There was a time when the roads of Mumbai were full of these taxis. In fact, I have always visualised the older Mumbai with these yellow and black cars, known as the Premier Padmini.
The iconic taxis will soon not be seen anymore on the roads of Mumbai.
According to reports, with their production having stopped in 2000, less than 50 of them remain in the city. They’ll stop plying on Mumbai roads altogether by June 2020.
An indigenous version of the Fiat 1100, the car was known as Premier President before getting the name, Premier Padmini.
Back in the 1960s, the authorities in Mumbai chose the Fiat 1100 as taxi, instead of the Ambassador which were quite popular in Delhi and Kolkata.
Reminiscing the good times, drivers and passengers talked about the comfortable rides these taxis offered to them. Talking to TOI, one taxi driver said:
“We always got a word of praise from commuters who found these cabs comfortable in terms of good leg space, suspension and also ride quality.”
While the Premier Padmini served its commuters quite efficiently, it gave to new taxis like Santro, Wagon R, etc. after being phased out gradually.
Good bye Padmini! You have been Mumbai’s identity for decades.