Would you buy a car whose prototype once turned soggy when left out in the rain? Yeah, I agree. I would, too. But unfortunately you can’t buy the East German Trabant (Satellite) anymore. Not new, anyway. They haven’t been built since 1991 for some strange reason. Und das ist gut so (and that’s a good thing).

But there are still die-hard “Trabi” fans everywhere. You can even go on a “Trabi Safari” through old “East Berlin” these days, for crying out loud. And to make matters even worse, the Trabantistas are getting all emotional these days about the car’s upcoming 50th birthday celebration(s), although, just between you and me, most of these cars look quite a bit older.

The Trabant was supposed to be the GDR’s answer to the Volkswagen Beetle, of course. But all it really did was raise a whole lot of other questions. Like why does the damned thing always make that “dang, dang, dang” noise? And how come it won’t ever go any faster than 56mph?

These are questions that we will never know the answers to, as the Trabi isn’t talking. It will take its sordid little secrets with it to the grave one day, someday, a long, long time from now, in a Ford Galaxy far, far away.

Come visit me at Observing Hermann…

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