If you know about a two-stroke Trabant that’s daily-driven more far out than where I found this one, please prove me wrong. But for now, this mustard yellow wonder is claiming the title for The Most Remote Trabant On Earth.
When you have a Land Rover Defender, you can go further. In fact, with such a capable and good looking vehicle, it would be a straight up sin not to go as far as you can. So when we took the Defender on vacation last week, we decided to set up our tents at 64.885203, -24.044116, just by that tiny lighthouse on the western edge of Iceland:
Technically we didn’t drink rum at Europe’s most western point, because that would be Látrabjarg further up north. But it was as close as we could get.
On your way to what is known as Svörtuloft for its bigger, equally orange lighthouse, the last sign of civilization is a radio tower west of the small town of Hellissandur. I almost drove by it without taking a second look at a steady 55 mph, but instead, something I did not expect to see made me step on the brakes.
Screw reverse gear. I went running back to inspect the familiar, yet highly unlikely object in this windy corner of the world.
Check that out.
Pokahornið is an arts & crafts supply store in love with coffee, and as it turns out, the Trabant belongs to a chap called Búi Baldvinsson, a filmmaker of Hero Production from Reykjavik who believes it to be the only regularly driven 601 on the whole island. He got the car years ago from a woman who was moving away from Iceland.
Back in the day, lots of communist cars made it to Iceland, mostly because the Eastern countries liked to pay for herrings with anything they had on four wheels. Unsurprisingly, the Lada Niva has been a particular favorite of this fine nation, but most of those cars rusted away by now. During our 1,400 mile trip around the country, we only saw one, parked at a remote farm.
Búi says the Trabant is one his favorite cars, and he loves to drive it especially at winter time, when it’s snowing. As a Hungarian, I know how this makes sense.
As Búi demonstrates, it’s just the perfect snow car.