I've ridden in one of these. Our college orchestra's Eastern European tour included a sojourn in the soon-to-be Czech Republic. I remember my host family arriving in this clattering, plastic car, considerably noisier than my neighbor's John Deere rider mower. Now, according to The Guardian, a company wants to perpertrate this conveyance on Africa, formerly known as the Trabant, and dub it the "AfriCar". Its chalky, slightly fibrous and sun-bleached red finish left an impression, but I didn't realize that its body is made from "a blend of phenol [carbolic acid] and compressed cotton named Duroplast", or that its rubber insulation is "prone to melting and 'leaking like a sieve'". The advantage is that it's "unbreakable", and, assuming the impossible happens, "the car was designed for 'any roadside mechanic to fix'".
Who needs a Hummer?Posted by erich at May 07, 2003 01:17 PM