Trabant History

From the late '50s
From the late '50s a vehicle, a personal carrier emerged from the Eastern part of Germany which became the symbol of Eastern transportation. That's the Trabant.This car wasn't destined to be a car. In the '50s, when cheap transportation was all the rage throughout Europe and small motorcycles, mopeds were the only means of transport, another idea existed for an intermediate vehicle between the car and the motorbike. Call it bubble-car, microcar, whatever - You'll get the impression. The Trabant, and its forerunner, the AWZ P70 were originally intended to be representatives of this intermediate category: 2+2 seater vehicle with a small, easy-to-repair engine, lightweight construction with a little boot at the back. It was to be the perfect means of transportation for the whole family. By the early 1960s the reasons which brought the Trabant to life, like shortage of steel, fuel, shortage of infrastructure disappeared in Western Europe. The situation also gradually changed in Eastern Europe, but political leaders behind the Iron Curtain reasoned that as it took years for an everyday workers to lay his/her hands on a new automobile there's precious little need to develop the concept further. Therefore the P60 and then its successor, the P601, better known as the Trabant were kept in production for decades. So the Trabant which was never planned to be a "normal" automobile evolved to look remotedly like one. But in theory it was still sitting between motorcycles and small cars.