A Tatra T87 History Lesson From Professor Leno

What has a rear-mounted, air-cooled V8, was made in Czechoslovakia, and had a reputation for killing Nazis? That's right, the Tatra! This example is a 1938 Tatra T87, owned and operated by none other than self-proclaimed member of the "more money than brains" club, Jay Leno. And if it that wasn't impressive enough,… » 7/22/08 6:40pm 7/22/08 6:40pm

1937 Tatra T77

The Tatra T77, with its air-cooled V8 and slippery-even-by-2008-standards drag coefficient of 0.212, made just about everything else on the road in the mid-1930s seem like a wooden-wheeled goat cart by comparison. This brochure for the '37 model, aimed at German buyers, was perhaps too effective, with the Germans… » 4/14/08 2:00pm 4/14/08 2:00pm

Tatra CEO Plans To Make Retro-Styled Machines

We all thought the Tatra-based Faurecio design study was pretty cool, but what about the real thing? Tatra is still in business, but these days they make only big trucks. However, our Corvette-importin', Tatra 603 road-testin' friend in the Czech Republic, BobAsh, informs us that car freaks in the CR are in a frenzy… » 4/03/08 7:30am 4/03/08 7:30am

Dieter Lets Us Peek Behind the Barn Door

A man like Dieter is never content with just one barn full of cars and tools and gadgets. Less than a kilometer away from his shop, Dieter has his treasure barn. From the road it's so unassuming that you'd never know it could contain an 850Ci and a 440 Duster. In addition to those, there's at least an ancient Tatra, a… » 12/26/07 1:00pm 12/26/07 1:00pm

Old Media Discovers The Loverman!

As Los Jalops toil away, feeding our content into this series of tubes, we sometimes feel neglected by the ink-stained wretches who, like, do newspapers. But no more! First Señor Bumbeck makes the Los Angeles Times, and now Herr Loverman, our resident Tatra Faurecia expert, is getting quoted in the Holland (Michigan) » 11/21/07 3:15pm 11/21/07 3:15pm

Commenter of the Day: French Tatra > LA Auto Show Edition

Crazy, we know it, but at a massive international auto show where the biggest true reveals are a Dodge crossover and hybrid pickup trucks, it becomes possible for a 35-year-old French/Czech mashup to steal our heart. And judging by your comments, the same goes for you all. Of course, this shared sentiment got us… » 11/15/07 6:00pm 11/15/07 6:00pm

LA Auto Show: Faurecia Press Kit

Who do we love? Faurecia! Why do we love them? Because they are French and they took a 1972 Tatra, gutted the innards, ripped the engine out of the butt and created one of the most striking vehicles here at the LA Auto Show. Both inside and out. And of course, Davey and I are convinced that Faurecia's been listening… » 11/15/07 3:15pm 11/15/07 3:15pm

LA Auto Show: A French Tatra called Faurecia

Cars like this make me stop and think. I mean, either Jalopnik is sending out strange vibrations, or there are other people in the world who think the only thing better than a Czech-built Tatra is a French-built one. Well, here's the rub — it's not actually a production vehicle. The Faurecia is a design study. And… » 11/14/07 6:45pm 11/14/07 6:45pm

Engine Swap of the Day: Tatra and Audi V8s In Škoda Felicia

I've been making inquiries of our Czech friend BobAsh about the possibility of obtaining a Tatra V8 and transaxle from his homeland, thinking it might be fun to do a Tatra-engined VW Squareback as my personal Hell Project. He suggested I check out what some Czech madman did with a late-50s Škoda Felicia: first, a… » 11/13/07 12:45pm 11/13/07 12:45pm

BobAsh Road Tests the 1965 Tatra 603

Apparently, it wasn't enough for our Coronet 440-drivin' Czech friend BobAsh to tip us off about some vintage Tatra hoonage or help us out with a Czech Project Car Hell. Now he's gone and found a beautifully restored, Communist-bureaucrat-spec '65 Tatra 603 sedan, shot a ton of quality photographs, and then… » 10/29/07 11:30am 10/29/07 11:30am

Tatra-Land USA!

Since several of Los Jalopniks are now frantically scouring all potential North American Tatra sources in hopes of obtaining a fixer-upper example of our favorite air-cooled V8 Czech car, it was inevitable that we'd stumble across Dr. Nick's "Tatraplan" site. Sadly, all it has accomplished is to make us realize that… » 10/03/07 11:00am 10/03/07 11:00am

Project Car Hell, Czech Edition: Tatra or Skoda?

We've received some great tips for Project Car Hell, but tipster Bobash takes it to a whole new level with these finds. After watching the excellent Czech-hoonage Tatra promotional film, Happy Journeys, he found both a Tatra 603 and a cop-style Skoda 1201. Not only that, he did the translation, provided all the… » 9/27/07 5:00pm 9/27/07 5:00pm

Engine Geeks, Worship At The Tatra Altar!

An air-cooled hemi-head V8 is always worthy of our drool, and we've dug up a video of a stand-mounted Tatra 603 V8 in captivity. Check out the compact size and that ingenious cooling-fan design. Hey, how about one of these in a Skoda? » 9/10/07 3:00pm 9/10/07 3:00pm

Vintage Tatra 603 Hoonage!

So when you're driving behind the Iron Curtain with an air-cooled V8 mounted in the rear, what do you do? Why, you hoon it up, of course! You get sideways on the highway, blast through charming little towns at maniacal speeds, get airborne going over hilltops, and then do some off-roading, all with Johnny Law on… » 9/10/07 11:00am 9/10/07 11:00am

Ass-Engined Kafka Car Could Be Yours!


So what kind of wrong, wrong person would disapprove of a car with a rear-mounted 2.5-liter flathead hemi V8 engine? An air-cooled hemi V8, even! This may well be the raddest Iron Curtain car ever, and that's including the ZIS 112! We're currently engaged in frantic lobbying to somehow make Gawker buy us this Tatra… » 9/07/07 3:15pm 9/07/07 3:15pm

Yes! The Official Tatra Website!

We're not exactly why we're so stoked that we found this. But we're happy as clams to have found it. It being the official homepage of Czech truck manufacturer Tatra. Of course, Tatra used to make totally rad, weird cars that were favored by Nazis during the Second World War. They also used to die in them fairly… » 11/16/06 11:00pm 11/16/06 11:00pm

You Meet the Looniest People on a Tatra

Andy Takakjian is a lunatic. He is also president of the Los Feliz Lions Club and inventor of the Starion A6M7. And frankly, this is the sort of vehicle that only an Angeleno Lions Club president could come up with. The AK750, the world's only Tatra motorcycle. Except that it's not. It's actually (shhhh) a Honda… » 6/15/06 3:35am 6/15/06 3:35am