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Spotted: plenty of variety in Berlin

June 9, 2023

Basically, in the Gespot section, we limit ourselves to Dutch spots. After all, as long as you have an eye for it, there is more than enough to see even in the Netherlands. Still, sometimes we make an exception. In Slovenia, for example, we already discovered a car brand unknown to us, and in Germany earlier this year we saw a very special Fiat 500. Once again this week we are looking abroad.

We were recently in Berlin to visit the Classic Remise. It is impressive how much beauty and exclusivity is there. Still, there is plenty of interesting things to see on four wheels on the streets of Berlin as well. So much so, in fact, that we are happy to devote an edition of the Gespot section to them. With some difficulty, we were able to limit ourselves to a few personal favorites of yours truly. From beautiful classics and youngtimers to current models not supplied in the Netherlands. Which one is your favorite?

Spotted: 1971 Ford Transit 100

We’ll just start in alphabetical order, with a beautiful Ford Transit 100 from facelift model year 1971. Not a camper van, ice cream truck or food truck for once, but a nice everyday passenger version. The Transit has H license plates, or German vintage license plates. To get one, a car must not only have been first registered at least 30 years ago, but also be in nice and original condition. This Transit more than meets all those requirements.

Spotted: 1985 Honda Civic

How often do you still see a Honda Civic from facelift model year 1985? Let alone in such an everyday version? Sadly, few examples of the once popular car remain. Like many Japanese, the model had a tendency to rust, and sportier models were often driven just a little too sporty… In addition, the model was never that much on the radar of old- and youngtimer enthusiasts, so it is still mainly the sportier and/or luxury models that remain. This one is a nice exception to that.

Spotted: 2022 Hyundai Staria Premium

The MPV segment may be terminal in Europe, but passenger vans are increasingly being turned into something fun. In any case, the new Volkswagen Multivan is different from the “standard passenger van. Hyundai is also getting back into the segment, introducing for the 2022 model year the striking Staria as the successor to what was with us the H300. Here we see the Staria Premium, the most luxurious passenger version. There are also a less luxurious passenger version and a van version.

The engine range (a 3.5-liter V6 gasoline engine or a 2.2-liter four-cylinder diesel) unfortunately renders the Hyundai Staria hopeless in the Netherlands. In Germany, the model does come officially. During our brief visit to Berlin, we encountered one other example, the less luxurious passenger version.

Spotted: 2020 Kia Rio X-Line

A Kia Rio X-Line from facelift model year 2020, but the Rio model for non-European markets. Nevertheless, a number of Eastern European countries do have this Rio instead of “our” model. It seems that in Ukraine, where this specimen comes from (Kiev region), they even have both variants. Or had, because the Ukrainian Kia website currently lists only the Ceed and Sportage.

Spotted: 1968 Oldsmobile Toronado

Look at that, just like that, a beautiful 1968 model year Oldsmobile Toronado is parked along the road. An iconic model and also special in technical terms, as one of the very few front-wheel-drive American cars of its time.

Spotted: 1971 Plymouth Fury Custom Suburban

A 1971 model year Plymouth Fury Custom Suburban. Nowadays the “suburbs” are full of SUVs and some minivans, but once the American model family drove a stylish wagon. Preferably a “full-size” model like this Plymouth. Then in a slightly different version. This one is no longer completely original, but certainly those wheels look very good on it as far as we are concerned.

Spotted: 2016 Renault Mégane Sedan

Did you know that the now outgoing generation Renault Mégane also came (and still comes) as a sedan? Here we see one from model year 2016. In Europe, the sedan version was delivered only in selected countries, mainly in Eastern and Southern Europe. This one comes from Poland (Poznań region) and there the sedan version is also officially listed in the price list.

Spotted: a row of Trabant 601s

A visit to Berlin is still not complete without seeing Trabants. However, those that remain are almost always part of a city tour and/or rental company. So did this row of Trabant 601s. The front one, belonging to the tour guide, is especially notable because it has apparently been converted to all-electric propulsion. The remaining Trabants still made the familiar rattling sound.

Spotted: 1981 Volkswagen Passat GL Hatchback

The liftback is still a fairly popular body shape (and even on the rise again in the fight for better aerodynamics), but current liftbacks tend to have a sedan- or coupe-SUV-like shape. Just about in the 1980s, these types of liftbacks were popular: a kind of cross between a sedan and station wagon. By the way, Volkswagen called the body shape of this Passat GL of model year 1981 a Hatchback. You really never see a Passat B2 like this anymore in the Netherlands, very nice spot. The Passat is registered in the Ulm/Donau region. Still, not really near Berlin.