Saturday, November 28, 2015

Leonid Brezhnev’s GAZ-13 “Chaika” (Part 1)

When, in 1971, Leonid Brezhnev visited Soviet Armenia, he couldn’t have imagined that in some two years his personal vehicle, the GAZ-13 “Chaika” built by special order of the government, would have ended up in Armenia.

The story began in 1964, when Leonid Brezhnev was elected as General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. In addition to his socialist fraternal kisses and bushy eyebrows, Brezhnev was also famed for his incredibly large collection of personal cars. Almost every car from Brezhnev’s collection is shrouded in legends and stories. One of those legends recounts a story of how in 1965, the Gorky Automobile Plant received a special government order to build a GAZ-13 “Chaika”, which was to be used by the leader on the territory of the governmental summer cottages in Yalta. This vehicle with a chassis serial number N1086 was virtually indistinguishable from standard samples of the GAZ-13- the only specific feature of the leader’s car was its light grey color (with rare exceptions, all “Chaikas” were painted in black color).
To be continued…

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

The Unusual Car of the Unusual Owners: Chrysler Imperial (Part 2)

The car was immediately purchased by the great Soviet composer Arno Babajanyan. The transport to Yerevan was arranged by someone named Vanik from Silachi (there is such a district in Yerevan).Throughout the years of service to the composer, the car was never used for the intended purpose.

Being a creative individual, Babajanyan was not a huge fan of technological progress, he was rather fascinated by the original shapes and incomparable design of this car. As for the technical side, it always remained in the background for the great maestro.

Arno Babajanyan passed away on 11 November 1983 at age 62. The story of this car could have ended with the death of the maestro, if it hadn’t been put up for sale again after 32 years. This time the owner of this magic car is our team. The car is currently is in our garage and needs undergoing extensive restoration work, which will be implemented in the near future.