Elvis Lives! - Well, 'his' filling station was alive & well in the 1990s - KesterTester89 - Updated
Updated: Dec 27, 2022
Located on a major international route, this petrol station was a kind of iconic stopping point for lorry and car drivers alike. I'm pretty sure it's gone now, but where was it?
Photo: Is that a Skoda at the pumps? I think this piccie dates from about 1993-4. One thing for sure, at the time the thought that auto fuel would cost HUF 480 per litre would leave people aghast. (I would guess the price back then was HUF 90 -100.)
And look at that artic truck in the background - part of a massive fleet of lorries that you could see from the UK to Iran and Iraq in the 1960s - 1980s. Still around, of course, but with a different livery-branding and owner.
Send your answers by the site messaging system or in an email to get the chance of much coveted global celebrity status and buy me two beers. Please cite KT89 in your answers.
KT88 is still open for answers, I'll aim to post the winner next week!
UPDATE - New CLUE: Once again, this is proving tougher than I first thought - although I understand it is necessary to be something of an old-timer in Hungary to remember this attraction.
And once again, soft-heart that I am, I've pondered how to provide a new clue without giving away the answer entirely. So, here you go: First, this scene was on Hungary's national route 1. Second (I am 90% sure this is correct) - it was in the "V" of a junction with another important road to one of Hungary's much celebrated cities. (I can't say more than that.)
UPDATE - RESULTS Now KT89 proved quite difficult – at least in terms of correct entries. But by jingo, I came in for a rash of criticism over my communist-era car identification knowledge. Take this, from Sándor Németh: “I have absolutely no idea [of the location]. Mind you, the car at the pump is not a Skoda, it's a Wartburg. That's for sure. Taking a Wartburg for a Skoda is an unpardonable sin! And you call yourself a journalist! Hmmm..” Crumbs, glad you were never my editor, Sándor! You're a hard man! Mihály Mueller was a little more restrained, but had the temerity to demand alcohol in exchange for his correction! (No, it doesn't work this way, Mihály - even though your technical knowledge is impressive!) “This is a Wartburg 353 (two tact [stroke] 993 ccm, 3 cylinder, 45 PS engine) from the GDR, and not a Skoda from Czechoslovakia – a scotch on the rocks to me.” Tom Chilton, for once, did not gripe. “No abuse from me about KT 89. Ah dinna ken and Google isn't helping. I think the car is a Wartburg.” Before meandering off subject: "This fascinating table shows that "extra szuper" 98 octane petrol cost HUF 74.20 in 1993. I might compare some of these prices with current prices and see which have risen the most. A quick look suggests that dairy products have risen most, and meat the least. I guess gas and electricity have also risen a lot but I dunno what they cost now. Yer auld buddy,” I think you can do a guest post on price inflation since 1993 with that, Tom. Meanwhile, Mihaly Mueller had more to say on the “Elvis” branding of the petrol station – which I must say, I hadn't twigged in all these years, and is rather clever.
“The pump station name ’Elvis’ is a cheap pun: it is pronounced elvisz (meaning in Hungarian: [it] takes you on/somewhere). So if you fill up your car, you’ll be on the road again. Another scotch on the rocks to me.”
Hey, Mihály, you're getting carried away. The drinks are always for ME, if you are so lucky as to get the correct answer AND win the draw! (Good grief, the cheek of youth.)
He continued: “No clue on the whereabouts – maybe Abda, close to Győr? Drinks depending on [whether] my guess was right or wrong.” Hmmm. Next in was Robert Brooker, he of New York Bagel foundation fame. “Elvis Park! En route to Vienna. There was an airplane converted to a cafe, where I used to sip cappuccinos. Great memory Kester! Well, it's a long way between Budapest and Vienna! I think you've got to be a bit more specific than that to get into the EU-approved Black Woolly hat, Robert.
“As I recall, it was on the main road from Bp to Vienna, the M1? Not far from Gyor, on the Hungarian side of the border. Is that enough specificity?"
Now please don't get upset, Robert. This is a famed, global competition, watched carefully by milli... well, thous..,OKay, hundreds, and I have to have some standards, even if I get abuse for it. Hubert “Poirot” Warsmann loves a good sleuth, and is not a competitor you can keep down for long.
“KT 89: I don't recall the petrol station, but I seem to recall an Elvis Park on road 1, just before getting in Gyor when traveling from Vienna, before the M1 completion. It was kind of a roadside rest and services area and I believe the main attraction was a restaurant built around an old Malev plane. Very kitsch, very Elvis!” Bob Dent was also sleuthing with attitude and oozing specificity (Robert, please note). “I reckon this filling station was situated a short distance from Györ on Road 1 leading to Hegyeshalom and the border with Austria, by the junction with Road 85 leading to Sopron. This was on the then main route between Budapest and Vienna. Bob." Finally, we had John Cantwell, who wrote in after I had added a clue.
“Hi Kester, I think I’ve found it, and curiously enough it’s a spot that I have passed by dozens of times, but the station is just slightly out of view from the direction I usually travelled. So it’s near Győr, at the junction of routes 1 and 85 (which leads to Sopron). It seems that the hotel next door is still called Elvis Hotel. There also used to be an aeroplane nearby that had been converted to a restaurant.” So, all in all, five numbers went into the hat – yes, I had sympathy for Mihaly Mueller, in spite of his drinks demands (Abda is the next village up the road to Vienna) and even forgave Robert Brooker his technical road error (the M1 had not been built there at the time, Robert). So it was that, earlier this afternoon, Mrs Eddy, trembling from stage fright and sweating from the heat of the many camera lights, drew out of the EU-approved Black Woolly Hat the magic number … FIVE! Step forward John Cantwell for a life of global celebrity and continual demands for selfies from people you've never seen before!! Ah, the results of fame! True, it does seem a tad unfair in some ways, because the first four contestants pitched in without the extra clue. (So sorry Mihály, Robert, Hubert and Bob – you can all feel 'moral' winners). Now, don't forget KT90 – A Nice Leg of Pork, Sir? - I'll aim to do the draw for that around New Year's Day. Please remember to put KT90 in your text somewhere, please.
Till then, Happy New Year!