Another Barkas!

30 04 2018

So here is another Barkas, the East German equivalent to the West German Volkswagen bus. This one is an ex-ambulance I saw at the Berlin VW Bus festival 2014. The color is certainly not original, but the interior still was. The massive spot light on the ceiling in the back was actually still the light used if a medical operation had to happen in the back of the ambulance. This type of bus was built between 1961 and 1991, but with the plastic-y dashboard this one was probably one of the later, 1980ies models. A pretty amazing van.

Image_1

 

 





Barkas B1000 – The East German Kombi

14 04 2018

The Barkas B1000 was the East German answer to the West German Volkswagen bus. It was built from 1961 till 1991, just after the end of the German Democratic Republic, so similarly long as the T1 and T2 kombis (built in West Germany from 1950 to 1979). With the round overall body shape, the sliding door on the right side and the round head lights it comes with a similar face and set up as the T2 bay window bus. In contrast to the VW buses of the time it came with front wheel drive and had the engine in the front which (as the English Wikipedia entry points out) made it easier to load and allowed more body configurations. For most of its production the engine was a 45 horsepower three cylinder, two stroke motor. Amazingly, the overall production numbers over 30 years were just below 180.000, whereas the VW T1 split-window bus was manufactured 1.5 million times (1950-1967), followed by 3.3 million T2 bay window buses (1967-1979). Nowadays, 27 years after the end of production, these Barkas buses have become a rare view on the road. I stumbled over the one below in Berlin in Dec 2017. Good to see that some of them are being kept alive!

Image_9small

Image_10small