Germany’s Oldest Street-Legal Car | 1894 Benz Victoria | German Cars

Germany’s Oldest Street-Legal Car | 1894 Benz Victoria | German Cars


This is the “Benz Viktoria” — built by German automobile pioneer Karl Benz over 100 years ago! Today, Karl-Heinz Rehkopf – dressed for the occasion – is taking the vintage ride for a spin. It even has a regular license plate. This old-timer is street-legal. “This is the vehicle that passed down its
genes to all other cars. The unique thing about this car is that it’s
the oldest one still allowed on German roads.” Needless to say, the vintage “Benz Viktoria”
has its quirks… “This isn’t a steering wheel but more a steering
arm. I’ll move it. And there’s a curious kind of indicator that shows you in which direction the car will go. And then I have a small lever that I control
with my left hand to accelerate.” This car has two gears. And when I want to brake I need to get out
of gear quickly so that I am in neutral. Then I can use either my foot brake or my
hand brake to my left.” I have two horns. One that I sqeeze. And a so-called “klaxon” that I control with my foot. Karl-Heinz Rehkopf bought the vintage car
in 2009. Until then, it had been in possession of the
well-to-do Gütermann family for four generations. In fact, one former owner even managed to get the first ever speeding ticket in this car. For going though town….at an “eye-watering”
29 kilometers an hour. Well, going top speed does feel like the car
is really at its limit. The steering arm and everything doesn’t
feel very stable. When ever the car struggles, you struggle
with it. And when it rains, you both get wet. You obviously want to avoid that. It’s rare that Karl-Heinz Rehkopf takes this
vintage car out on the road. Usually, it can be admired at atransport museum
near Göttingen. Michael Marx, the museums’ mechanic, knows
exactly how to fix “Viktoria” if something’s not working as it should. “Here, you can see the piston. It’s a big one. It’s got a 3-liter-engine. You can see it running.” Unlike cars today, simply turning the ignition
isn’t enough to start it up. First, you need pull a few levers. And adjust the engine settings to the weather
conditions so it runs smoothly. As you can imagine…depending on the weather,
temperature, humidity and air pressure you need to fiddle around pretty long until the
engine runs properly.” In April 2019, they took “Benz Viktoria” for
a technical inspection to see if it was safe to drive on German roads. After in in-depth inspection, the car was
given the go ahead. But only under a few conditions, as car mechanic
Burghard Niemietz explains: “The car doesn’t have any electrical wiring,
so hazard warning lights were not retrofitted — which usually is required. And the car doesn’t have blinkers. That means the car may only be driven in daytime,
in good weather conditions. And the driver must carry a signalling disk.” Rehkopf’s wife is usually in charge of the
signalling disk when ever the two go for a ride. Though they car isn’t really built for long-distance
travel anyway…. Its tiny tank quickly runs out of gas. Besides, it doesn’t run on ordinary fuel. But rather on Petroleum ether, which these
days you can only get in pharmacies. But even with a full tank, you won’t get anywhere
fast. “I guess this is about embracing slowness. It’s not about reaching your destination per
se, but about enjoying the ride itself.”

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100 Replies to “Germany’s Oldest Street-Legal Car | 1894 Benz Victoria | German Cars”

  1. They had to get in inspected to see if they would be allowed to drive it?
    I see Gov is still trying to squeeze every last penny from anything no matter how unnecessary. Good thing it was "inspected" wouldn't want that 12mph car to kill everyone

  2. Yeah but what's it's ENCAAP rating?

    Looks like its got spoon brakes instead of brembos, no roll bar despite being a convertible, and suitcase crumple zones.

    I think someone cheated on their R&D……I think this is actually a Volkswagen

  3. Its a miracle usa did not take it at II World war hitlers and goering benz where stolen in the name of liberation!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Wow, just wow!…It's beautiful and can you imagine driving one of these during the time they were made, what a luxury that must have been back then. I love history like this and I like even more that it can be driven so everyone can enjoy it's beauty.

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