Dubai: Three generations of a family are embarking on an extraordinary journey, driving a vintage 1950 car from Dubai to London, creating an unparalleled opportunity for bonding.
Daman Thakore, aged 50, along with his daughter Devanshi, aged 21, and his 75-year-old father Deval, are setting out on a remarkable international overland expedition.
Their chosen vehicle is a custom-built 1950 MG (model YT) that has been in the family for 48 years, purchased by Deval himself. The journey commences in Dubai, marking the start of their road trip across borders, with London as their ultimate destination.
“We picked Dubai to begin our international leg of the journey as the city is a melting pot and symbolises the theme of ‘one family, one future',” said Daman who was presenting the car with his family on Thursday August 30 at Gems Modern Academy.
12,000 kmnumber of kilometres to be covered by the journey
The three generations aim to travel 12,000 kms and 16 countries onboard their vintage car bought in 1950.
“We have been planning this trip for over six years. It was pretty much our dining table conversations for years and finally we are here to embark on our family adventure,” said Devanshi.
About the vintage car
Deval reminisced buying “Lal Pari” (Red Angel) 48 years ago when Daman was two years old. “We have done several trips on this as a family. When my son got married he and his bride took their first ride together on this car. My grand-daughter enjoyed several rides on this. We thought of taking this to the next level by embarking on an international trip.”
Prepping Lal Pari
Daman said work has been on since two years - with planning and restoration of the 73-year-old car to ready it. “There are only 900 of these cars left in the world of which only 100 are running. So finding parts and getting parts from around the world is a challenge,” said Daman.
He added: “We restored the car in 2019. The mechanical restoration took eight months. We took care of everything and replaced parts that were not working in prime condition. However, more then 90 percent of the car has the original parts like the head lamps, oil containers and others.”
Daman who runs a family owned business - Amin Equipment - said there is no external funding for the trip and is a personal investment.
How this vintage got its name
Daman said: “Lal Pari” (Red Angel) got its name from all the bed time stories his mom read him and his sister.
“Lal Pari” is said to have a unique ability to bring a smile on peoples face where ever it goes. “She has a huge presence on social media including 62 million views on Facebook and 12 million views on YouTube.
Journey to spread smiles
Devanshi said : “We want to spread smiles across the world. In this day and age of stress, we wish to bring joy to the people of the countries we visit and interact with locals. We will also visit vintage car clubs along the way.”
She added : “A silver hood ornament of the world’s largest Statue of Unity has been designed exclusively by world renowned jewellers C Krishniah Chetty and will be adorned on the hood of Lal Pari to convey message of world unity and One world, One Family.”
The family Drove from Ahmedabad to Statue of Unity and then to Gateway of India, Mumbai before shipping the car to Dubai.
“From here our trip will transverse through UAE, Iran, Azerbejan, Georgia, Turkey, Bulgaria, North Macedonia, Albania, Montenegro, Croatia, Italy, Switzerland, Luxembourg, Germany, Belgium, France and finally ending in The United Kingdom. We shall cover around 200-250 kms a day,” explained Daman who added the entire trip is a personal journey and no external funding is in place.
The expedition team also has Vinay Panjwani (Director of Photography), Mukesh Bararia (Vintage Car Expert).
Along with Lal Pari is a camper van fondly named “Lal Pari ki Saheli” (Lal Pari’s friend). It will help the main car when it touches treacherous routes.
The camper van has sleeping bags, a sink, vessels to cook, readymade food items and filming equipment. Riding in it will be Lal Pari’s support group, including the a good friend Madhu, who helped restore the car. Vinay Panjwani, will be in the van capturing all the moments of this journey as a documentary.
The family will only carry three pairs of clothes during their trip, which is expected to take up to 90 days. “Travel is about the adventure and the experience. So we are going light,” said Devansh.