Location: Mahim railway station, Mumbai, India (19° 2′ 6″ N, 72° 50′ 24″ E)
Date: 10 April 2007; 1040 am
Camera: Canon 400D with Sigma 17-70/f2.8-4.5
Most new visitors to India especially Mumbai and Delhi are surprised by the sights of the “classic Fiat” taxis. Surprise in that these cars are quite classic in nature as they are 1960’s models. However these models which are known as Premier Padmini still form the bulk of the axis that ploughs the streets of Mumbai and Delhi. They are distinctively painted with black and yellow liveries with the bottom half painted black and upper half painted yellow. Most of these taxis do not have air-conditioning and is quite an experience to ride in one in the summer. Furthermore the interior is rather small- those with longer legs will find them quite uncomfortable. Some of these taxis have air-conditioning installed but passengers will have to pay extra for having it turned on for a journey. An interesting feature of such taxis is that the meter is located outside the car on the passenger side; a passenger is expected to flick the lever down to engage the meter when he takes the taxi- see photo.
Another “classic car” (even older model) that one will see on the roads of India is the cream colour stately Hindustan Ambassador. The Ambassador is a more expensive class of taxis with bigger interior and is charged at a higher rate.