Reifenspuren | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch

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Wer so spricht, daß er verstanden wird, spricht immer gut. Molière (1622 – 1673)

Im Dezember 2013 schrieb und veröffentlichte ich den ersten Drive-by Snapshots Artikel über einen amerikanischen Weltkriegsveteranen, der seit Jahrzehnten das abgelegte Blechkleid eines Franzosen trägt. Diesen interessanten Gesellen fand ich 2010 an einer kleinen Tankstelle im ländlichen Frankreich. Sechs Jahre später kam ich durch Zufall wieder dort vorbei und erkundigte mich nach dessen Verbleib.

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Mazda Familia 1400 pick-up Surat Thani Thailand | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2016)

Snapshot | Mazda Familia 1400 Pick-up

“Every breath we take, every step we make, can be filled with peace, joy and serenity.”   Thich Nhat Hanh

Every breath taken and every step made during my stay in Thailand eventually led me to taking this picture, which is filled with peace, joy and serenity. Even though I’m a photographer specializing in cars, this photograph is not about the vehicle at all – but rather about the people living a relaxed and happy life. It was very quiet when I took it and made me very emotional just by absorbing the peaceful atmosphere.

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Suzuki Swift Sport and Hello Kitty coach Tokyo Station | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2017)

Hello Kitty tour bus at Tokyo Station | Suzuki Swift Sport

Cycling in Tokyo on Golden Week sunday was very interesting because the streets that are usually very busy are almost empty. With less traffic there is a better chance for taking pictures of interesting cars with a cleaner background than usual. I found this Suzuki Swift Sport right in front of Tokyo Station and actually had to wait until the Toyota Crown taxi appeared to make the construction zone fence a little more interesting.

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Isuzu D-Max SLX Crew Cab Drag Diesel Thailand | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2016)

Isuzu D-Max SLX Crew Cab | Drag Diesel Thailand

Most people prefer an air-conditioned taxi cab to get around in the sweaty heat of Bangkok. However, for car-spotting purposes a tuk-tuk is the far better alternative. Why? Because of the better all-round visibility. And if you are a lucky chap, something interesting gets stuck in traffic besides the tuk-tuk. In this case, on our way to the airport, I spotted this Isuzu D-Max SLX crew-cab. First I noticed the nice-looking set of Cosmis Racing Wheels (RG-06). The offset works great to accentuate the lines of this vehicle. The front-mounted intercooler and the brake set-up give a hint that there might be a little bit more than stock power under the hood. Oh… and there is that Pro Speed Racing sticker.

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FIAT Ritmo 65 CL Strasbourg France | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2016)

FIAT Ritmo 65 CL and a beautiful old lady in Strasbourg, France

“A beautiful lady is an accident of nature. A beautiful old lady is a work of art.”   Louis Nizer

Dear readers,

you might be wondering why I choose this quote to accompany todays post. Both the FIAT Ritmo 65 CL and the graffitti snake in the cover picture have a bewildered surprised expression on their faces, as if they are wondering about the same thing.

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Dodge Challenger SRT-8 392 Hemi Muscat Oman | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2016)

Dodge Challenger SRT-8 392 Hemi | Abandoned near Muscat, Oman

“Don’t become a mere recorder of facts, but try to penetrate the mystery of their origin.”   Ivan Pavlov

Avid readers might remember the JDM goodness I found in Muscat right the sun rose out of the ocean. Driving  northwest along the coast on a Friday was a great opportunity to take pictures of vehicles that wouldn’t be there any other day of the week. More on all the 4×4 vehicles I found there will be covered in a different story here on I circled the new airport development and just before I reached the city limits, a baby blue vehicle caught my attention. Naturally, I turned off the main road to check it out.

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Mercedes-Benz TAXI Concept | artwork by Jonas Franz (2017)

Taxis aus aller Welt

Taxis aus aller Welt

Wer diese Überschrift liest denkt meist sofort an weltbekannte Klassiker wie das London Taxi oder die Yellow Cabs in New York. Aber wie sehen Taxis in anderen Ländern und Städten aus? Wer erinnert sich noch daran nach einer Fahrt mit der Deutschen Bahn am Bahnhof den Taxistand zu suchen und dort lange Reihen fast identischer Mercedes-Benz Taxis der Baureihe W123 zu finden? Alle im typischen Farbton RAL 1015 Hellelfenbein lackiert und innen meist mit strapazierfähigem, schwarzem MB Tex ausgestattet.
Begleiten Sie mich auf eine kurze Reise und lernen sie kennen, welch bunte Vielfalt sich weltweit hinter dem Wort TAXI verbirgt.
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Toyota Carina TA20 | Gatebil Rudskogen

“Everyone says Toyota is the best company in the world, but the customer doesn’t care about the world. They care if we are the best in town, or not. That’s what I want to be.”   Akio Toyoda

Mr. Toyoda-san was proven right in 1979 when a customer decided to buy the best car in town. He or she could have chosen something entirely else, but for some reason or another this plain white 2-door Toyota Carina TA20 got picked.
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1932 Ford 5-window hot rod Angeles City Philippines | drive-by snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2017)

1932 Ford Hot Rod in Angeles City

“The marvels of daily life are exciting. No movie director can arrange the unexpected that you find in the street.”   Robert Doisneau

Unexpected finds put the biggest smiles on my face. Much as the Beetles in Bangkok, this sparkling red 1932 Ford 5-window hot rod suddenly appeared on the side of the road in Angeles City, Philippines. The for sale sign in the windshield told us to call Steve, but unfortunately there was no time to further investigate the details of this classic vehicle. It’s up to you to guess the engine and transmission specs and whether this is a steel or plastic body. All I can tell you from the brief glance is that it is in mint condition. Enjoy the pictures!

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Volkswagen | Beetles in Bangkok

“Let it be, let it be. There will come an answer, let it be.”   The Beatles

thailandEight hours layover between flights at BKK, recovering from a sea kayak accident and barely being able to walk I asked myself what to do with the time? Sitting idle at the airport wasn’t really a choice and while dragging my suitcase around the lively airport, I stumbled accross a sign pointing to the Airport Rail Link that ends in downtown Bangkok. Sitting in a train means not having to walk and so I bought a one-way ticket. At the downtown terminal I found myself looking at a rather large intersection. Hmm…

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Citroen HY 1964 Carrosserie Le Bastard | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2014)

Citroën HY S.E.V. Marchal | Carrosserie Le Bastard 1964

Flag FranceIn the 1960’s the internet wasn’t invented yet and only a few people had a black and white TV. Apart from advertising in newspapers and cinemas, companies had to come up with different ideas to get the attention of potential customers. In France, many companies ordered special re-bodied vehicles from coach builders to gain attention at events like the Tour de France and the 24 Heures du Mans. These vehicles drove along the circuit before the races began. Concerning the Tour de France, the tradition lives on even today, but unfortunately most vehicles are not purpose-built solely for advertising duty any more.

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Dodge WC-51 Wrecker with Peugeot 404 Cab Conversion | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2016)

Dodge WC-51 Wrecker with Peugeot 404 Cabin Conversion

“We have had a very severe frost and deep snow this month.
My thermometer was one day fourteen degrees and a half
below the freezing point, within doors.”   Gilbert White

Flag FranceUtilizing surplus WWII machinery with canvas tops for towing wrecked cars in the winter at high altitudes with plenty of snow has certain disadvantages. The canvas covers freeze and eventually break when you move them. Scraping the ice of the plastic windows sratches them permanently and you never get warm and comfortable inside the vehicle, even with the heater on at full blast. To solve these problems and to make his live easier, Monsieur Negre could have bought new tow trucks. But hey! This would have been too easy. Men capable of creative thinking get pencil and paper out instead of the checkbook. Why should you throw away perfectly good vehicles just for the sake of being more comfortable?

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Willys MB Jeep with Renault R4 body conversion | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2016)

Revisited | Willys MB Jeep with Renault R4 body conversion

Flag FranceSix years ago I discovered a Willys MB Jeep with a Renault 4 body conversion and took some pictures.
Two and a half years ago I started to write this blog and decided to kick it off with the story about the converted Jeep.
A week ago, on a roadtrip home from Malaga, we spontaneously decided to cross the Massif Central instead of driving through the Rhône valley.

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Sunset Snapshot on wet road 03 | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2015)

Chance and coincidence

“The world is so unpredictable. Things happen suddenly, unexpectedly. We want to feel we are in control of our own existence. In some ways we are, in some ways we’re not. We are ruled by the forces of chance and coincidence.”   Paul Auster
Flag GermanyFellow photographer Marco Spalluto (spallutography) and I once discussed the influence of the various factors when taking photographs. Spotting the opportunity, composing the picture, getting all the settings on your camera right and pressing the button at the right time. All of them are essential, but to get everything anywhere close to what you think is perfect takes a lot of time. However, many awesome moments are exactly what the name suggests: moments in time. Capturing a moment in bright daylight is more often than not measured in thousands of a second shutter speed.
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dbs Subaru WRX STI Muscat Oman | photography by Sebastian Motsch

The rising sun reveals pure JDM goodness in Oman

Flag Oman“The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time.” John Lennon

We all agree that anything is better than spending twelve hours between flights at a boring airport, don’t we? In order to enjoy it and make the most of the time I had to waste anyways, I spontaneously bought a five day visa, went outside and rented a car. Nothing fancy to write home about – just a plain and dull Chevrolet Malibu. But hey – the A/C worked and the seats are way more comfortable than the benches in the transit area of the airport. OK then, let’s go! No GPS, no map, no plan. This is the way I love to start an adventure!

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dbs Simca Hot Rod 1955 France | photography by Sebastian Motsch

Nondescript French Concrete Mixer Hot Rod

Flag FranceTodays post is something for classic car fans who love challenges. I found this French hot rod with a mock-up concrete mixer on the back in rural France back in 2007. Ever since then, I’ve been wondering what the hell this is actually based on.

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dbs Volvo P1800 Schloss Freudenhain Passau | phootgraphy by Sebastian Motsch

Volvo P1800 | Schloss Freudenhain Passau

Flag Germany“You recently posted a picture of a beige car on Facebook. I don’t know what kind of car it is, but the picture is so beautiful that I looked at it more than once.”   Daniela Stühler

This quote is from a friend who isn’t really interested in cars – but has a professionally trained eye and lots of practical experience with equilibrated color combinations. When we met a couple of days after posting the preview shot on Facebook, she told me that she loves how perfect the color and style of the car correspond with the background. The way she spoke about her impressions of the picture catapulted me back to that very hot day in 2014 when I portrayed Stefans’ Volvo. Daniela, this article is dedicated to you for putting my previously unspoken feelings about these photos into words. Thank you.

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Station Service Saint Priest de Gimel France | photography by Sebastian Motsch

Lost Places | Station Service abandonné in St. Priest-de-Gimel

Flag FranceDriving past this abandoned service station in 2007 sparked a memory. A long time ago, when I was a young boy, we used to take the same route between Clermand-Ferrand and Bordeaux. If I remember correctly, this station was still in service back then and we might even have stopped there to fill up.

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Peugeot 504 Pick-up Strasbourg France | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2015)

Peugeot 504 Pick-up with more patina than rust

Flag FranceWhenever I take a road less traveled, there seems to be something interesting hiding behind a tree just around the corner. En route to the Parc de l’Orangerie in Strasbourg with my girlfriend, we found a somewhat sad looking Peugeot 504 Pick-up.

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Station Service Le Rousset France | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2010)

Lost Places | Station Service Le Rousset

Flag FranceWhen was the last time you found something not only totally unexpected, but also thought to be extinct by now? Trundling along the Route Départementale D27 at a leisurely pace on a hot day with no cloud in sight, we had a moment just like that, when we found the cutest rural petrol station and workshop. The icing on the cake most definitely was the color-matched Renault R5, which made the scene even more unreal.

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