Kubelwagen (1939/45) - Germany

{click here for larger image}

The Kubelwagen was the equivalent of the American Jeep during WWII. It was first designed by Dr. Ferdinand Porsche and by his son Ferry as a "buggy" for fun. With the war looming on the horizon, the "fun car" became a military vehicle.

The base is from the KDF (the future Volkswagen). Only the rear wheels are driven but the car is very light and behaves well in rough conditions.

One batch of Kubelwagens was supposed to have been shipped to the Russian front and another to North Africa. Ferry Porsche tells us in his book that because of a great deal of confusion, the cars manufactured for the cold climate (Russia) were shipped to Africa and, of course, the African cars were shipped to Russia!

Our Kubelwagen was manufactured in 1943 and was carefully restored in France right down to the blazon of Rommel - the palm trees - for the Afrika Korps. Its previous owner was a French farmer and collector and the car was driven in the open space of the countryside. When he retired and moved to a more populated region (the coast), he could not drive the car without being the target of generally mean remarks - SO years after the war, some people remembered the Kubelwagen. Finally, he sold the Kubelwagen and bought an American Jeep.

The Kubelwagen stands in our collection as an example of the creativity of Dr. Porsche. It also explains the exceptional robustness of the Volkswagen - the result of five years of production as a military vehicle.

The Volkswagen plant was in the English sector of Germany and the production of the civilian car arose due to the initiative of British officers. Many manufacturers who were offered the Volkswagen declined, seeing no future for the car. Thirty-five million of these cars were manufactured.



Email Webmaster