By on January 24, 2011


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

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22 Comments on “Rollin’ Norwegian Style In the Troll Sportcupe...”


  • avatar
    tech98

    This thing is endearingly cute. It looks like it belongs in that Pixar ‘Cars’ movie.

  • avatar
    scottcom36

    People been dissin’ ya on here, Murilee. But I think this post will have you in the good graces of most of them.

  • avatar

    Murilee,
    The fact that you’d opt for the dorkmobile Sussita, rather than the better-known-among-enthusiasts Sabra sports car shows that you’re a real car guy. I recall riding on the bench seat in the back of a Sussita pickup back in the early 1970s (http://www.aronline.co.uk/images/awisrael_11.jpg). It was a fairly primitive car even by the standards of the day.
    I’m sure that Tal can fill us in on the history of Israeli cars. I think that for a while Ford had a plant there assembling knocked down versions of the Escort.

    • 0 avatar

      I’ve loved the Sussita ever since I heard from two different sources (one Israeli, one Lebanese) that camels like to eat their Trabant-style plastic bodies.

    • 0 avatar

      I think that “camels eat Sussitas bodies” is a bit of an urban legend. I heard it back in the early ’70s when I was in Israel. I can’t say why but it just has the ring of a myth. At that time, Israelis aspired to foreign car brands and tended to put down Autocars’ products. I remember telling a cousin that while the Dodge Dart was a pleasant car it was far from a luxury model (Israeli government officials had Darts as their official cars)

    • 0 avatar
      BlisterInTheSun

      Living in Budapest from 1988-90, I am fairly sure that Trabant bodies were not made of plastic, but rather some kind of pressed cotton.  Instead of rust, the bodies would typically succumb to the ravages of mold. 

    • 0 avatar
      voodoojoo

      Let us also not forget New Zealand’s Kea, an alpine parrot known for eating trim pieces off of parked cars.

  • avatar
    Zackman

    Ha Ha Ha! That thing is really funny-looking in a cool sort of way! Never saw one of those before, but I like the Volvo PV544 the best of all of them. I especially like the old Valiant-like rear end!

  • avatar
    Zombo

    Looks like the offspring of an old Citroen and an Alfa Romeo .

  • avatar
    Philosophil

    What a great looking car. I really like this!
     
    I find it a little odd, however, that people would tend to like this rather odd looking vehicle (at least by modern standards) while at the same time expressing such hatred and revulsion towards a modern vehicle like the Juke. Perhaps it’s okay to like this because this is perceived as ‘quaint’ in some weird, romantic sense,  while the Juke is too modern and new to be quaint. Who knows?
     
    I really think this is an interesting vehicle (but I also like the Juke as well, much to my wife’s dismay).

    • 0 avatar
      Zackman

      Hey, at my age, if I can see out of the vehicle, it has to be good!

      To your comments: Yes, it is very quaint and I don’t believe I knocked the Juke other than the lack of outward visibility of that and many other vehicles. As far as quirky style goes, It took 5 years for me to accept the styling of my 2004 Impala! I, for one, welcome anything different like the Juke, Soul, Xb and others, whether I would by one or not. Variety is the spice of life!

    • 0 avatar
      Philosophil

      Too funny! And I actually agree with you about the visibility thing (both with the Troll and the Juke). Variety is indeed an interesting spice.

  • avatar
    Uncle Mellow

    This thing looks dreadful , and all three pics show different grill treatments. It wasn’t the grill they needed to play around with , it was that back window .

  • avatar
    philadlj

    No need to learn Norwegian. If you have Chrome, it will translate the page into imperfect but passable English.

  • avatar
    rudiger

    Behold, the Nissan Cube coupe.

  • avatar

    Now I know why Eric the Red left Norway for Iceland. It wasn’t because he was banished, as is commonly believed. It was because he took one look at the Troll and realized his countrymen had turned into a bunch of wimps!
    Nor was Grendel killed by Beowulf. Grendel was so humiliated by the naming of this thing after his species that he died of shame.

  • avatar

    OMG! So, this is the reason why the bad boys in Norway preferred to drive pre-war American limousines in the sixties. I’d have done the same.

  • avatar
    Educator(of teachers)Dan

    At least no one  ever backed up in that thing in the broad day light and thought… “I hope there’s nothing behind me.”  Or changed lanes and prayed there was nothing in the blind spot. 

  • avatar
    GeneralMalaise

    Uff da!!! Roofline resembles a certain Renault… can’t remember the model, though.

  • avatar
    anchke

    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?

  • avatar
    panzerfaust

    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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