The lost ark found!!

Several years ago I purchased a May 1944 Popular Science magazine because it contained an article about the VW Beetle and a Kubelwagen captured by the Americans in North Africa.  A shot of the Kubel from that article is below.

(Click on the picture to see the full article.)

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I always wondered where the Kubelwagen in the article went after it was tested.  Was it scrapped? Sold? Or was it hidden in some archive of lost vehicles?  Well the last option turned out to be the case.  Much like the Ark of the Covenant being warehoused at the end of raiders of the Lost Ark, this Kubel was warehoused in an army archives of ancient and interesting vehicles.  A friend was curator at Aberdeen Proving Grounds museum when they were moving the collection and he took us behind the scenes.Image

Okay, so I may not be smiling but believe me, I was ecstatic when this photo was taken.  I had been curious for years as to where this little Kubelwagen had gone.  Look at the photos and compare with the photo from 1944.  You will see the same small headlights, and that the missing doors were replaced with flat steel.Image

The Kubel is well preserved but sadly at one point had EVERYTHING painted over.  This possibly preserved the canvas but did make a bit of a mess.Image

When I last saw the captured Kubelwagen it was in good company with this nice Schimmwagen.Image

And this rather amazing halftrack also captured in North Africa.Image

In the time since I took these photos the once amazing Aberdeen Proving Ground collection has been dispersed.  I have no idea where these vehicles are now.  What is truly sad is that the amount of money the Army wasted on moving everything could probably have built a nice facility for the vehicles to be displayed in.

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