Monday, 5 March 2012

Wartburg 353W

The Wartburg 353W doesn't have electric windows or air conditioning. There's no mp3 player or sat-nav, no clever differential or Top Trumps-winning power figures. What it does have is a one-litre, two-stroke, triple-cylinder engine; this mighty 1-2-3 primarily powered the East German police force, given that it could take a decade or so for the average citizen to get hold of a new one. They're basic as hell because, well, with a ten year waiting list you really don't need to give anything away. And as you can see they tend to be cherished and looked after, even now, representing a significant achievement for whoever bought it in the first place.
Click here to see a 353 examined in a way that has never been common for the model: as a piece of art.
Add a furry-lapelled overcoat, an austere crust of bread and a general sense of political unease and the picture is complete.

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