A Zsiguli police car in Baranya county is quite the attraction. The owner, a resident of Pécs, fell in love with this car and turned it into a real gem.
Gábor Hetesi repairs the car with the help of his daughter, Júlia. – writes pecsaktual.hu. The Hungarian electrical engineer worked on the car for months to turn it into a replica of an old police car of the 1980s. The Zsiguli is rare and unique because the company changed the name to Lada, making this car from 1980 one of the last Zsiguli cars. Now the police car has become a big attraction in Hungary.
Lada cars were the first modern police cars and served for three decades. Before these cars, Mosykvics, Pobjeda, and Warszawa were used.
Zsiguli cars were fabricated at Togliatti, a factory the size of a city. On April 19 1970, the first six Zsiguli cars were made. The cars soon appeared in socialist countries, including Hungary, where the police used them – writes police.hu.
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The Hungarian state first ordered 1,200 cubic centimetres blue Zsiguli cars in 1972. The first cars had 60 horsepower, then in 1974, the 1300 and 21011 models had 67 horsepower. The factory made vehicles for the Soviet police and the Committee for State Security (KGB) had 1500 cubic centimetres. Then 1600 cubic centimetres cars were assembled.
The cars, however, did not last long. After driving 100-120 thousand kilometres, severe problems occured after 2-4 years of being in service. Fixing them was not a wise decision economically. Thus the cars were sold or went out of service.
Gábor has loved veteran cars since he was a kid. He saved his Zsiguli from a garage and made it into a police car. The vehicle is named Zsiga, and it even showed up in a movie.
The Hungarian man collected everything for the car, but it took months. He paid attention to every little detail. The car needs 8 litres of petrol to be used. “In my opinion, if a car is well maintained, then comfort features like air conditioning, for example, are not missing” – Gábor says. He passed down his admiration of cars to his daughter. According to him, when Júlia got her first doll, she put it on the ground. Now she is learning how to repair cars and helps her dad.
Tibor Cservölgyi is another owner of old cars. Now his vehicles look exactly like the old police cars after he repaired them. The cars are featured at open days at the police, exhibitions, movies, but the cars are also present at bachelor and bachelorette parties and even weddings.
People are happy to see the Zsiguli, and this is one of the reasons the father and daughter fix the car and make it look better with such passion and care. The other reason is that they want to save the technical relics for the future.
Now Zsiguli police cars are an exciting piece of history. He first bought a 1982 Zsiguli, used between 1976 and 1988 by the Hungarian police. The car was used by police officers, who went to sites of accidents, but officers accompanied by dogs also rode these cars. Then he bought another car. The second car Tibor bought had an indirect connection to the police. The son of a colleague drove the car.
Source: pecsaktual.hu, police.hu
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