News from Poland
A New Polish Car
A photograph of the original Syrena, a legend of the the communist period.
The Ministry of Infrastructure and Development has announced that a new version of the legendary Polish car, the Syrena, will be produced in Kutno from late 2016. The project will cost more than seven million zloties, the majority of which will come from European Union grants and funding.
The new Syrena will have a 1.4 litre 90 hp petrol engine, with a five-speed manual gearbox. The car uses a steel chassis and largely composite bodywork. Production will probably be on a fairly small scale at least initially with it is estimated 500 cars being produced per year. The cost of each car has been estimated at around 60 thousand złoty.
The original Syrena was produced between 1957 and 1983, first in Warsaw and then in Bielsko-Biala.
See a film report on the project (in Polish) and view the prototype version of the new Syrena here.
Related: information on and images of the original FSO Syrena.
The much-loved Polish Fiat 126 ‘Maluch’ Car
A fine example of a Polish Fiat 126p spotted at rest in the small town of Skwierzyna, Lubuskie, western Poland.
The Polski Fiat 126p was first produced in 1973 in Poland. It was based on the tiny Italian Fiat 126 car, with the letter ‘p’ was added to its name to indicate that it was built in Poland. It was produced by Fabryka Samochodow Malolitrazowych (FSM) in Bielsko-Biala and Tychy in the south of Poland under licence. Its very small size led to the car being given the nickname ‘maluch’ (small one). Due to its relatively low price it was very popular in Poland and probably the most popular car throughout the 1980s. Production of the car finally ended in September 2000 after a production run of 3,318,674 units. The number of Fiat 126p cars in use in Poland has decreased dramatically in recent years and they are becoming a rare sight on Polish roads.
1970s advertising for the Fiat 126p.
The Maluch is now becoming something of a collector’s item, and prices are rising fast for good examples. I recommend that you get yourself a 126p before prices reach ridiculous levels!
Related content on Polish Poland: information on the larger Polski Fiat 125p.
Although, very few cars can now be viewed as genuinely Polish, this was not the case during the communist period. Here are the best known classic Polish cars. All were once common sights on the roads of communist Poland.
Sadly today most of these Polish autos are disappearing quickly from Polish roads. In their place, many hundreds of thousands of old German cars such as Opel, VW, Audi, BMW, and Mercedes have been imported from western Europe. Bizarrely though many of these used imports are cars, which are no longer deemed roadworthy in Germany.