The first Soviet SUV: The Unknown Story

Popular "Field" (VAZ-2121) for many of our compatriots is actually a synonym for "the domestic SUV." At one time, for the right to be called "the first Soviet jeep" she competed with equally interesting development plant AZLK. Unfortunately, this car has not reached mass production.

8 ph via ru_auto

It all started back in the mid-50s, when the Union started working on the four-wheel drive, comfortable enough for everyday use, "in the civilian world." On the title claim and GAZ M-72 and Moskvitch 410. They were actuated by the same patterns - serial car with a reinforced body, hard bridges with dependent suspension, equipped with transfer case. To conquer the untrodden paths of these machines are suitable, but of no comfort, and can not speak - a very tough course, noisy wheel drive transmission.

Team AZLK (in those years the plant called MZMA, Moscow plant of small cars) under the leadership of the famous engineer Igor Gladilina decided to create a "passenger" all-terrain vehicle with a clean slate. So in 1957 appeared Moskvich-415, which had instead monocoque frame - it was easier, more reliable, more durable. Outside the car was strictly utilitarian, although its Western "peersĀ» (Willys in the US, Toyota Land Cruiser 40 in Japan) have all been designed in a similar style. In 1960 there was a modification of a closed body (Moskvich-416). Prototypes have successfully passed factory tests, but at the time the production capacity MZMA were fully loaded, and the time, and most importantly the desire to introduce and organize the production of the new model was not elementary.

In the early 70's, when the universal niche luxury SUV could no longer vacant, before the country's automotive industry was once again put the same problem. The development of the company at the same time do 3: AvtoVAZ, Izhmash and AZLK. Engineers Moscow plant raised from the archive and has frozen the project in 1973, gathered a prototype called Moskvich-2150, inheriting certain traits 415 th.

"Field" at that time was still at the stage of first running prototypes, and Moskvich-2150 was completely ready for mass production. Unlike VAZ'a development, he increasingly fell under the definition of a classic off-road vehicle: 3-door station wagon with spar frame, rigid beam axle and leaf springs was equipped with an engine capacity of 1460 cc (75 hp) and a 4-speed manual transmission. With a length of 3 to 6 meters, curb weight of only 1050 kg. Ground clearance - 22 cm. The machine had two fuel tanks with a total capacity of 60 liters (one filling is enough for at least 500 km). The rear seat backs reclined - convenient for transportation of bulky cargo. In addition, the Jeep can tow a trailer weighing up to 350 kg. Claimed top speed - 105 km / h. The novelty was also limited slip differential in the rear axle.

In parallel, has been developed and modification of Moskvich-2148 with a body "phaeton" soft-top (left)


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