A Chaika, which means gull, is a luxury automobile from the Soviet Union made by GAZ. The vehicle is one step down from the ZIL limousine.
Chaika production consisted of two generations. The mark 1 Chaika, the GAZ M13, was produced from 1959 to 1981,
and is the more famous and more numerous with more than 3,100 examples built during the 22 year production run.
The Chaika GAZ M13 was visually a near-clone of the 1955 Packard Patrician and Mercury,
with typical chrome-bedecked 1950s styling. The M13 was powered by a 195 horsepower 5.5L V8 and driven through a push-button automatic transmission of a similar design to the Chrysler TorqueFlite unit.
As a limousine-class car, Chaikas were available only to the Soviet government, and could not be purchased by the average citizens. Chaikas were one step down from the more prestigious ZIL limousines,
and were issued to top professionals, party officials, scientists, academics, and other VIPs. For their larger size and more powerful V8, Chaikas were also ordered in some quantity by the KGB. Nikita Khrushchev,
although entitled to a ZIL, was known to prefer Chaikas, and kept an M13 at his summer dacha. Top speed was 99 mph (158 km/h).