1990 Trabant 601 Limousine 1.1 4-stroke petrol from Romania


A great little car


Nothing at all!

This car is very reliable - much more so than I expected.

General Comments:

This car is the rare four-stroke version, made between 1989 and 1991. This car was very unpopular as the collapse of East Germany meant that East Germans could buy western cars and nobody wanted the little Trabi. This one came to Romania from East Germany. It had been used as a student car, and had covered very few miles.

As a result the exterior and interior are in perfect condition.

My car has had a radio and cassette player fitted and a few other things. The performance is fine for towns, but it struggles on long distance roads.

It has excellent economy and I like driving it.

It is above all a cool car to have. The styling is very "cute" and it is an ideal first car for going around town in. I love it!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 10th December, 2002

20th Apr 2003, 06:22

What exactly were the performance statistics for a Trabant 1.1? How many horsepower did it have?

21st Mar 2004, 04:02

Were could I get Trabant 1,1.

I'm trabillac fan and I have Traby 601 (1987).

I'd like to have also the new (if 89-91 is new) version of this magnificent car.



25th Nov 2010, 04:11

The Trabant 1.1 (actually 1043cc) was much faster and more economical than the Polo that used the same engine, due to the Trabant's light body. For me though, it's neither a true Trabant or a Volkswagen, and I'd rather have the two stroke Trabi, with its column gear change.

The 1989 one is probably the best one to have, just before the Volkswagen four stroke came into play. These last two strokes had electronic ignition, which makes a great improvement with two strokes.

3rd Oct 2014, 07:36

The 2 stroke car was made alongside the 1.1 VW engined car for a while. They made the 601 until July 1990, so there are 1990, 2 stroke cars available (I have one).

The biggest problem with the VW engined car is the gear box. The VW gear box to suit that engine couldn't be made fit into the Trabant, and the 601 column change gear box couldn't handle the torque of the VW unit, so the Sachsenring engineers had to make a gear box to suit in a short time frame. The result is a gear box that can give trouble, especially linkage problems and notchy difficult changes. The Wartburg 1.3, which used the 1.3 VW Polo/Golf engine, also shared this gear box.

1990 Trabant 601 from North America


Simple is best...that's why I STILL drive a Trabant even in the USA!


Since importing my Trabant to the USA in April of 2000, the only repairs required were new spark plugs every 6 months and a new battery. There have been no breakdowns or repairs needed and I understand that I am the ONLY person in the United States to have a Trabant registered AND driven daily as my only motor vehicle.

General Comments:

I replaced all 4 tires with Dunlops simply because I shipped the car from Germany fitted with snow tires. I spend $14 a month on regular unleaded gasoline which I mix 50:1 with Wal-Mart 2-Cycle Outboard Motor Oil and a lead additive. I live in the Ozark Mountains of Northern Arkansas and find my Trabant to be an excellent "in-town" car, but not well suited, due to speed limitations, for extensive hill climbing or long distance trips.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 8th July, 2002

24th Jul 2002, 09:26

I am looking for a Trabant to purchase here in the USA. If you could help me by telling me where you got it, how you got it over here and, I think I might be mistaken, but isn't 2-cycle illegal for autos?

Ryan (antifa7@yahoo.com)

14th Feb 2003, 02:52

I don't know about Trabants, but owners of DKW:s, which the Trabant engine is based on, says that their engines last longer when they drive on 4-stroke motor oil.

Though it will smell HORRIBLE!