History and histories

Uber alles

Photo Credit: Porsche, BMW, Volkswagen, Mercedes-Benz, Audi, Opel, Wheelsage

To understand just how much German pride was able to put behind it the memory of a country reduced to rubble after being defeated in the war, just look at three cars destined to enter the history books: the tiny Porsche Speedster, the BMW 507 and the Mercedes 300SL Roadster. 

1955 Porsche Speedster
The tiny 1955 Porsche Speedster was a dream for everyone

The established quality of Made in Germany combined with the unrivalled progress in aviation technology and construction made during the conflict, transformed these three stunning automobiles into a watershed moment for the German car industry. All three, in fact, were built in-house, their shapes wholly dependent on the underlying mechanics. A result that needs no additional comment.

1955 for BMW 507
The 1955 for BMW 507 was a declaration of intent: one day, once the crisis of the war is over, we will be an exclusive brand

But the story does not stop there: Audi was soon to arrive as well as the European subsidiary of GM, Opel, which wanted a piece of the action.

Not everything was beautiful though: how can we forget the curious, half-hearted attempt at the Volkswagen-Porsche? 

The story of German spiders is an austere one that is full of pride with one certainty: they will continue to create them. The road ahead is as straight as an arrow.

VW Karmann
Volkswagen mechanics dressed by Karmann in the rare open version from 1957
957 300 SL Roadster
The 1957 300 SL Roadster: a queen. It maintained the magnificent and harmonious design of the closed-top version but introduced more elegance and comfort
Volkswagen Porsche 914
The unlucky experiment of the Volkswagen Porsche 914 from 1969. It was difficult to unite two very different brands
Mercedes SLK
Mercedes innovated the spider concept by introducing the folding hard roof in 1996 with the SLK
Audi TT 1998
German style purity and simplicity. This is the Audi TT from 1998
2000 BMW Z8
With its powerful M5-derived V10, the 2000 BMW Z8 was the modern interpretation of the famous 507
2001 Opel Speedster
Very light like the Lotus Elise from which it derives, the 2001 Opel Speedster guaranteed certain emotions and German quality