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Photographer's Note

Janus was a double-faced roman god of beginning and end, of entry and exit.

Zündapp-Werke GmbH of Nuremberg was one of Germany's most successfull producers of motorbikes from 1921 until 1984. The company tried to become a part of the rapidly growing car industry, acquired the licence of the Dornier Delta prototype and produced this microcar under the obvious name "Zündapp Janus".

Janus was double-faced, with identical front and rear doors. The four passengers sat dos-à-dos, with the two rear passengers looking back and the engine between the two backrests, thus enabling the kids to poke out their tongues to the following drivers unnoticed by the parents.

The curious car was practical in daily use, with much room for heads and legs of the rear passengers and a great ease to load bulky objects. Length was 289 cm, with equal width and height amounting to 141 cm. With only 14 HP and vmax = 85 km/h, Janus was definitely undermotorized. Its price (including a heating) was 3330 DM then, which was too close to the 3780 DM charged for VW Beetle Standard, so Janus proved to be an economical flop. Only 6902 of them were produced 1957-1958.

Caught with iPhone 8 inside Haus der Geschichte, Bonn, the Museum of the History of the Federal Republic of Germany. The angle leaves room for improvement, but I had to keep the two custodians out of the frame.

What you see is the rear door!

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Additional Photos by Sven Erich Czernik (Energysavingelk) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 424 W: 1 N: 1255] (5495)
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