France

Renault R4 Nancy France | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2018)

Renault R4 in Nancy, France

Flag FranceErinnerungen an den ersten Neuwagen meiner Eltern

Spontan sind wir dieses Jahr an Ostern über die Grenze nach Nancy gefahren und haben das Auto in einem leicht patinierten Parkhaus abgestellt. Der Weg zum Ausgang führt uns quer über das Parkdeck. Wir unterhalten uns über einen der ersten Besuche meiner Eltern in unserem wunderschönen Nachbarland. Jahrzehnte ist dieser Ausflug her und ich stelle mir vor, wie es in dem damals neuen Parkhaus ausgesehen haben mag. Anstelle von silbernen, schwarzen und weißen Einheitsfahrzeugen parkten hier damals Autos in allen möglichen Formen und Farben ― je bunter desto besser.

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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

Flag 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 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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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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Yellow and Blue | Day seven

While digging through my picture archives, I became aware of having many pictures that have one thing in common: matching color schemes. It really is interesting how some color combinations can be found whichever country you go to. This week I’m going to feature a selection of pictures containing the bright colors Yellow & Blue.

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Yellow and Blue | Day five

While digging through my picture archives, I became aware of having many pictures that have one thing in common: matching color schemes. It really is interesting how some color combinations can be found whichever country you go to. This week I’m going to feature a selection of pictures containing the bright colors Yellow & Blue.

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Yellow and Blue | Day two

While digging through my picture archives, I became aware of having many pictures that have one thing in common: matching color schemes. It really is interesting how some color combinations can be found whichever country you go to. This week I’m going to feature a selection of pictures containing the bright colors Yellow & Blue.

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Toyota LMP1 TS010 Le Mans 2014 | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2014)

Three generations of awesomeness @ Le Mans 2014

Flag FranceLe Mans 2014. Three generations of awesome LMP1 race cars from Toyota are displayed in front of the Toyota hospitality building. That’s actually a good chance to compare how the design of the vehicles has evolved over the years. They might become faster, sleeker and more aerodynamically advanced with each generation. But honestly, don’t you also think the oldest car is the most handsome and good looking?

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Porsche 935 Kremer K3 | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2014)

Porsche 935 Kremer K3 @ Le Mans 2014

Flag FranceAs promised in the previous post featuring the Snatch Panda, there are going to be a couple of posts containing more sport-orientated vehicles. First one up is the Porsche 935 Kremer K3 in the famous Vaillant livery. The car was parked in the fenced-off area where members of the Porsche Club Great Britain camped, a mere hundred meters away from the famous Porsche curve of the Circuit de la Sarthe. Unfortunately the security guard wasn’t the most sympathetic person and was neither understanding nor especially helpful. Therefore, I could only snap a few pictures through the fence 🙁

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FIAT Panda 4x4 Snatch Panda | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2014)

FIAT Panda 4×4 Mk1 | Snatch Panda @ Le Mans 2014

Flag FranceCamping at the Beauséjour campground in Le Mans near the Porsche curves provides a constant stream of interesting cars. Porsche, Lotus Seven, Aston Martin and other fine machinery are plentiful there. However, I choose this cute little FIAT Panda 4×4, nicknamed Snatch Panda, for my first LM 2014 posting. Why? Because it really stood out amongst all the high end cars and features lovely details, mimicking properly equipped larger scale 4x4s. You just gotta love the desert sand paint with the flat black accents. The camouflage nets in the rear windows are also a nice touch. Props to the builder/owner and thumbs up!

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FIAT Panda Mk1 Véhicule sans permis | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2014)

FIAT Panda Mk1 | The story is often hidden in the details

Flag FranceAll of you have have been in this situation before: a long distance, cross-country journey by car. If you happen to be driving through France, make sure to stay away from the Autoroute and use the Route Nationale instead. I bet you – it will never be boring! Driving home from the 24 Heures du Mans, we stopped at a red traffic light in Sedan (Ardennes), not far from the border to Belgium. The low sun cast an interesting shadow on the wall, in front of which a FIAT Panda was parked on the sidewalk. Not really interesting, you think? Well look closely, and you will see what instantly hit me.

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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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Station Service Fermée Tuffé France | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2014)

Lost Places | Station Service Fermée

Flag FranceThere are many reasons why I love France. One of them is the fact, that the French do not immediately dismount the pumps after a petrol station goes out of business. Instead they just display the lowest possible price on the signpost, call it a day and wander off to play a game of Pétanque with their friends, enjoying a glass of red wine.

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24h du Mans Starting Grid | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2014)

Le Mans 2014 | Starting grid and first lap

Flag FranceEverybody know about the starting procedure of the 24 Heures du Mans race. The cars are lined up in an angle in front of the pit lane wall. But… theoretically knowing about it and seeing it live are two different things entirely. All the buzz on the starting grid is quite interesting…

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Porsche 919 Hybrid LMP1 Le Mans 2014 | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2014)

Porsche 919 Hybrid LMP1 @ Le Mans 2014

Flag FranceOne of quite a few Porsche 919 Hybrid LMP1 models in 1:1 scale that graced the Michelin booth at the 24 Heures du Mans 2014. A stunning car and engineering masterpiece… but not particularly pretty. It might have looked a lot better had it sported a Martini or Gulf livery. Maybe next year?

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Land Rover Series I Matching Background | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2013)

Matching Backgrounds | Three Flavours of Rover

Over the years, I have taken quite a few pictures where the subject and the background match perfectly – be it color, style or period correct settings. Fix yourself a cup of tea, lean back and enjoy three flavors of Rover: grandpa, son and grandson.

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BMW E30 324d Strasbourg | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2014)

BMW E30 | An important birthday to be celebrated soon

Flag FranceTaking pictures of the diamond black 318is beauties on Sunday reminded me of something. A couple of weeks ago, while looking for Drive-by Snapshots in Strasbourg, I found an almost immaculate BMW E30 324d in an industrial area. The sign on the roof pointed to a used car dealership I would have otherwise missed. The silver car was for sale, but an old diesel isn’t really desirable to own in Germany due to high taxes… unless it is 30+ years old. Well this particular birthday will be celebrated in the not too distant future.

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Renault 11 Turbo | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2009)

Renault 11 Turbo | Replica of a rallye legend

Flag FranceDriving through central France. Cloudy skies with the odd rain shower now and then. An uninspiring town along the road. A boring Renault dealership. Wait! Boring? No way! Around the back, they had something interesting: A Renault 11 Turbo Rallye replica. I always like to see the simple, yet striking, designs of an era long past. Make sure to check out the video further down in this post, as it features a couple of these legendary machines.

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Winnebago LeSharo | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2013)

Winnebago LeSharo | A grey morning in September

RD 6089 near Terrasson-Lavilledieu, on a grey morning. Cruising along with the local traffic… I spotted something based on the Renault Trafic on the side of the road: the Winnebago LeSharo. I have always liked how the French design of the base vehicle integrates well with the American style camper body. If you look at other Winnebago motorhomes of the same period, you can even see a familiar resemblance. Being flanked by a US-spec Peugeot 504 Break was a nice coincidence. The dealer had many other interesting vehicles for sale, some of which you will sooner or later find here at Drive-by Snapshots.

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