Per total, in Romania anului 1988 masinile nu se modificau foarte frumos. In cel mai bun caz proprietarii puneau fel de fel de birizbrizuri pe Daciile lor personale: beculete, perdelute, diverse instrumente de bord, o gramada de chestii care nu prea ajutau cu nimic. Antebelicele inca se "modernizau" cu fel de fel de piese luate de pe modele romanesti sau sovietice. Uzina Dacia si fel de fel de service-uri incercau sa faca din biata Dacie Sport un Porsche sau poate un BMW M3. Pana si uzinele TV din Bucuresi au facut o serie de TV-uri tunate pentru brosuri vestice. Deci am fost uimit sa vad o poza in revista Autoturism cu o masina extrem de rara in Romania anilor 80: un Audi 50. Audiul 50 era o versiune de lux a Volkswagenului Polo. Nu s-a vandut bine deloc si dupa 4 ani si 108000 exemplare s-a retras de e piata. Banuiesc ca apartinuse unui student strain ; intr-adevar, multe masini simiplare deveneau epave, nefiind posibilitatea de a procura piese necesare. Oricum, a fost salvata si modificata, rezultatul, in parerea mea, aratand chiar OK. Presupun ca in Clujul anului 1988 facea furori!
By and large, in 1988 in Romania cars were not being well modified. On locally-made cars, each owner strove to imprint his personality on it: extra lights, curtains, dashboard instruemnts, and a vast array of other useless things found their way on the unsuspecting cars. Pre-war vehicles were still being "modernised" with whatever bits coul be cannibalised off Romanian or Soviet cars. The Dacia factory, and various workshops, tried to make the poor Dacia Sport into a Porsche or a BMW M3. Perhaps most ridiculously, even a tarted-up series of TV light vans was made, for use in Western brochures. Therefore, I was astonished to find in the Autoturism magazine a photo of a very unusual car to find in Romania at that time: an Audi 50. The Audi 50, basically a deluxe version of the VW Polo, sold badly and was quietly withdrawn after 4 years and 108,000 examples. Probably this one belonged to a foreign student and, like many Western cars, was abandoned when parts became too much of a difficulty. But it was saved and modified and, to my eyes at least, looks pretty good. At any rate, at the time, I bet it caused a stir in its native Cluj!
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