Name: Manjeet Kwatra
Job: Key Account Manager
Wheels: 1972 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray, 1933 Harley Davidson VLE, 1942 Harley Davidson WLA, 1951 BMW R51/3, 1996 Harley Davidson Fatboy, 2005 Harley Davidson Fatboy CVO, 2010 Custom Bobber and 2014 Harley Davidson Limited CVO.
In the UAE: 16 years
Welcome back to wheels, Manjeet! The last time you were here your Corvette had a white paint job, now it is silver – what gives?
It’s great to be back! Well, when I first bought it in early 2015, it required a lot of attention and after tackling the mechanical side of it all (servicing the brakes, replacing the worn out flywheel, clutch plate, pressure plate, suspension bushes and even having the carburettor sent to an expert in the US and rebuilt) the outcome was a 1972 Corvette that drives like new. Once the interior was freshened up (the carpet was replaced and my wife and I actually restored the red leather seats ourselves; honestly, I surprised myself with the outcome!) it was time to do something about the exterior. From the VIN details it became obvious that the first owner had at some point in time changed the paint from the original Pewter Silver to white. Pewter Silver was a one-year only and rare colour for the 1972 Corvette (just 1,372 of the 26,959 built that year had this hue) and as I had always intended to restore the car to its original glory, I went ahead and had it repainted. It spent two months at the body shop (all the body panels were aligned perfectly) and I must admit that the Pewter Silver and red interior combination looks great.
It definitely does — what else have you had done to it since we last saw you?
I have been a huge fan of the Turbine hubcaps from the Seventies that GM used to offer as an additional option on the Corvettes and managed to hunt these down online. I love the change in looks to the car that these bring.
It’ll be winter season soon and we bet you can’t wait to whip those t-tops off and cruise!
Not only do the T-tops comes off, the rear glass also pops out on this model and I am so eager for the weather to cool down a bit so that I can enjoy the drive even better. I would like to enjoy drives with like-minded people and their vintage vehicles here in Dubai and I am tempted to apply for an ATA Carnet for India and take the car with me for a short holiday; it would be out of the world to be able to drive this beauty from Mumbai to Goa and back. Someday…
Let's move on to your incredible Harley Davidson shrine - which has literally taken over a large part of your home and looks fabulous on display - how did this begin?
For years I have been purchasing Harley related items from all over the globe mostly though auction websites and swap meets in the US (when travelling, I don’t do the usual touristy type of things — instead, I set off to the Harley showrooms and to any local vintage car/motorcycle stores!) and had these on display and it has just grown exponentially. It takes the pride of place at home and I am always told that I could open my own museum if I wanted to! Luckily, the house is an L-shaped structure so one end hosts my man-cave and the other is like any other normal home should be.
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