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Trabant Turbo Quattro Is Not to Be Taken Lightly

The Trabant is a common sight in Germany even in this day and age. Over 3.7 million were produced from 1957 to 1991, but this isn’t your typical Trabi. The Western world laughed about the shortcomings of this appalling four-wheeled vestige of the Cold War, yet the joke is on us because the Trabi’s potential shouldn’t be taken lightly.
Trabant Turbo Quattro from Poland 31 photos
Trabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from PolandTrabant Turbo Quattro from Poland
Back when East Germany was as gray as a rain cloud, people could only wish for VEB Sachsenring to develop a go-faster version of the Trabant economy car. That didn’t happen, though, for obvious reasons: an economy car is just what the label says it is - cheap. Nothing more, nothing less.

The original 0.6-liter engine was replaced with a 1.1-liter unit in the latter life of the Trabant, yet the most powerful Trabi of them all developed 41 horsepower. That’s pedestrian if you compare it to the Trabant Turbo Quattro. According to Top Gear Poland, the owner bought the car you can admire in the photo gallery below 14 years ago. After he swapped the standard 1.1-liter for a 1.3, the owner then replaced it with a 1.6-liter powerplant with 16 valves at its disposal.

Then came a 2.0 GTI engine, and finally, a 1.8 turbocharged motor from an Audi TT was shoehorned under the hood of this Trabant a couple of years ago. A bit of elbow grease ramped the output of the 1.8-liter turbo from 225 to 270 PS, which is immense for a vehicle that is shorter than a Chevrolet Spark.

To harness all those ponies and the 369 Nm (272 lb-ft) of torque, the owner decided to take the quattro all-wheel drive system from the donor Audi TT then strap it to the chassis of this little Trabant. Other than the added traction, disc brakes were fitted on all four wheels, together with anti-lock brakes and ESP.

But the best thing about the Trabant Turbo Quattro is how quick the bugger is. 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) is doable in 4.5 seconds and the 200 km/h (124 mph) top end can be reached in 15.5 seconds. On an ending note, press play if you’re curious to hear this Trabi stretch its legs on the streets of Rzeszow, Poland.

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