Rollin' Norwegian Style In the Troll Sportcupe

Murilee Martin
by Murilee Martin

Norway’s automotive industry never got quite as large as neighbor Sweden’s (to put it mildly), but Norwegians can still puff up their chests with pride when they see a Troll Sportcupe cruise by.

Of course, with only 15 made, the opportunity to feel such pride doesn’t come often for Norwegians. I learned about the Troll when a couple of car journalists from Bilnorge showed up at the New England 24 Hours of LeMons race and stated that the Troll would eat up the Adopted From Jets Saab 96, were it possible to find one for a LeMons-level price. The what? we asked.

Yes, the Troll. If you read Norwegian, you can get the whole story at this Troll worship site. The basic outline: it’s a Hanns Trippel (yes, that Hanns Trippel) design, it’s got a fiberglass body, and it’s built on a lengthened Gutbrod chassis. The engine appears to be a Gutbrod 663cc, but according to the Google Language Tools translation from the Norwegian: “There were, however, plans to use the March 1 sylynders SAAB engine that would give 45 hp, and with this it would use a 3-step synchronized gearbox, also from SAAB.”

I’d have a tough time choosing between a Troll, an Autocars Sussita, and a Sofia B, were I to finally indulge my love of cars designed in nations not known for building cars by purchasing one, but the Troll might just have the edge.


Troll-Bilen

Murilee Martin
Murilee Martin

Murilee Martin is the pen name of Phil Greden, a writer who has lived in Minnesota, California, Georgia and (now) Colorado. He has toiled at copywriting, technical writing, junkmail writing, fiction writing and now automotive writing. He has owned many terrible vehicles and some good ones. He spends a great deal of time in self-service junkyards. These days, he writes for publications including Autoweek, Autoblog, Hagerty, The Truth About Cars and Capital One.

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  • Anchke Anchke on Jan 24, 2011

    The Troll tests a bit of received wisdom -- we've all heard it said that styling is subjective. You either like it or you don't. But it's all just personal preference. Okay, but I ask you, doesn't the Troll belong under the bridge?

  • Panzerfaust Panzerfaust on Jan 25, 2011

    What a hodgepodge of design cues. The lower a part of the body from the beltline down isn't too bad, sort of an early porsche with 300SL fender accents, and an Alfa-esuqe front end. But the roof! It looks like they salvaged a bunch of glass pieces (looks like a truck windshield, and a saab rear window) and built the roof around them. Have to admit though, coming out of the factory this already had the look of a LeMon's entry. BTW, that's not really much of a challenge. 'the Troll would eat up a 96 IF you could ever find one."

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  • Rust-MyEnemy Whoa, what the hell is wrong with Jalop1991 and his condescension? It's as if he's employed by Big Plug-In or something."I've seen plenty of your types on the forums....."Dunno what that means, but I'm not dead keen on being regarded as "A type" by a complete stranger"" I'm guessing you've never actually calculated by hand the miles you've driven against the quantity of gas used--which is your actual miles per gallon."Guess again. Why the hell would you even say that? Yes, I worked it out. Fill-to-fill, based on gas station receipts. And it showed me that a Vauxhall Astra PHEV, starting out with a fully charged PHEV battery, in Hybrid mode, on my long (234-mile) daily motorway daily commute, never, over several months, ever matched or beat the economy of the regular hybrid Honda Civic that I ran for a similar amount of time (circa 5000 miles)."You don't use gasoline at all for 30-40 miles as you use exclusively battery power, then your vehicle is a pure hybrid. Over 234 miles, you will have used whatever gas the engine used for 200 of those miles."At least you're right on that. In hybrid mode, though, the Astra was using battery power when it wasn't at all appropriate. The petrol engine very rarely chimed in when battery power was on tap, and as a result, the EV-mode range quickly disappeared. The regular hybrid Civic, though, deployed its very small electric reserves (which are used up quickly but restore themselves promptly), much more wisely. Such as when on a trailing throttle or on a downward grade, or when in stop-start traffic. As a result, at the end of my 234 miles, the Civic had used less gas than the Astra. Moreover, I hadn't had to pay for the electricity in its battery.I look forward to you arguing that what actually happened isn't what actually happened, but I was there and you were not."Regardless, that you don't understand it appears not to have stopped you from pontificating on it. Please, do us all a favor--don't vote."You really are quite unpleasant, aren't you. But thanks for the advice.
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