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AdBuzz LeadIn addition to being a great leader, Mr Jinnah (whose birthday will be celebrated on December 25) was a connoisseur of the finer things in life. He was always immaculately dressed and was especially fond of luxury cars. He owned several of these when he lived in Bombay, including a La Salle and an ivory coloured convertible Packard. When Mr Jinnah left for Karachi from Bombay, just days before Partition, his Packard was shipped to Karachi.

Aware of the busy official schedule that awaited him and the lack of official transport in the nascent state he had founded, Mr Jinnah sent word to Mirza Abol Hassan Ispahani (Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United States at the time) to purchase a Cadillac for him. The car was slated to arrive by the end of 1947, but due to various delays, it reached Karachi in early 1948. During this time, Mr Jinnah used his Packard.

The Cadillac was named after the French explorer and adventurer, Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac, and its tagline ‘Standard of the World’ was no exaggeration. These machines were smooth, powerful, comfortable and luxurious, and continuing that tradition, the 1947 Cadillac 75 series Limousine which Mr Jinnah drove in was the ultimate luxury automobile of the time and one of 300 limousines produced that year. With Fleetwood hand-built coachwork, a wheelbase in excess of 11 feet, and a top speed that exceeded 160 km/h, the car had a commanding presence. It was also probably the last car Mr Jinnah used, given that he passed away later that year.

Mr Jinnah’s Cadillac and Packard were restored a few years after his death and can be admired at the Museum in his mausoleum, where many of his personal items, including his furniture, clothes and crockery can be viewed, making the Museum well worth a visit – especially on Mr Jinnah’s birthday.

– Romano Karim Yusuf

First published in the Adbuzzzz Section of The DAWN National Weekend Advertiser on December 21, 2014.