Simson exhibition in Dresden: Generation Rängtängtäng – Auto & Mobil

In the 1980s, anyone who got off the train in a city like Eisenach and stepped onto Bahnhofstrasse could sense where they were by smell. Like so many places in the GDR, the air in the Thuringian city was characterized by a mixture of lignite soot from house heating and the exhaust fumes from the countless two-stroke engines on the streets. Not only the Trabant and Wartburg were fueled with the petrol-oil mixture, but also the scooters and mopeds from the Simson factory in Suhl. Vehicles like the “Schwalbe” and the Mokick S51 with their characteristic two-stroke sound (“Rängtängtäng”) not only shaped the cities of the GDR, they also determined the mobility of people there and beyond for decades; Exactly 20 years ago, an era ended with the insolvency of the Simson plant. The Transport Museum in Dresden commemorates this time with a special exhibition. And the exhibition organizers explain why the two-stroke engines from back then still fascinate so many people today.

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