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Austin powers generations of Auto addicts

Gyan Sharma, who has a passion for cars, grew up tinkering with exotic automobiles, has hands-on insight into the mechanics of classic cars.

india Updated: May 08, 2003 18:02 IST

His father was popularly called the Convertible Man of the city and his grandfather was one of the first people in the country to understand the nuances of restoring a Rolls Royce.

Gyan Sharma, 41, proprietor of Krishna Motors, Connaught Place grew up tinkering with exotic automobiles. As an apprentice to his father Bhula Bhai Sharma, who specialised in converting dilapidated convertibles into four-wheeled beauties, young Gyan had hands-on insight into the mechanics of classic cars.

"The passion for convertibles ran in our blood. The convertible used in Dev Anand's Munim Ji, yes, the same one in which he serenades Nalini Jaywant with Jeevan Ke Safar Mein Rahi, was restored at our workshop. Similarly, many of the Shammi Kapoor movies of yore used cars serviced at our garage. But somehow we have focused on restoring smaller cars," he says.

It is small cars such as the Baby Austin that have won numerous awards for Sharma as he proudly reels out the names. "The Chummy has won us the Bharatpur trophy in the Statesman Vintage Rally in 1995, '96, '97 and '99. I have also won the Bhola Bhai Trophy for the best British car under 1,500 cc and the was the runners up in the inaugural Jack Daniel's rally as well. Plus, smaller cars are cuter looking and appeal to everybody, besides being easier to maintain," adds Prem Sharma, his younger brother and business partner.

And now, his 15-year-old son Avesh is as passionate about the legacy of classic cars as his father and great grandfather were. Four generations of four-wheel aficionados, that's the Sharma family for you.|

Four-Wheeled Beauties
Here are some of the classic and vintage automobiles restored to almost pristine condition by Krishna Motors
1.Ford A, 1928: Owned by Pavan Mehta of Mahattas, Connaught Place, restored by Gyan Sharma
2.Austin Harley, 1933: A rare, exotic piece of art, driven by Ankur Bhatia of Amadeus
3. MG-B, 1972: The object of philanthropist B M Misra's affection, mechanically restored at Krishan motors in tandem with Pandit & Company
4.Opel Olympia, 1939: One of the many cars collected by connoisseur V N Gupta, that was touched up here.
5.MG-TA, 1935: A beautiful antique piece conceived before the World War that has admirers around the globe, owned by Ravi Mohan.

First Published: May 08, 2003 17:55 IST