DBS France

Volkswagen T2b Biarritz France | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2009)

Volkswagen T2b | This is not an abandoned vehicle

Flag FranceVolkswagen T2b | This is not an abandoned vehicle

This was one of those ‘by chance’ finds. While trying to find a good vantage point to take a few pictures of Biarritz, I turned into one of those dead-end alleys you often find near the beach. Out of curiosity I followed the tiny road around a bend – and found this Fuchs equipped Volkswagen T2 hiding there. Quite clever actually: park where it’s free of charge, grab your surfboard and head for one of the famous surfing spots. I really like the sticker on the windscreen, because it somehow fits the overall theme of the van.

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Biarritz Chateau d'Ilbarritz France | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2009)

Lost places | Biarritz, Château d’Ilbarritz

Flag FranceLost places | Biarritz

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Mercedes-Benz W123 Coupe with Constructam Caravan | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2009)

Mercedes-Benz C123 | A Comet coupled to a Coupé

Flag FranceMercedes-Benz C123 | A Comet coupled to a Coupé

Surfing makes hungry and supplies don’t last forever. Coming back from shopping groceries at the local supermarket in Lit-et-Mixe, we found this period-perfect car and trailer combination: A shiny blue Mercedes-Benz W123 Coupé with a Constructam Comet 6T caravan in tow.

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Volkswagen T3 Syncro Westfalia | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2009)

Volkswagen T3 Syncro | The perfect travel companion

Flag FranceVolkswagen T3 Syncro | The perfect travel companion

The perfect travel companion? Should be able to go anywhere while carrying all the things you might need there. Oh… and providing ample sleeping space and a fridge to keep the drinks cool wouldn’t hurt either. This immaculate Volkswagen T3 Syncro Westfalia camper ticks all the right boxes and comes quite close to being the perfect travel companion, doesn’t it?

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Renault 5 A5 Turbo Hossegor France | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2009)

Renault R5 A5 Turbo | Up the hip!

Flag FranceRenault R5 A5 Turbo | Up the hip!

Finding this little gem in Hossegor was a treat. The silver of the Renault 5 A5 Turbo matched the orange in the background perfectly. Looking at the picture again recently while resizing it and adding the watermark, I discovered something in the picture that I had missed previously: the store is called HIP UP – and the little girl is sitting up on daddy’s hip. Funny coincidence, isn’t it?

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Ford Transit Mk1 Campervan | Artwork by Sebastian Motsch (2018)

Ford Transit Mk1 | Forwards ever – backwards never!

Flag FranceFord Transit Mk1 | Forwards ever – backwards never!

There are a number of songs with that or very similar titles that instantly came to my mind while sorting pictures from a 2009 trip to the French Atlantic coast. We spotted this Ford Transit Mk1 camper van in Hossegor.

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Station Service Saint Priest de Gimel France | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2009)

Lost Places | Station Service abandonné en St. Priest-de-Gimel

Flag FranceStation Service abandonné en St. Priest-de-Gimel

Lost Places   |   Rust in Peace


Driving past this abandoned service station in 2007 sparked a memory. A long time ago, when I was a young boy, we used to take the same route between Clermand-Ferrand and Bordeaux. If I remember correctly, this station was still in service back then and we might even have stopped there to fill up.

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Station du Haut Limousin France | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2009)

Lost places | Station du Haut-Limousin

Flag FranceStation du Haut-Limousin

Lost Places   |   Rust in Peace


In 2009 we found an abandoned service station, somewhere in the Haut-Limousin region of France. I quite like the old fashioned architectural approach and design. The service station and garage must have been very busy, at a time long gone and almost forgotten. Inside, it was completely empty. Thoughts of buying it bugged me and I couldn’t forget it for a long time. In 2013, I drove past it again – and didn’t even bother to stop and take a picture. It had been converted into a mattress store. Painted in awful colors, with ugly billboards and cheap advertising – destroying the vintage character of the building completely. It was really sad, to see it in such an unattractive condition. 🙁

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Toyota Tercel 4WD | Pick-up Conversion

Flag FranceToyota Tercel 4WD Pick-up Conversion

Because of a massive swell we couldn’t go surfing one day. Instead we opted to drive south and look for a nice café in Biarritz. Walking out on the pier of Capbreton in these weather conditions is always a weclome challenge and was rewarded with stunning pictures. Back on the mainland, we thought our eyes fooled us… but something was indeed missing  from the Toyota Tercel 4WD driving past.

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Toyota LandCruiser 80-Series | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2009)

Toyota LandCruiser HJ80 | Leader of the 2CV pack

Flag FranceToyota LandCruiser HJ80 | Leader of the 2CV pack

Some people drive a Citroën 2CV for fun. Some people want to have more fun with their 2CV and take them on a trip to the Sahara desert in Morocco. A great idea if you are not afraid to take your classic vehicle on long distance trips under sometimes harsh conditions. The French call this kind of adventure “raid” – and it is anyone’s guess whether or not this word originates from being afRAID once or twice along the way.

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Citroen 2CV Deux Deuches Custom | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2009)

Citroën 2CV | Deux Deuches Custom

Flag FranceCitroën 2CV | Deux Deuches Custom

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Citroen 2CV Burton Roadster | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2009)

Citroën 2CV | Burton Roadster

Flag FranceBurton Roadster

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Citroen Dyane StanceRat | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2009)

Citroën Dyane | The ugly duckling of the 2CV family

Flag FranceCitroën Dyane

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Willam City Lambretta Microcar France | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2009)

Dinosaur scares Willem Lambretta

Flag FranceDinosaur scares Willem Lambretta

“Whoa! Watch out! There’s a dino on the roundabout!” – Diana Tischler

My girlfriend tried to scare me while pointing out the obvious. Oh well I thought and pretended to be calm and totally in control of the situation – while flicking on the high beams of my Impala brown 190E. Remember the day in driving school, when they told you that deer and many other animals freeze and subsequently don’t move, due to temporary blindness? Gotta tell you – it works mighty fine to stop a French dino in its’ tracks. Just look at his eye.

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Sercel Nomad 65 Neo | Broadband vibrators

Flag FranceSercel Nomad 65 Neo | Broadband vibrators

A beautiful Sunday afternoon, driving along the Doubs river in France with the convertible top down. We found this pair of Convoi Exceptionnel trucks, parked opposite the lock between Le Barre and Ranchot . The load looked quite interesting and we stopped to have a look.

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Renault Dauphine Mezos France | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2007)

Renault Dauphine | Like ice in the sunshine

Flag FranceRenault Dauphine | Like ice in the sunshine

Imagine a sizzling hot day early in June, with temperatures well over 30°C and no wind whatsoever. We are cruising through the pine forests between Biarritz and Bordeaux at a leisurely pace with the windows and sunroof wide open. The loudspeakers of the trusty old Mercedes play a tune most Germans immediately associate with childhood memories of family summer vacations.

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Simca Hot Rod 1955 France Front | Drive-by Snapshots by Sebastian Motsch (2007)

Rust in Peace | Nondescript French Concrete Mixer Hot Rod

Flag FranceNondescript French Concrete Mixer Hot Rod

Lost Places   |   Rust in Peace


Todays post is something for classic car fans who love challenges. I found this French hot rod with a mock-up concrete mixer on the back in rural France back in 2007. Ever since then, I’ve been wondering what the hell this is actually based on.

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