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Little Classics News: 4 June 2014

SKODA Popular to take a Literary Journey Across UK

SKODA Popular to take a Literary Journey Across UKSKODA’s first car to appeal to a broad customer base 80 years ago – the SKODA Popular is now a real classic and is to drive through the literary tracks of time across the UK with SKODA’s support.

The automobile enthusiast Zdeněk Vacek embarks on a tour of UK cities that the Czech writer Karel Čapek described in his 1924 work ‘Letters from England’. He will be driving a SKODA Popular Roadster dating back to 1937.

The starting point and destination of the 4000km expedition, taking approximately three weeks, is the Czech Embassy in London. “We are delighted to be able to support this great project,” says Andrea Frýdlová, Manager of the SKODA Museum in Mladá Boleslav. “The SKODA Popular is a milestone in our 119-year history. The expedition, following in the tracks of Karel Čapek, is an excellent advertisement for our brand in one of our key markets,” adds Frýdlová.

The three-week UK tour is also a special tribute to the 80th anniversary of the SKODA Popular. The light and inexpensive model, revolutionary at that time, was first presented to the public 80 years ago in February 1934. It was the Popular that fulfilled the long-awaited dreams of a broad range of customers to own a car. At the same time, the model founded a new successful SKODA generation of vehicles with a contemporary central tube frame (instead of the previous lead frame), OHV engines and more refined technology. Nearly 20,000 of these vehicles were sold between 1934 and 1946.

Karel Čapek also bought a SKODA Popular, specifically for his girlfriend and future wife, the actress Olga Scheinpflugová. Karel Čapek is one of the most important 20th century Czech writers. In addition to his works of prose and science fiction novels, he also wrote numerous travel reports, including the 1924 book ‘Letters from England’, in which the author describes his observations on a trip through numerous cities and regions in the country.

Zdeněk Vacek’s journey passes through selected regions of this trip. He set out from the Czech Embassy in London, stopping at Cambridge, Edinburgh, the Isle of Skye, Glasgow, Bristol and Liverpool, among others. The finish is scheduled for 11 June in London. The Popular Roadster from 1937 is part of the collection of Ladislav Samohýl, a private collector from Zlín.


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