Mittwoch, 12. Februar 2014

The Borgward Isabella of my grandparents

Have you ever heard about a car with the enchanting name ISABELLA?

Or about the car manufacturer Borgward?

Borgward was a German automobile manufacturer founded by Carl F. W. Borgward. The company was based in Bremen, northern Germany The Borgward group eventually produced four brands of cars: Borgward, Hansa, Goliath and Lloyd.

Last year we had a meeting of classic Borgward cars in the courtyard of Bad Mergentheim palace. Dozens of Borgward automobiles - most of them in a really good condition - came together in my hometown on a sunny early summer day in June.

Production of the Borgward Isabella began in 1954. The Isabella would become Borgward's most popular model and remained in production for the life of the company. In 1959, the Borgward P100 was introduced, equipped with pneumatic suspension.

Although Borgward pioneered technical novelties in the German market such as air suspension and automatic transmission, the company had trouble competing in the marketplace.

In 1961, the company was forced into liquidation by creditors. Carl Borgward died in July 1963, still insisting the company had been technically solvent. This proved to be true in the sense that after the creditors were paid in full, there was still 4.5 Million Marks left over from the business.

The Borgward cars were known for their beauty and elegance.
The advertised launch price of DM 7,265 was higher than that of competitor family sedans from Opel and Ford, but significantly less than Mercedes Benz was asking for their 180 model.

The testers described the modern structure of the car in some detail: they particularly liked the wide cabin with its large windows, and they commended the effectiveness of the brakes.

The inclusion of a cigarette lighter and a clock also attracted favourable mention! ;-)

Nowadays you normaly see none of these cars anymore on German roads. With the exception of some classic cars' rallyes taking place in summertime.

But I remembered I already had seen a photo of one of these Borgward cars together with some family members. So I began the search for this photograph...

...and here it is!

The Borgward Isabella of my grandparents!

(Grandpa always drove beautiful cars... ;-)

The photo was taken by my grandpa in the garden of their house.
I assume it has been taken between the years 1958 and 1960.

And left of the Borgward you can see one of my aunts (the little girl), my mother and their mother - my grandma.

What a pity my that grandpa sold the car later... ;-(


  1. Wow - those are so pretty!! Much more beautiful than our boring gray family Kia. :D

    My grandfather drove only Volvos. ;) And when I was a kid my parents had Ford Taunus, no seatbelts on the back seat..those were the days. :D Four kids and I sat on my bigbrothers lap, I'm the youngest. Very safe. ;)

  2. Beautiful vehicle! I love the family photo with your grandfather' car.

  3. Very interesting...I've never thought of the history of the cars my family drove...there have been a few. Nice shots :)

  4. Borgwards! Richtig - ich erinnere mich! Was für schöne Autos! So elegant .Tolle Fotos , vor allem das Familienbild!

  5. Great collection of borgwards and so wonderfully detailed, they look elegant and charming! My favorite is the signature fish in one of those pictures, pretty delicate and the family picture with your grandpa's car is a treasure. Glad you could find it and share it with all of us here! :)

  6. Isabella is a beautiful name, some people might have fallen in love with that car as if like their lover. Borgward is new to me. Their cars are classy and elegant. Nice to see you in the seventh image, Uwe.