In this world were all the goods know a short life cycle, it is fascinating to see how these old german pieces of engineering can last for decades, even in the most adverse conditions.
The presence of these cars in western Africa provides the urban landscapes with an original and glamorous touch. The fact that I've also owned a classic Mercedes results in my interest for these automobiles and conversations with the owners, especially when it comes to taxi drivers. During our chat I show them pictures of my old car and automatically a smile is drawn into their faces.
There was a time when the chief engineers-officer had the last word before a car's launch. Now, instead, it is the chief financial officer who decides about the manufacturing of various cars. This makes it even more touching to see how the cars in West-Africa are given a second chance, far far away from their initial homes. 'Because reusing is always better than recycling,' is what most owners tell me.