Hitler, the car dealer...

Discussions on the propaganda, architecture and culture in the Third Reich.
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ghostsoldier
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Hitler, the car dealer...

Post by ghostsoldier » 18 Jun 2008 17:19

"Even God cannot change the past. "
-Agathon (448 BC - 400 BC)

Jurgen Wullenwever
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Re: Hitler, the car dealer...

Post by Jurgen Wullenwever » 18 Jun 2008 18:17

Tracy Dove wrote: The only other Hitler car was owned by a Swedish businessman and amateur Nazi memorabilia collector who was showing the car in Las Vegas a few years ago. But the FBI became interested once it was revealed that the collector was a closet Fascist and held parties where they ate birthday cakes in the shape and color of Swastikas, but he died in 2002 without any progress made in the case against him. A reporter recently rung up the museum in Las Vegas, and conspiracy theorists will be happy to know that the car has disappeared without a trace.
Who was this Swedish businessman? I have never heard this story, and it sounds much peculiar.

http://uspolitics.einnews.com/article.php?nid=490856

jeffhan373
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Re: Hitler, the car dealer...

Post by jeffhan373 » 18 Jun 2008 20:50

Wasn't this the car that was once exhibited in Springfield? It was inadvertently destroyed, prompting the comment "What did Hitler ever do to you?" According to Bart Simpson, who was responsible for its destruction, it was Fuehrer-iffic.

Vitesse
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Re: Hitler, the car dealer...

Post by Vitesse » 19 Jun 2008 12:36

There are a lot of things which don't add up here, but here are three to start with:

1 Why would Hitler present a car to the King of Nepal, a country which had been a British ally since the Gurkha Wars of 1814-16 and had declared its support for the Allies as early as September 1939?

2 The ruling house of Nepal was strongly pro-British, so why would they accept a gift from Hitler? In 1940 "The Times" records a number of gifts from Nepal to the Viceroy's War Purposes Fund, an increase in Gurkha forces, and even a gift of Rs 25000 (£1875) specifically for the relief of bombed-out families in London's East End. The Viceroy reported in November 1940 that relations with Nepal were "most cordial" and thanked the Nepalese PM for sending two extra Gurkha Brigades and for his generous financial support.

3 How would the car get to Nepal in 1940? The article says it was transported "from Nepal's southern plains to the capital city", which would indicate it had come via India. The Indians would hardly be likely to allow a gift-wrapped Merc with a label saying "Best wishes from Adolf" on it into the country, let alone all the way to Nepal!

At a guess, this was probably a car left behind by a German diplomat or businessman who was either evacuated or interned in 1939 - or perhaps even from a Mercedes-Benz agency in India. It was considered very unpatriotic to drive a German car, so what better way to thank the Nepalese Royal Family than to give them a very good car which nobody in India wanted and had cost the Viceroy nothing?

Vitesse
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Re: Hitler, the car dealer...

Post by Vitesse » 19 Jun 2008 14:48

I had a bit of time on my hands so I tried hunting down this story: it seems to be sourced to one news story published in the newspaper Rising Nepal, back in 2002. Note that it has all the elements included in the report in The Independent and - now - countless other online news outlets around the world.
http://peacebuilding.blogspot.com/2002_ ... chive.html

Thursday, October 03, 2002
Hitler's car gift to Nepal gathers dust

A 1939 Mercedes Benz presented by Adolf Hitler to late King Tribhuvan is rusting at an engineering college in the capital Kathmandu because of a lack of funds to repair it, the Rising Nepal said.

The car given to by the German Nazi leader is one of only three of its kind still remaining in the world. It was manually carried by labourers from the southern plains to Kathmandu valley in 1940 were no roads into the valley.

King Tribhuvan, the grandfather of King Gyanendra, died in the 1950s. "Its doors are coming off, the inside of the bonnet is rusting and seats are torn," the newspaper said.

Biswanath Khanal, chief of the Thapathali Engineering Campus where the vintage car is parked, told Reuters: "We have not been able to recondition the car and run it now for the lack of funds."

He said $5,500 (3,500 pounds) was needed to replace old parts in the vehicle which was being used as a model to train mechanics. "We are already working on a very low budget and don't have that amount for the car," Khanal said.

A former Nepali prime minister once offered to buy the car, but the college had no ownership documents to sell the vehicle, the Rising Nepal said. Nepal now has more than 15,000 kilometres (9,375 miles) of roads criss-crossing the nation. (Reuters)
Googling "Biswanath Khanal" will bring up at least five other very similar versions, mostly on Asian news sites.

One blogger even has two more alleged pictures of the car. Copyright information on one led me to the National Geographic website, where it turned out the picture was taken in 1948. Not that it made much difference anyway, because it was a completely different model of Mercedes-Benz.

http://photography.nationalgeographic.c ... image.html

The second picture wasn't even a Mercedes ... :roll:

http://nimalama.files.wordpress.com/200 ... 36e91f.jpg

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Axmann
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Re: Hitler, the car dealer...

Post by Axmann » 20 Jun 2008 02:48

The car in the National Geographic image appears to be a W138 260D, the first diesel production passenger car. The car in the Independent story appears to be an open model 230/320 series, probably the latter but indeterminant - however not the same car as in the National Geographic image. When I first read this story I imagine a fancy K series car - not to be.

This crazy story by "Tracy Dove" I have never seen before. I suspect this author is hardly a credible voice on the subject.

Vitesse
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Re: Hitler, the car dealer...

Post by Vitesse » 20 Jun 2008 23:48

Thanks, Axmann. I was beginning to think I was the only person in the entire world who thought this story was nothing more than bollocks. I agree on both your vehicle IDs: the NG picture is definitely a 260D and the Kathmandu car is almost certainly a 320.

For those not versed in motoring history, a Mercedes Benz 320 was by no means a prestige vehicle in the way a Rolls Royce, Cadillac, Cord or Hispano Suiza was: in Britain in the 1930s the equivalent would have been something like an Armstrong Siddeley or a big Wolseley; in America a Lincoln or a Studebaker.

Even assuming that Hitler ever did present a car to the King of Nepal - which I sincerely doubt - a 320 would have been no more than a bauble, scarcely worthy of His Majesty's attention. Axmann mentioned K series cars: the king would have merited nothing less than a K770 "Grosser Mercedes": the car in the picture is definitely not one of those!

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Axmann
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Re: Hitler, the car dealer...

Post by Axmann » 22 Jun 2008 18:14

Are there more photos of this car in Nepal?

I suspect it is a car similar to the image I have attached. This car is a 320.

I suspect this car was abandoned or given as a gift by someone who perhaps left this area at the outbreak of war.
Vitesse wrote:Thanks, Axmann. I was beginning to think I was the only person in the entire world who thought this story was nothing more than bollocks. I agree on both your vehicle IDs: the NG picture is definitely a 260D and the Kathmandu car is almost certainly a 320.

For those not versed in motoring history, a Mercedes Benz 320 was by no means a prestige vehicle in the way a Rolls Royce, Cadillac, Cord or Hispano Suiza was: in Britain in the 1930s the equivalent would have been something like an Armstrong Siddeley or a big Wolseley; in America a Lincoln or a Studebaker.

Even assuming that Hitler ever did present a car to the King of Nepal - which I sincerely doubt - a 320 would have been no more than a bauble, scarcely worthy of His Majesty's attention. Axmann mentioned K series cars: the king would have merited nothing less than a K770 "Grosser Mercedes": the car in the picture is definitely not one of those!
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ghostsoldier
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Re: Hitler, the car dealer...

Post by ghostsoldier » 23 Jun 2008 21:43

"Even God cannot change the past. "
-Agathon (448 BC - 400 BC)

vszulc
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Re: Hitler, the car dealer...

Post by vszulc » 24 Jun 2008 11:21

For those not versed in motoring history, a Mercedes Benz 320 was by no means a prestige vehicle in the way a Rolls Royce, Cadillac, Cord or Hispano Suiza was: in Britain in the 1930s the equivalent would have been something like an Armstrong Siddeley or a big Wolseley; in America a Lincoln or a Studebaker.
What does that have to do with anything? Nepal in the 1940'ies is hardly a place for a prestige vehicle, with the roads in mind. And back then in Nepal, ANY car would have been a modern wonder.

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