As one of the world’s most prolific classic car owners with a collection spanning several eras including Mercedes, Rolls-Royce, Jaguars, Mustangs, Corvettes, Sunbeams, Cadillac’s, Packard’s, Lanchesters, Daimlers and Delage's, it was only natural that Dr Ravi Prakash would be invited to show at Pebble Beach and now, for the first time in the UK, two of his prized collection will be on display at this year’s Salon Privé.
1926 Rolls-Royce Phantom I
The lovely Phantom was received for test on 22nd April 1926. Originally consigned to Rippon Bros, the Yorkshire coachbuilders, for stock, it was instead re-designated for the Maharani of Cooch Behar in India. Cooch Behar, now part of West Bengal, is a planned town built by Maharaja Nripendra Narayan in the late 19th century. The 24th Maharajah, Nripendra Narayan died in 1922, leaving the princely state under the Regency Council presided over by his widow, Maharani Indiri Devi, whom he had wed in London in 1913. Rather than being bodied by Rippon, however, 53TC was sent to Maythorn & Sons of Biggleswade, Bedfordshire for an enclosed limousine body. Dunlop steel artillery wheels were fitted to special order, along with a 90 mph (145 kmph) speedometer and Smiths eight-day clock.
1930 Delage D8 S
Maharaja Yeswanth Rao Holkar II of Indore, Madhya Pradesh, India, was completely fascinated by the Art Deco movement of the Delage when he visited the London Auto show in 1930 – during this time he had shipped over £4 million of furniture from Europe. While it was ‘en vogue’, along with the furniture, he also imported quite a fancy piece of automotive sculpture – a 1930 Delage D8 S – with its exquisite Art Deco inspired Figoni coachwork that had just starred at the 1930 edition of the Paris Auto Salon. With a 120 bhp 4050cc straight eight, two door sports tourer the Delage D8 was a worthy rival to the Bugattis of its time.
Dr Prakash – affectionately called “Doc” by the vintage car world acquired his first ‘classic’ in 1979 - a Sunbeam-Talbot 1937, 2 litre sports tourer, willed to him by Retd. General Mahadevan, Commander of the Indian Army who lived in Madras. This fuelled his passion and since then, Prakash has amassed over 225 cars, 60 motorcycles, Horse carriages, Cycles ... housed in ‘Kala Farm’, on the outskirts of Bangalore, Southern India.