I’m somewhat ashamed to admit that my wife and I get some pleasure from watching the television show Hoarders. Thankfully I don’t believe that we’re in danger of being categorized as people who hoard anytime soon, but the show holds a certain fascination for me. One of my favorite games watching the show is to try to identify the cars that almost inevitably litter the yards of some of these hoarders. Discarded, covered in mountains of trash and sometimes partially disassembled, it’s always a bit of challenge to attempt to correctly identify what make and model that individual decided to hoard. It’s usually complicated by the fact that many of them are obscure cars from the 1960s and 1970s, such as this NSU Prinz 1000. Few were originally sold in the U.S. and even fewer remain in serviceable condition today. Looking through the photos provided by the seller, though, only reminds me of that game I play against myself; without the brochure, build plate and the two older photos of the outside of the car, go ahead and try to figure out what you’re looking at:
If NSU isn’t the most recognizable name to you in German car history, you’re not alone. Few remember one of the more creative producers of cars and motorcycles out of Germany, notably, NSU developed the first Wankel rotary engines, pioneered small car designs, and notably developed the first real aerodynamic family sedan in the often praised Ro80. Additionally, the Prinz-based TT and TTS would offer a practical and very sporty package to the masses in Germany; sound familiar, Mr. 02? Imported in small numbers, there are still a few examples floating around, though show up at most shows and you’ll leave many scratching their heads. Today there is a beautiful example of one of the less-celebrated models available, a pristine Prinz 1000:
Year: 1966 Model: Prinz 1000 Engine: 1.0 liter inline-4 Transmission: 4-speed manual Mileage: 61,000 mi Price: $20,000 Buy It Now
You are bidding on an absolutely unique 1966 NSU Prinz 1000 with a four synchronized speed transmission. It was repaired, customized and updated in 2009. It was stored until October 2012 when it was registered and driving it since, taking it out only in nice weather. The engine is standard 998 cc but with a TTS camshaft, manifold and Solex carburetors. TT Oil cooler. It is also updated with a Bosch 65 Amp alternator, Bosch Solid state ignition, remote oil filter, oil thermostat and oil temperature gauge. Priming electric fuel pump. Custom header. The compression ratio is standard 1:7.5 allowing the use of regular gasoline. The car is extremely desirable, people are taking pictures of it every where I go. However, I do not claim the car is perfect and the buyer should have expectation of typical minor blisters, chips and small scratches. Seller makes no guarantee, or warranty expressed or implied of this car, it will be sold “as is”. The buyer is responsible for all shipping charges. Please feel free to e-mail me any questions you may have or call : 954-296-1374.
If you’re looking for a unique alternative to the BMW crowd and a trick piece of German history, look no further. This car has been resto-modded for better performance without sacrificing the outward originality of the package. The TT and TTS components are both desirable and rare. With lots of work completed, there are certain to be many less headaches than your normal NSU acquisition would entail. Some people really like standing out from the crowd, and what better way is there to do that than with a small red rear-engined German oddity? With microcars all the rage, this car seems well and competitively priced compared to clean 2002s and is a bargain compared to what an kind of Isetta you’d end up with. When it comes to NSUs in the U.S., they don’t get much better than the condition of this car.
NSU Motorenwerke was a fascinating company before it was bought by Volkswagen in 1969 and merged with Auto Union to form the Audi brand. Even after the company was absorbed into the Volkswagen conglomerate, certain engineering feats lived on in various models, such as this Volkswagen K70 we featured last year. One of their greatest achievements was being first to market with a rotary engine in their Spider model in 1964. This engine lived on in the impossibly futuristic Ro80 sedan in 1967. While these engines had their teething troubles, these are legendary vehicles in their own right today.
Often glossed over is their smaller Prinz model, which was introduced in 1957 with an air cooled two cylinder engine mounted in the rear. This model paved the way to the NSU 1000, TT and TTS. A popular car on the racing circuit, these were tenacious little beasts that terrorized hill climbs and venues such as the notorious Nürburgring.
Here is a nice example of a 1000 TT for sale in Tenerife, Canary Islands.
Original racing classic, original engine, original color, original upholstery. We also have the original tires with hubcaps. Very difficult to get. Dashboard tachometer goes up to 8,000 rpm.
My father, while stationed in Europe in the late 1960s, used to participate and organize hillclimbs and rallyes in Southern Germany and Austria. He has told me on several occasions that these NSUs were formidable opponents for their time. I’m a personal fan of how such a diminutive little car can have an aggressive look, especially with that Abarth style rear hood cracked open.
Here’s a good video of some of these cars in action at the TT Cup at the Homburger Bergrennen in 2007.
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