Prague to Pebble or Bust: The Epic Tatra Trip Begins

Tatra T97

Team TFL is in Prague to begin our epic road trip that will take a 50-year-old Tatra 603 all the way from Prague to the 2014 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. There’s a good chance you’ve never even heard of Tatra, so here’s a little history on this iconic Czech auto manufacturer.

Tatra is the third oldest car manufacturer in the world after Mercedes-Benz and Peugeot and Tatra chief engineer, Hans Ledwinka, actually built the world’s first aerodynamic car. You’d think this would have cemented the brand’s future, but the Tatra 97 model was swept up by Adolf Hitler during the WW II and became instead the Volkswagen Beetle. Hans Ledwinka’s name is now unknown while rival Ferdinand Porsche received all the fame and credit by building the Volkswagen Beetle which sold over 22 million units world wide.

Tatra no longer builds cars, although they do manufacture trucks, and their little known contribution to automotive history is being honored at the 2014 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance with a special class. TFLcar aims to be there with the Tatra 603. We’ll be bringing you pictures and video along the way, starting with these images of some real classics at the Tatra Museum in Kopřivnice.

Nicole Wakelin fell in love with cars as a teenager when she got to go for a ride in a Ferrari. It was red and it was fast and that was all that mattered. Game over. She considers things a bit more carefully now, but still has a weakness for fast, beautiful cars. Nicole also writes for NerdApproved and GeekMom.