I would assume that the car I want to feature now is unique in Europe. You see a #Premier #118NE from Indian production. Indian car production comes to the fore above all when Indian car companies swallow up European car companies. The #Hindustan #Ambassador, based on the #Morris #Oxford, is particularly well known. Less well-known are the attempts to establish the #Rover #SD1 as #Standard 2000 on the Indian market. Since 1947 the Premier Ltd. in Mumbai mainly built trucks but had a big hit with the Fiat 1100 licensed Premier #Padmini, which was built from 1974 to 2000, and for a long time was widely used as a #taxi in India. About the bigger brother, the 118NE, is less known.
This is a further Knock-Off of the iconic #Fiat #124. Perhaps the most agricultural variant. A closer look reveals that the 118NE is based on the facelifted #Seat 124. I suspect that the tooling for the Seat 124 was simply shipped to India. However, Premier only used the shell – technically they used the A12 engine from Nissan including the powertrain. The NE allegedly stands for Nissan Engine.
That was probably already the best thing about the whole car. The built quality was criminally tacky, indicated at the sharp edges of sheet metal or the rather cheap interior. The first cars must have been built between 1985 and 1987. Against the cheaper and better #Maruti 800, a version of the #Suzuki #Alto, the 188NE had little to oppose. The production ended in 2001 – not without a story to be told here. The question is, how the hell did a 118NE get to the Czech Republic? In the early 1990s a Czech importer had the idea of bringing a cheap car onto the market – the Premier 118NE. The car was presented at the 1992 Auto Show. Three problems arose directly. First: the car was shown somewhere in the entrance area, second: it was a right-hand drive and third: the questionable quality was visible at first sight. In addition, after the show surfaced another problem – missing homologation, of which the importer would not ask. The car in the picture finally went into private hands, where it was converted to a left-hand drive. I would like to thank the Retroautomusezum for opening the bonnet for me!