Monday, October 25, 2010
TRABANT "The Commie Car"...... available in coupe, sedan or station wagon was produced in Communist East Germany starting in the 1950's
Engine: 2 stroke / 2 cylinder
H.P.: early models - 18 hp
Top speed: didn't exist
0-60: hasn't happened yet.
-4 persons and a very small dog
-or 1 large dog and 3 persons
-or 2 persons if the dog is driving
Later models used the Wankle rotary engine.
Bodies were wood framed with a plastic/cardboard-like composite skin. You won't find a rusted Trabant, but rumor has it that pigs acquired a taste for the material and some of the cars met their demise in this manner. "Honey...the pigs just ate the car".
Customers waited on lists up to a year long to buy one and about 3 million were produced. A surprising number of Trabants are still used as chief transportation by many Hungarians today. Trabants have definately become a symbol of Hungary's by-gone era.
With the fall of the wall, demand for the government monopoly produced car evaporated. The company failed along with the political regime. The people now had a choice and that choice was not for a Trabant. Many Trabants were abandon by fleeing emigrants and could be had for free to those who remained.
Although still cheap today, they are acquiring their own collector status.
They are smokey.... they are stinky.... they are slow, but should you pass one on the highway, smile....snikker if you must....but give a little salute; I think the little car deserves it.