Interesting Facts About Parsi Community & Their Endless Affair with Cars!

If you are a Bollywood fanatic, you will probably remember the rib-tickling scenes portrayed by the vintage car-loving character, Nari Contractor, from the movie Dhamaal. In the film, he was often shown treating his car as his child – treating it with the utmost care, cleaning it until it shone, and inspecting even the smallest scratch with a magnifying lens! Of course, all this stems from the popular notion is that nobody loves their cars the way Parsis do. If you do belong to the community or know someone who does, you will most likely agree with the statement.

Today, on August 16, we are celebrating Navroz or Parsi New Year, marking the beginning of the Iranian calendar. And there’s no better way to celebrate than discussing the love that the community has for its cars. So, when and how did this love affair with cars begin? And what are some of the defining traits of this unique relationship they share? Read on to #DiscoverMore about this profound love for cars.

The History & Cultural Connect

When India was first introduced to motor cars through exports in the early 20th century, some of the first buyers were from the Parsi community. Back in the day, apart from being considered a luxury, cars were considered complicated machines that required a lot of attention. And the Parsi community seemed to be committed to caring for their prized possessions. This zeal with which they care for their cars may have eventually become an inherent part of their behaviour.

Today, the community’s art of car care and maintenance is not only well known but also appreciated by the motor and resale industry. In fact, you would often find cars pre-owned by Parsis being sold at higher resale value for their mint condition.

A Member of the Family

It might sound a little cliche, but don’t be surprised if you are being introduced to ‘mora deengra’ (my boy), and it turns out to be a gleaming car! It isn’t unusual for some Parsis to treat their cars like they do their family. And why not? Cars can be complex, they need special care and attention, and it often takes time to build a comfortable relationship with a car. Some people even give their cars names; it’s something that many people from across the world have started to do.

Ultra-Clean and Shiny Cars

Many car owners will have just a cloth or some wet wipes in the glove compartment to wipe the dashboard and windshield, and perhaps a standard solution to wash their cars. Or they might leave the cleaning and polishing up to the experts, and services like Dial-A-Ford certainly make this easier. But a Parsi household that owns a car is most likely to have a wide range of cleaning tools at its disposal. From basics to advanced toolkits and dedicated cleaning materials, car maintenance and care are taken quite seriously.

A Part of Celebrations

Birthday celebrations are not restricted to people and might even include the exact date when their cars were bought. Even on special events and festivals, like Navroz, you may find a garland strung across the bumper or bonnet of the car. Just as family members dress on special days, so does a Parsi car!

The image of a Parsi gentleman busy polishing his car or inspecting car corners to make sure everything is the way it should be has been a part of popular culture for decades. But it might not be so far-fetched when you think of how the community worships and cares for their cars, no matter how old or what model it is. In fact, you might also find that some of the oldest or most vintage cars in India are still in top-notch condition, courtesy – Parsis. And it’s a love that should be celebrated; after all, cars are some of the most prized possessions.

Ford wishes a Navroz Mubaraq!