CC Global: Berlin Curbside Classics

Spring is here, and that means that many gems kept hidden from view and protected from salt (not that it snows much anymore in Berlin…) are back out in the open. Or when have you last seen an IFA F8? Even though I am married to a women born in the German Democratic Republic, the vehicles built in that state are not my area of expertise – shame on me. From what I understand this is basically a DKW F8, a pre-war design from 1931.

After the war, many a car manufacturer was faced with the challenge that some of their production facilities were located in different sectors of a Germany newly divided. This was also  true for the Zwickau Audi factory which was now in the Russian sphere. And instead of producing Audis or DKWs, it was producing IFAs.

Everyone following? IFA stood for Industrieverband Fahrzeugbau, roughly translated as “industrial association of vehicle production”. IFA was formed in 1946 and was directly controlled by the authorities of the Soviet military administration and later the newly founded GDR.

There are books to write (and they have been written) on the complex history of car manufactuting behind the Iron Curtain. One interesting fact about the IFA F8: Its 20 hp two stroke engine was actually the basis for the design of the Trabant’s engine! But that’s another story altogether.

During one of my garage meditations, in the last corner of an otherwise completely empty lower level floor, I came across this FIAT 130 Coupe. A beautiful Pininfarina built design!


No, I don’t regularly see Borgward Isabella coupes passing by during my lunch break.

Yes, this is a first generation Honda Prelude convertible.

No, these were not offered by the factory. I have two different sources claiming 50 or 147 were made by a company called Solaire based in Santa Ana, CA. Anyone know anything about this?

Paul has probably written everything there is to know about these. Interesting fact: I saw this in the former American sector of Berlin.

Every journey must come to an end.

Although seeing how this is a true 20V quattro, it’s probably worth it putting it back into shape.

If those last two images made you cry (like they would make me), this is to make you feel better: The first S2 on the road that I have seen in a decade.

And if you still haven’t gotten enough of that five cylinder AWD melody, there you go!

Maybe the most overlooked Volvo ever.

The Sierras, particularly those early ones, have really been growing on me. This one was parked right in front of my house!

And it’s a diesel no less!

I’ll take you for a delicious Berlin Currywurst mit Pommes und ein Bier if you can identify the model year!