The maharajas of India were an eccentric bunch, and their fixation with extravagance was known around the world. The royal families in India loved indulging in the finest food, architecture, jewellery and, of course, automobiles. The most favoured cars of the maharajas in India were Rolls-Royces, cars that exuberated finesse and luxury even in the days gone by. According to estimates, on an average, each maharaja owned at least 3 to 5 Rolls-Royce cars in the days gone by. Before the First World War, more than 20,000 Rolls-Royces were built, 20% of which wound up on Indian shores.
One of the most fascinating purchases however, was that made by the Maharaja of Alwar in the 1920s. After being snubbed by a Rolls-Royce salesman in a Mayfair car showroom, the Maharaja promptly purchased seven cars, brought them all to India and used them as municipal garbage collection vehicles. Quoting the present-day Maharaja of Alwar, Jeetender Singh, “We were perhaps the only royal family that was allowed to buy any car except a Rolls-Royce. We have numerous vintage cars but not a single Rolls.” The new world will never see a Rolls-Royce being used to collect garbage ever again though. The trend seems to have died away with the old maharajas of India.
[Via – Telegraph]