looked and felt plush. The luxury car getting transformed into a limousine is almost like a logical step for the Sonata.
The Sonata built thus is stretched generously. Then the interiors have received a luxurious touch, in tune with the opulence and grandeur that the exteriors project.
Honda CR-V Limousine
Known as an SUV that drives like a car, the Honda CR-V has been eponymous with refinement, and how smooth riding and handling SUVs can be when designers go all out with the monocoque chassis. By lengthening the CR-V to limousine proportions, someone has just undone everything the Honda designers have burnt midnight oil toiling for, However, in terms of sheer appeal, the CR-V limousine stands heads and shoulders over the bone stock crossover. And it is for this purpose that this custom built CR-V graces our limo list.
Tata Sumo Grande/Movus Limousine
The Tata Sumo Grande gets grander. Stretched to limousine dimensions, the MUV from Tata Motors handles the aftermath very well. The butch proportions and tall stance of the Sumo Grande endow the MUV with enough heft to pull off the limo look with ease. On the inside, the Sumo Grande gets suitably decked up to serve its main purpose, serve as a means of transport for marriage parties 0f the rich. The Sumo Grande is now known as the Movus, a move that Tata Motors made a couple of years ago to perk up sales of this MUV. It hasn’t worked though.
Toyota Innova Limousine
The Innova is one MPV that family car buyers and cab operators love alike. As reliable as the sun, the Innova is a people mover of choice for everyone who values a fuss free and comfortable MPV. The Innova becoming a limousine was only a matter of time given the huge popularity this people mover enjoys. The stretched version of the MPV is more of a Pullman version with six doors than a full fledged limousine. The Innova’s stock interiors are nothing to write home about. The limousine treatment ups the luxury ante by a few notches to make the MPV quite plush and comfortable.
Read Part 1: Indian Cars modified into limos