The Framo motor works, based in Saxony, started producing cars in 1932. The first cars to come from the factory were innovative, front wheel drive, three wheeled cars powered by DKW engines of 200, 400 and 600cc. Initially the cars had a single, driven, front wheel. The layout was then changed to two wheels at the front, both driven. In 1933 a 4 wheeled car was added to the range, again using a DKW engine, this time a 300cc unit driving the rear wheels, later a 200cc engine was offered. Some of the cars were 'combination' cars which could be converted to a light truck by changing sections of the bodywork. Light commercial vehicles were also made in addition to the cars, and in 1937 the production of cars was stopped and the business concentrated on small vans and trucks.
After the war Framo, being in East Germany, became part of the DDR motor industry, and joined the IFA group in 1948. Framo restarted production of small commercial vehicles, this time powered, by a 3 cylinder two stroke engine of only 900cc which was derived from the unit used in the IFA F9 car. The range of vehicles included van, truck, and bus varients, and they became popular 'work horses' in East Germany.
In 1956 Framo was renamed Barkas and, for a while, Framo vehicles were produced wearing Barkas badges until the new Barkas range went into production in 1962.