Collection Immo Mikloweit

1927, International Automobile Exhibition in Cologne

COLOGNE IS AN AUTOMOTIVE CITY AND IMMO MIKLOWEIT IS ITS EXPLORER

As early as 1877, the first steam-powered motor vehicle rattled through Cologne, followed by the first gasoline-powered vehicle in 1888. After the turn of the century, a short period of electric drive followed; the first cabs and also the first Cologne ambulance and post van were electrically driven (!).

Cologne was the leading production location in Germany at the time. As early as 1864, there was the Otto & Langen engine factory, which was renamed Deutz AG in 1872, where Gottfried Daimler and Wilhelm Maybach worked for a time. The car pioneers August Horch and Ettore Bugatti also worked and developed in Cologne. In 1929, the U.S. Ford Motor Company moved into its location in the Niehl district, which is still used today. Four years earlier, the Citroën company was the first automobile manufacturer to open a plant in Cologne-Poll, where it produced the vehicle that had become famous as the gangster car.

Rusted key of a traction Avant.

In the wasteland of this former Citroën plant in Cologne, Immo Mikloweit found a rusty key at the beginning of the 1980s. It belonged to a
once manufactured there, affectionately known at the time as the Poller Front. Spurred on by the special find, the car expert researched the history and wrote his first automobile book „Citroën-Automibile“ which was to be followed by many more publications.

Immo Mikloweit: 125 Jahre Automobiles aus Köln, 2002. Signatur: MIKL9

The book „125 Jahre Automobiles aus Köln, Autos, Motorräder & Flugzeuge“, published in 2002, was a work in which the range of technical innovations from the history of automobiles in Cologne became visible.

The Cologne resident was also interested in German coachbuilding and car body construction. As part of a collective of authors, Immo Mikloweit was involved in the standard work:  "Auto und Karosserie".

In years of work, the collector Mikloweit has compiled a private archive, which of course also exists in digital form. The creation, indexing and maintenance of this archive on the history of automobiles is the result and basis of his research work. As co-founder and temporary managing director and chairman of the Automobilhistorischen Gesellschaft e.V., the foundation was laid for an indispensable network, for the care and preservation of German cultural assets.

Immo Mikloweit donated his "automobile library" to the USB. The volumes are closed under the signature "MIKL" and are available to all interested parties.

Cologne Citroën badge

BIOGRAPHICAL NOTES

Immo Mikloweit was born in Greifswald in 1945 and moved with his family to Cologne as early as 1948. As the son of a mechanical engineer, he was born with a passion for automotive engineering, and in the 1950s he already explored the site of the Citroën assembly plant, which had been destroyed by bombing in 1944. Later, the trained car mechanic and later master car mechanic worked at the Citroën plant in Porz-Westhoven and held various positions there, including technical plant manager and in setting up the Citroën customer service organization and Citroën construction consulting in the new German states.

In 1983 he founded the "Cologne Historical Aircraft, Motorcycle and Motor Vehicle Picture Archive & History Workshop Immo Mikloweit". Since 2008, the car expert has been chairman of the Automobilhistorische Gesellschaft e.V. (AHG) with its headquarters in Cologne. Immo Mikloweit continues to be loyal to the Citroën company and has been involved as a press and public relations consultant since 2009.

All images with kind permission of Immo Mikloweit.