Παρασκευή, 1 Απριλίου 2016

For Sale: The Car That Nobody Wants; Reichführer SS Heinrich Himmler’s Car


by Joris Nieuwint -
 


 
HimmlerCar
For a while now, Himmler’s has been on the market for a whopping €500.000, it is in pristine condition and a real looker but it seems to be that the history of the car might be too big a burden for most interested buyers.

 
It is the vehicle that Heinrich Himmler used to drive around the Third Reich to inspect the concentration camps and to oversee the work of the Einsatzgruppen, mobile killing squads operating in the captured eastern territories.
Himmler was one of the most powerful men in Nazi Germany and one of the people most directly responsible for the Holocaust.
 
He joined the Nazi Party in 1923 and the SS in 1925. In 1929, he was appointed Reichsführer-SS by Hitler. Over the next 16 years, he developed the SS from a mere 290-man battalion into a million-strong paramilitary group, and, following Hitler’s orders, set up and controlled the Nazi concentration camps.
He was known to have good organisational skills and for selecting highly competent subordinates. From 1943 onwards, he was both Chief of German Police and Minister of the Interior, overseeing all internal and external police and security forces, including the Gestapo (Secret State Police).
Himmler in Russia standing in a Wanderer W11
Heinrich Himmler in Russia in 1942 standing in a Wanderer W11 looking at a bicycle troops parading past.
On Hitler’s behalf, Himmler formed the Einsatzgruppen and built extermination camps. As facilitator and overseer of the concentration camps, Himmler directed the killing of some six million Jews, between 200,000 and 500,000 Romani people, and other victims; the total number of civilians killed by the regime is estimated at eleven to fourteen million people. Most of them were Polish and Soviet citizens.
 
In 1945, realising that the war was lost, he attempted to open peace talks with the Western Allies without Hitler’s knowledge shortly before the war ended. Hearing of this, Hitler dismissed him from all his posts in April 1945 and ordered his arrest. Himmler attempted to go into hiding, but was detained and then arrested by British forces once his identity became known. While in British custody, he committed suicide on 23 May 1945.
Himmler in Metz, France, visiting the Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler. Note the Wanderer W11 in the background.
Himmler in Metz, France, visiting the Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler. Note the Wanderer W11 in the background.
The vehicle was first used by the “Leibstandarte SS – Adolf Hitler” and was then handed over to the personal staff of “Reichsführer SS Heinrich Himmler.” He was the last owner of the vehicle during the Second World War and in January 1945 when Himmler was appointed as commander of Army Group Vistula, the car took part in the Russian campaign.
After the war, the car was shipped to Russia where it was displayed in a museum in Riga until 1991. When the museum went bankrupt, the vehicle was moved yet again, and now it is in the warehouse of vintage car dealer Michael Fröhlich.
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Fröhlich has been operating an Oldtimer Agency in Germany for over 40 years. He specializes in “Fantastic Vehicles” and has sold a multitude of celebrity vehicles, including the Rolls-Royce of the King of Marocco.
The car is not a replica but an original which is still in very good, and partially restored condition. WWII historians have confirmed that this is the car used by Himmler to oversee the mass murder of millions.
The Wanderer W11/1 four-seater, 65 horsepower, 6-cylinder with 63,000km on the clock is now being offered for sale by vintage car dealer Michael Fröhlich. His Oldtimer Agency has been running for 40 years in Germany. He has previously sold the Rolls-Royce of the Moroccan king and a host of vehicles owned by celebrities.
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Over 5,500 Wanderer W11’s were built between 1933 and 1941, most were used for towing light artillery pieces like the 37mm anti-tank gun. It’s got a 4-speed gearbox driving the rear wheels and weighs 1780 kg. The official designation was Car, Medium, 4×2 Kfz. 12.
 
There have been interested parties seeking to buy the car, but Michael Fröhlich refuses to sell to neo-Nazi’s thus the car has remained in his care for some time now. However, Frölich is confident the car will be bought by a rich American collector.
More pictures:
$_27 (8)Close up of the drivers console
 
$_27 (7)The rear of the vehicle, note the storage area for ammunition / suitcases
Himmler bei Besichtigung, RadfahrerabteilungAnother shot of Himmler in his Wanderer watching a parade of bicycle troops in Russia. Note the suitcases stacked on the rear of the vehicle.
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$_27 (3)This is where Himmler would have been seated
 
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Visit Fantastic Cars for more information, image credit: Fantastic Cars
Sources: 1, 2

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