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Egypt collector saves hundreds of classic cars

CAIRO (AP) — The earlier usually collides with the existing in Cairo, with site visitors snarling subsequent to historical sites.

Automobiles in the metropolis can take a beating — involving soaring temperatures, insidious desert dust and the crowded streets. Typical types are not uncommon, but they generally languish in dusty alleys or garages. One male, however, has decided to check out to protect a slice of Egypt’s 4-wheeled historical past.

Car or truck collector Mohamed Wahdan says he has gathered more than 250 classic, antique and classic cars and trucks. Most of them he found inside the nation.

A fleet of this dimension would rank him among the the world’s top basic car collectors. Gurus normally classify autos as classic, antique or basic depending on their 12 months of output.


The 52-calendar year-aged Wahdan operates a vacationer firm taking website visitors to Egypt’s famous landmarks. But he’s devoted to his pastime. He owns various distinctive garages to retain all of them, and employs a whole time staff of mechanics for maintenance.

He says one particular of the problems is in obtaining the automobiles license plates. Government personnel typically are not confident how to classify them.

Wahdan’s oldest, a 1924 Product T Ford that belonged to Egypt’s final monarch, King Farouk, is a museum piece, entire with a velvet rope to mark its parking place in his garage.

The country’s layered background will make it a treasure trove for antiques. Egypt, a previous British protectorate, was a desired destination for Europeans in the late 19th Century and the 1st 50 % of the 20th century. Italian, Greek, and Jewish communities at the time flourished in Cairo and the Mediterranean city of Alexandria. Its historic marketplaces, or souqs, provide many reminders of occasions long gone by, replicas and genuine.

Wahdan has gathered lots of of them. Rotary-dial telephones, gramophones, and outdated newspapers and stamps also fascinate him.

Not long ago, his automobiles have also built a title for them selves, with 1 appearing in a Television set sequence established in the 1930s. He’s seen that curiosity in car amassing is escalating between Egyptians, as more flock to vintage car displays where his autos are exhibited.

A single of his dearest merchandise is his initial obtain, a 1970s Mercedes. Like his other vehicles, he doesn’t push it normally. But he says he would hardly ever market any of his assortment.

“Anyone who is passionate about those people automobiles is unable to do with out them,” he explained.