One of the world’s oldest cars that could be worth millions has been snapped up for a few hundred euros after it was found gathering dust in a garage in Germany.
The discovery of the vehicle, believed to be at least 130 years old, took place in the German city of Leipzig, which is located in the eastern German state of Saxony, when an unnamed 86-year-old pensioner decided it was time to get rid of her dead husband’s old things.
Before anyone realised that it could be worth millions, it was snapped up for few hundred euros by the ‘Ost Klassiker Klub’ (‘East Classic Club’), a classic vehicle collectors’ association located in the village of Wolkramshausen in the central German state of Thuringia, according to German daily Bild.
The club’s chairman, Hubert Rein, 69, is quoted as saying: “She wanted to get rid of her deceased husband’s old things from her villa, but unfortunately couldn’t say anything about the car.”
The ‘car’ is actually more a tricycle, with a single wheel at the front, but experts at the annual classic ‘Concours d’Elegance’ car fair that took place in Schwetzingen from 3rd to 5th September assessed the vehicle and determined that it is at least 130 years old, with all its original parts, and it is in fact a more sophisticated machine than the world’s first production automobile, the ‘Benz Patent Motor Car Number 1’ (1885).
Rein has not ruled out that it could be the world’s oldest car, even older than the first Benz. He said: “Not excluded. Benz was already working with metal, building a frame out of steel tubes. Our model consists largely of a wooden body, spokes and the sprung seat.”
The vehicle does not have a number plate and is lacking a serial number too, with the experts of the opinion that it was probably built as “a prototype” but it is currently unclear who designed it and put it together.
They suspect it could be linked to Opel designer Friedrich Lutzmann in Dessau, a city located in the German state of Saxony-Anhalt, because its green colour and yellow lines are reminiscent of products designed by the famous German inventor.
To solve the mystery, the association is planning to display the unique vehicle at the ‘Hugo Junkers’ technology museum in Dessau as of 7th November with the hope that local experts will be able to shed some light on its history.