The iconic model from yesteryear, Hindustan Ambassador had a very long run in the country reckoning close to six decades. Revered for years, Ambassador’s production began in 1958 and lasted until 2014 owing to dying demand amid customers. The now defunct model enjoyed zenith and can easily be recognized as one of the greatest models India ever produced. In fact, it was the first made in India model that was later used by politicians due to its heavy duty body and ‘Swadesi’ identity.
In a bid to bring back the iconic model to life, an online petition has been filed on Change.org asking Prime Minister Office and Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi to bring it back from the edge of death. Struggling with funds, Hindustan Motors faced challenge to keep the production going amid sluggish demand.
Built on the monocoque chassis, HM Ambassador had large proportions and offered ample space inside the cabin. Although it did lack on the feature front, but that did not matter much back then. Yet another aspect that made HM Ambassador a viable car was its ability to churn good mileage.
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While fans are probing to reinstate production, there are many challenges the company has to deal with before reviving the model. Firstly, the engine set up on the Ambassador did not comply with the BSIV emission norms which became one of the many reasons to axe the car. Under the hood, Ambassador came in various options including the 1.5 litre, 37bhp oil burner, 1.8 litre petrol engine good for 75bhp, 2.0 litre diesel unit making 50bhp and the 2.0 litre turbocharged mill putting out 75bhp. It is to be noted that both the 2.0 litre diesel units were borrowed from Isuzu.
Now if HM contemplates bringing back Ambassador, it has to use new mechanicals for the car that comply with BSIV emissions. Besides, effective October 2017, it will be imperative for all cars in India to house ABS, driver-side airbag, seat belt reminder and rear parking sensors as standard provisions. Additionally, all the vehicles will have to pass the mandatory guidelines inclusive of the crash test and fuel economy test.
This may sound tedious but isn’t it worth a try after all Ambassador once ruled the Indian roads and is the first model from India to hit the production line. Apart from the new engine line-up, the car would also need restyling to give it a new look that retains its vintage essence. That said Volkswagen Beetle is another such example that dates back to late 1930s and continues production till date. Ambassador could be one such model from India, all you need to do it sign the petition at Charge.org and show your support.
You can also sign the petition here