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Istoria marcii Volga

Da 8 Vizualizari: 42000

volgavolga logoVolga este o marca de automobile, din fosta Uniune Sovietica, construita pentru a inlocui veneratul  GAZ-M20 Pobeda in 1956.
Avand un design revolutionar, a devenit un simbol al mai-marilor statului din fosta nomenclatura sovietica. Masinile Volga au fost de asemenea utilizate ca taxiuri, pentru politia rutiera si ca ambulante in versiunea Estate.
Patru generatii de masini Volga au fost produse de catre Uniunea Sovietica, fiecare model suferind diferite actualizari in cursul ciclului de productie.
Primul model Volga a fost initial dezvoltat pentru a inlocui modelul de mare succes GAZ-M20 Pobeda, o masina de dimensiuni medii produsa din 1946.Cu toate acestea, in ciuda design-ului sau revolutionar, evolutia rapida a acestuia i-a determinat pe designerii sovietici sa prezinte un proiect de inlocuire a acestuia.In 1952 doua proiecte paralele au fost dezvoltate de catre GAZ: Zvezda(stea) care era un fastback futurist cu ferestre panoramice si Volga cu un stil mai conventional dar mult mai apropiata de realitatile de productie din anii 1950.
In primavara lui 1954, prototipurile Volga au incepit sa fie testate in mod activ, noua masina introdicand o serie de avantaje si adaugari fata de Pobeda, in afara faptului ca era mai mare, avea un parbriz si o luneta care oferea o imagine panoramica, un motor cu patru cilindri mai mare, lubrifiere centrala a partilor de baza ale sasiului, cutie de viteze automata hidro-mecanica si tractiune pe puntea din spate.
Designul exterior al masinii a fost proiectat de catre Lev Yeremeev fiind influentat de autovehiculele vestice din acea perioada si in special din America.
Interiorul a fost in mare parte independent cu exceptia cutiei de viteze automata care a fost dezvolata din cea cu trei trepte de pe Ford O-Matic.
Dupa incercari temeinice care au durat 2 ani, dupa cateva schimbari, GAZ a lansat in final o pre-productie in 10 Octombrie 1956.Testele au insumat 29.000 de kilometri de conducere in intreaga Uniune Sovietica.

There were three different models of this generation:

56 Volga - now usually referred to as the "first series" - came into serial production in 1957 and initially had modified Pobeda s flathead 65hp engine, as the planned overhead-valve 70hp ZMZ-21 was prepared for serial production only in summer of 1957. The first series of the M-21 Volga was produced right up to November 1958 during which across 30 thousand such cars were assembled. Today they remain the rarest version of the car, and are highly desirable for car collectors.

58 Volga - the so called "second series" - was introduced in the fall of 1958, the most visible change was the front grille where horizontal chromed bars with a star were replaced by a 16-slit vertical grille, thus earning it the nickname akula ("shark"). Front styling of the "second series" almost mimicked 1954 and 1955 prototypes. Other changes included the shape of the front fenders with raised wheel arches, parking and tail lights. In 1959-1960 minor changes were made to the car s underbody and equipment.

62 Volga - the so called "third series" - was introduced in 1962 and incorporated many external changes, as well as interior and technical improvements. This model was produced with minor modernizations up to July, 15 1970. After 1965 the model was officially named GAZ-21, instead of GAZ-M-21.
Development of the replacement for GAZ-21 began as early as 1961, the new car would have to include a modernised 4-cylinder engine of the old Volga along with a six-cylinder, and an automatic transmission. The latter two plans were canceled and by 1965 GAZ finalised the design with a standard 2.5 litre I4 and a 5.5 litre V8 for the government authorities. In 1966 the first prototypes were demonstrated, and in 1967 the concept car was demonstrated on foreign and domestic Auto show. The first batch of 24 vehicles were assembled in 1968, 215 more followed in 1969 and the main conveyor in Gorky was launched in 1970.The car can be broken down into three generations. The first years (1970—1975) saw changes to many early design faults, bonnet-mounted mirrors were removed, changes to leaf spring suspension, and new ignition
and boot locks. One unique feature that the early series featured was a belt-speedometer, which proved too complicated and was removed. In 1977 the car saw the first serious modernization, this introduced "teeth" on the bumpers, retractable seat belts, front fog lights and new dashboard. The interior of the car saw the front bench seat replaced by two individual adjustable seats. The third generation was introduced in 1985 (see below).
Like its predecessor the car had several modifications. GAZ-24-01, introduced in 1971 was built to serve as a Taxi changes included an artificial leather interior as well as slightly modified engine as the usual taxi equipment. Following the 1977 modernisation, the 24-01 was replaced by GAZ-24-07, which likewise contained taxi equipment. GAZ-24-02 introduced in 1972 was the estate version, production of which lasted right up to 1987, when it was replaced by the GAZ-24-12. An ambulance version with GAZ-24-03 was also built on the estate s version.
The most serious modification however was the GAZ-24-24 which was powered by a 5.53 litre, 195 hp V8 engine borrowed from GAZ-13 Chaika. On top of that it featured a three-gear automatic gearbox, power-assisted steering and reinforced chassis and suspension. This car was never available for private ownership and was used by the KGB services.
In 1982 GAZ introduced the third generation of the Volga the GAZ-3102. However this car was limited to the public and production of the old series continued, lacking a suitable replacement GAZ undertook a deep upgrade of the -24, utilising many of the -3102 features. This resulted in an entirely new car, which was produced right up to the early 1990s.
Externally the changes affected the new model losing nearly all of its chromed detail via a new plastic grill, new "sunken" door handles. The front door windows no longer had corner leafs, whilst new plastic wing mirrors were now featured on both driver and passenger sides. Inside the old ZMZ-24 was replaced with a derived ZMZ-402 engine, which introduced a new carburator and cooling mechanism allowing a 98 hp output (from 85 hp on the -24). The 24-10 received a new suspension which allowed for larger wheels, with a new rim as standard and also had a new set of vacuum amplified brakes. Some of the cars were fitted with disk brakes from the -3102. Inside the car received a completely new interior, based on the foreign models of the 1980s, including dashboard controls and headrests on seats. Like the base -24 the car had several modifications including an estate GAZ-24-12 introduced in 1987, and a low-production V8 powered GAZ-24-34.
The most significant impact of the car was that unlike the -3102 which was sold primarily for state institutions and corporations, the GAZ-24-10 was exactly opposite, which meant that many private owners wishing for a mid-size car could now acquire one with relative ease. However on the whole, even at its introduction the car was very out of date compared with its western rivals and production ceased in 1992. According to GAZ 1,481,561 cars of the -24 series were produced from 1970 until 1992 making it the highest in history of the plant.
In late 1976, a review of the GAZ-24 was tasked with finding out the main drawbacks that would need to be fixed in its replacement, the design of which was scheduled to begin. However funds were never allocated for the project. Simultaneously GAZ launched the second generation of the Chaika limousine. The GAZ-14 in its size and interior jumped the class from its predecessor. Thus instead of replacing the Volga, GAZ was tasked with creating a new vehicle that would be suitable for the mid-class of the Soviet nomenklatura. Loosely based on its predecessor, the new Volga, in addition to receiving a new model number, had much of the Chaika s innovations incorporated in the design.
Initially the model was planned to have a 3-litre V6 engine as standard, but GAZ instead opted for a new ZMZ-4022 I4 with 105 hp (78 kW). The main innovation of the engine was that ignition was accomplished not by a fuse but a jet of heated gases, injected from a special fore-chamber. Despite the high power of the engine, its torque compared to the ZMZ-24 dropped, and by the 1990s the engine was replaced by the ZMZ-402 from the GAZ-24-10. The car featured front disk brakes became standard, as well as 3.9:1 rear axle and many other improvements.
Initially GAZ had ambitious plans for the Volga, and 3102 was intended as an interim version for its completely new 3105, 3106 and 3107 designs. These however would never see light, and despite introductions of -3102 based models (-31029, -3110, see below), production of the -3102 continued into the late 1990s.
Following the introduction of the GAZ-3110, the model received a major mid-life upgrade in 1997. A new 5-step geerbox, single axle, power steering, new front ventilated disc-brakes, 15-inch wheels and modernised interior based on the -3110. Also from the -3110 came the 2.3 litre ZMZ-4062 130 hp (97 kW) fuel-injected engine. Small series production also included Steir and Chrystler engines as well as ZMZ-4064 with 200 hp. In 2005, following the introduction of the GAZ-31105, the -3102 incorporates its interior, and in 2008 its engine standard becomes the 2.5 litre ZMZ-205 which answers to EuroIII standards.
Like its two Volga predecessors, there was limited version for police and KGB, with the Chaika V8 and automatic gearbox, produced up to 1996. Since the early 1990s, 3102 is positioned by GAZ as a luxury saloon and costs slightly more than a standard Volga, it s reputation for quality of 3102 lives up to the price.
By the start of the 1990s, GAZ was in a crises state, with the exception of the -3102, its models were more than a decade old and funds that it hoped to acquire for its future developments such as the -3105 never arrived. GAZ-31029 became a cross-breed of the GAZ-3102 and GAZ-24-10, production of which ceased in 1992. The new model had a more aerodynamic front bodywork. The model was also the first in the series to introduce injector engine ZMZ-4062.10 with four valves for cylinder, although carburetor engines were also available. Also unlike the 3102, the 31029 featured a station wagon. The latter, unlike the sedan, still retained most of the rear styling of the -24 series.
Initially the car enjoyed popularity, given the archaic age of the GAZ-24-10 it replaced, but the economic hardships of the 1990s meant that soon its reputation would be broken by the poor quality of assembly and corrosion problems, and the older 3102, still produced on the special conveyor was soon given preference after it was made available to the public following the collapse of the Soviet Union. Despite this and its short production run, GAZ set a record of more than 115 thousand per annum with the 31029.
GAZ never intended the 31029 to be a permanent model, but with no replacement available, the company opted to continuously modernise the existing vehicle. In 1997, the GAZ-3110 arrived, in the new model, GAZ tried to upgrade the car to a new standard inline with the 1990s trends. Externally all except the door panels were re-styled and replaced, the car received new front and rear designs which saw the return of chrome finishes. Power-assisted steering became standard, along with new 15-inch wheels and Lucas brakes.
A major new feature of the 3110 was that in addition to the standard engine selection of the 31029, was the introduction of two diesel engines ZMZ-560 and ZMZ-561. Moreover beginning in 2001, following the upgrade at GAZ factory itself, the -3110 now received metallic paintwork as standard drastically reducing the corrosion problems that plagued the Volgas.
In 2003 the -3110 received a facelift, and ball-joint front suspension also Steyr turbo diesel engines became available. The estate version of the 3110, the Volga 310221, along with the 310223 ambulance, remains in production as of 2008 along with the GAZ-3102 on its separate conveyor line.
During the late 1980s GAZ developed a concept car for a future replacement for both the business -3102 Volga and the luxury limousine GAZ-14 Chaika. As stated above, the -3102 itself was envisioned as interim project that would fill the void created by the exclusiveness of the -14 Chaika. The new car would leave ZiL to handle the upper class. However the resulting GAZ-3105, which was never to be part of the Volga family, as it would be produced on the Chaika s conveyor (presently still used for the -3102) due to the economic hardships never reached production.
During the early 1990s GAZ managed to survive the crises by having the Volga do a generation jump from the GAZ-24-10 to the GAZ-3110 in 1997. Simultaneously it never abandoned its quest to develop its eventual replacement, and continued designing a new car, which would feature ABS, power steering, climate control, automatic gearbox and most of all V6 and even V8 engines as standard, along with leather interiors. The external design was completely new and featured many GAZ-21 influenced retro styling cues developed in collaboration with US-based Venture Industries.
However problems began mounting in production costs, as some details had to be borrowed from the older models, at least initially such as the Chaika s axle. The pre-production models lacked the automatic gearbox, and the engine was the same ZMZ-4062.10 that went into GAZ-3110. First shown in 1998, production was scheduled to begin in 2000 with 53 cars delivered. GAZ thought of the -3111 as a replacement for the -3102 and envisioned a rate of 25 thousand per annum. But only 342 were delieved in 2001, and 20 in 2002, with further nine of 2004 before all production ceased.
GAZ-3111 was a failure in terms of marketing and demand. Its high base price and poor reputation that the Volga brand carried in the 1990s meant that those who could afford it, would opt for a foreign car such as the Mercedes E-class or the BMW 5 series with whom GAZ-3111 thought to compete.
Faced with the failure to enter the foreign-dominated Executive car market with the GAZ-3111, GAZ learning on its mistakes, opted to continue with modernising its Volga series. Introduced in 2004, the GAZ-31105 replaced the -3110. Many features of the -3111 such as the front headlights and grille were incorporated into the new Volga. Inside most of the car s transmission and suspension received necessary upgrades, as did the interior. In 2006 the standard engine selection was added with a Chrysler DOHC 2.3 litre engine.
In 2005 GAZ introduced a long-wheelbase 311055 luxury model, with a new interior that included a wooden trim. The latter feature became standard on models produced from 2007 onwards when GAZ gave the car a minor facelift. Among changes were completely new taillights and a conversion to Euro III standard with the introduction of its new 2.464 litre 123.8 hp ZMZ-40525 engine, complementing the Chrysler engine, with which the archaic ZMZ-4021 and 4062.10 were phased out. The 31105 is available only as a saloon, with the estate continuing with the old 3110 styling.
Following the introduction of the Volga Siber in 2008 GAZ hopes to fully finish production on both the -3102 and the -31105 by 2010 the base design of both cars still traces its roots to the GAZ-24, thus ending a successful production run of 40 years.
Although GAZ was developing a "spiritual successor" to the 3111, the front-wheel drive Volga 3115, in December 2005 RusPromAvto, the parent company of GAZ, announced that production of Volga passenger cars would be phased out over a 2-year period, with production to end in 2007. GAZ stated that they would instead concentrate on their more profitable truck, bus, and commercial vehicle businesses. At the same time the announcement was made, GAZ also introduced the Volga 311055, a long wheelbase derivative of the 31105. However, in the summer of 2006, GAZ reversed its earlier decision, announcing that further investments would be made in upgrading the styling and technology of the Volga saloons, keeping them in production as "retro" or "historical" vehicles. In early 2006, GAZ signed a deal with DaimlerChrysler to acquire the tooling and intellectual property rights for the Dodge Stratus and Chrysler Sebring  mid-size cars. GAZ stated that the new car would not carry the Volga brand.

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  • avatar
    luca 2012-10-21 02:04:17

    Stimata persoana "bine informata", care ai scris articolul. Cum mama supararii iti permiti sa pui o imagine cu o "CEAIKA", in loc de "VOLGA"? Mai bine fara, decat penibil... Sa-ti crape!

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