Rare Rides: The DKW Wagon From 1962 - Deceptive Geography (Part II)

Corey Lewis
by Corey Lewis
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rare rides the dkw wagon from 1962 deceptive geography part ii

Last time, in Part I of this DKW wagon’s saga, we covered a condensed history of the Audi marque. From its inception as Horch, through separation, renaming, and merger into the Auto Union fold, Audi wavered along unsteadily. The company even performed a vanishing act between 1940 and 1964.

In the middle of all this history is our Rare Ride, a tidy DKW wagon from 1962. But all is not as it seems.

You see, something didn’t sit right between the historical timelines presented online and the model year of this DKW. Through a little research, I discovered the model-less wagon in the ad was actually a DKW 3=6 “Universal,” the name of the three-door wagon variant. But the front end looked a little odd, and it turned out that production of the 3=6 ended in 1959. So what gives with this 1962 model — an uninformed seller, perhaps?

Not quite. This photo betrayed one key detail of this DKW: “Vemag S.A.” Those two letters stand for “Sociedade Anónima,” a form of corporation in Brazil. Vemag produced licensed DKW vehicles with slight modifications in Brazil, between 1956 and 1967. The factory in Brazil made several models, which underneath were versions of the 3=6. Production of the F94 version of the 3=6 began in 1958, with sedan and wagon variants. Though initially the models retained their DKW nomenclature, Vemag renamed them Belcar and Vemaguet in sedan and wagon versions, respectively.

Vemag also produced a fiberglass-bodied sports car called the GT Malzoni, which would be the foundation for Brazilian sports car manufacturer Puma (still going today in South Africa).

Turns out what we actually have here is a Vemag S.A. produced DKW Vemaguet. The South American market was the very last place you could buy a new DKW, as Volkswagen wound down the Brazilian operation in 1967. And so concludes the story of DKW branded cars — a long tale for this little German/South American wagon.

It’s yours for just under $24,000.

[Images via seller]

Corey Lewis
Corey Lewis

Interested in lots of cars and their various historical contexts. Writing things for TTAC since late 2016 from a home base in Cincinnati, Ohio. You can find me on Twitter @CoreyLewis86, and I also contribute at Forbes Wheels.

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  • Zipper69 Zipper69 on Mar 11, 2018

    In the late 50's and early 60's DKW cars were often seen in and around London in addition the very stylish DKW two stroke motorcycles were popular. Compared to the pitiful James and BSA singles the DKW's were sleek, with much of the mechanical bits hidden beneath cowlings with leading link front suspension and most of the brightwork in polished aluminum and deeply valanced mudguards.

  • Dukeisduke Dukeisduke on Mar 12, 2018

    It wasn't uncommon back then for cars to be built under license in South America, with cars being facelifted, yet still recognizable. One example would be the IKA-Renault Torino, a '64-'65 Rambler American, refreshed by Pininfarina, built in Argentina by a subsidiary of Kaiser Motors, and later taken over by Renault. Whoa, now I've got a headache. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IKA-Renault_Torino

  • Carsofchaos The bike lanes aren't even close to carrying "more than the car lanes replaced". You clearly don't drive in Midtown Manhattan on a daily like I do.
  • Carsofchaos The problem with congestion, dear friends, is not the cars per se. I drive into the city daily and the problem is this:Your average street in the area used to be 4 lanes. Now it is a bus lane, a bike lane (now you're down to two lanes), then you have delivery trucks double parking, along with the Uber and Lyft drivers also double parking. So your 4 lane avenue is now a 1.5 lane avenue. Do you now see the problem? Congestion pricing will fix none of these things....what it WILL do is fund persion plans.
  • FreedMike Many F150s I encounter are autonomously driven...and by that I mean they're driving themselves because the dips**ts at the wheel are paying attention to everything else but the road.
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  • Stuki Moi "How do you take a small crossover and make it better?Slap the AMG badge on it and give it the AMG treatment."No, you don't.In fact, that is specifically what you do NOT do.Huge, frail wheels, and postage stamp sidewalls, do nothing but make overly tall cuvs tramline and judder. And render them even less useful across the few surfaces where they could conceivably have an advantage over more properly dimensioned cars. And: Small cuvs have pitiful enough fuel range as it is, even with more sensible engines.Instead, to make a small CUV better, you 1)make it a lower slung wagon. And only then give it the AMG treatment. AMG'ing, makes sense for the E class. And these days with larger cars, even the C class. For the S class, it never made sense, aside from the sheer aural visceralness of the last NA V8. The E-class is the center of AMG. Even the C-class, rarely touches the M3.Or 2) You give it the Raptor/Baja treatment. Massive, hypersophisticated suspension travel allowing landing meaningful jumps. As well as driving up and down wide enough stairs if desired. That's a kind of driving for which a taller stance, and IFS/IRS, makes sense.Attempting to turn a CUV into some sort of a laptime wonder, makes about as much sense as putting an America's Cup rig atop a ten deck cruiseship.