Classic Cars / Bedford

Bedford History


This is the history of the brand Bedford since the establishment of the company and up to the most modern of vehicles produced under this brand.

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Cars "Bedford" are among the most well-known British trucks, although neither in appearance nor the originality of the designs they never stood out among all the other machines. In practice, it was versatile and unpretentious "workhorses", which was to be found in every corner of the British Isles and the world.

Early years of the "Bedford" associated with the known iron foundry and engineering company Vauxhall, based in the middle of the last century in London's Vauxhall. In 1905 she moved to the city of Luton, Bedfordshire, which began producing cars. In difficult for firms 20s. American concern General Motors, has long intended to create in Britain a springboard for the invasion of the European market, the company became interested in "Vauxhall" and in 1925 made her its British subsidiary. Plans to consolidate the European market and the sector also covered trucks. These activities began with imports to the UK trucks Chevrolet, and in the late 20's. at the factory in Hendon began their assembly.

In 1931, the American government has decided to deploy the country's own production of light trucks that are adapted to the requirements of the UK market. Their name was "Bedford" - the title the next town and the whole county, where the plant. The new production was the cargo space of "Vauxhall". Reliable and fast cars "Bedford" were a great success and soon became popular in all kinds of transportation. Thus was the motto of "Bedford" - "You see them everywhere," which is quite untrue. First appeared 2-ton machine "WHG" and "WLG" with a wheelbase of 3330 mm and 3990, respectively, which were priced very cheap - only 198 pounds, followed them fired light vans "VY" and "VX", 1,5-ton series "WS" and 3-ton truck "WT". They established a 6-cylinder OHV gasoline engine (3177 cm3, 44 hp, for a series of "WT" - 64 hp), a rare at that time in Europe, four-speed synchromesh transmission. The first "Bedford" of its own in 1934, became a light van "BYC" carrying capacity of 600 kg, recognized by contemporaries of the best delivery truck in its class. Later on passenger chassis "Vauxhall" produced a whole family of parallel light vans and pickup trucks series "AS", "NS" and "JC" on the 250-600 kg of cargo.

In 1939, "Bedford" introduced just three new series of 2-axle vehicles bonnet "K", "M" and "O" with a more modern appearance: flat radiator grille and rectangular cabin gave way to sleek lines and rounded forms. The first cars were carrying capacity of 1.5-2.0 m with a standard wheelbase of 3050 m series "M" carrying capacity of 2 ~ 3 tons offered with two wheelbase 3050 mm and 3630. The largest known example car series 'O' capacity 3 ~ 5 m, which were issued in 13 designs with two wheelbase.

Using the American principles of harmonization and standardization, equip them with the same 6-cylinder engine with increased up to 72 hp power, mechanical 4-sgupenchatoy transmission, a type of rear-axle, leaf-spring suspension and the same hydraulic brakes. On models carrying capacity of 3 tons used vacuum brake booster.

Not yet had time to deploy mass production of these machines, as they had to be urgently re in military options. The main was a series of "O" on the basis of which produced trucks models "OXD", "OYD" and "OWS" with a payload of 1.5-5.0 m, is a specific flat facing the front, which has become a kind of identification mark. The most famous army option series "M" was an easy pick-up "MWD" carrying capacity of 750 kg. Since 1941, "Bedford" produced 3-ton model "QLD" (4x4) with cab-over-engine and 8-speed transmission.

After the war, the production line "Bedford" were to go back pre-war development of civilian vehicles. On the chassis of cars "Vauxhall 14NR" let the van "JCV" carrying capacity of 500 kg and a series of "K" was only 1.5-ton version of "KD". Range of "O" were divided into two groups - "OLA" and "OLB" with a payload of 4.3 and 5, respectively, that are also offered korotkobazny tractor "OSS". In 1947, the production line "Bedford" went 500000th truck.

In 1950 there was the first new development - the so-called Big Bedford - 7-ton truck "S" series polukapotnoy layout with a very elegant for its time round cubicle with chrome grille. Three years later, this scheme offered in four variants: on-board model "SSZ" and "SLZ", respectively, with a wheelbase of 2.9 and 4.0 m, tractor "SA" with the base 2.2 m-wheel-drive truck "R "(4x4). They are used in-line 6-cylinder diesel engine (4927 cm3, 110 hp), 4-speed transmission, hydraulic brakes with vacuum booster, hypoid final drive. Cars developed a speed of 80 km / h In 1953, a series of "O" replaced by a new bonnet 76-strong range of "TA", which consisted of numerous models with capacities of 1.25 ~ 5.0 t

In 1952 there seems to be inconspicuous in the event of "Bedford" - in his program was introduced a specially designed light box "CA" polukapotnoy build capacity of 500 ~ 750 kg, distinguished by distinctive appearance. A car with a wheelbase of 2286 mm received all-metal frame mounted on the spars, with a capacity of 4.6 m3 body with side sliding door (a rarity at the time) and flaps, closing the niche rear wheels. It used the overhead valve engine displacement of 1507 cm3 and a power of 40 hp from the popular series of passenger Wyvern, synchronized 3-speed gearbox, independent front lever-spring suspension. It was a huge success in urban traffic and produced about 20 years.

In 1958, the bonnet series "TA" has been replaced by a new "TJ", the design of which was made in the same style. Gamma consisted of a unified model of "human trafficking" to "TJ6" capacity 1,75-6,0 that feature a series of "TJ" have special vans carrying capacity of 1.5-1.75 m and a capacity of 13.5 m3 Cab-over engine. It was such a machine in 1958 received the one millionth number.

In 1960, to replace the "S" series introduced a brand new range of "TK" carrying capacity of 7.3 tonnes with a shifted forward and extended low-lying cabin. It housed the rear engine capacity of 98-138 hp

Subsequently, the full weight of cars in this series has been increased and ranged from 5.5 to 12 tons, it includes numerous special versions with wheel arrangement of 4x2 to 6x6 and the base of 2500-4950 mm, intended purpose or for a delivery mission-heavy work on the ground . In 1966, "Bedford" was first introduced in its program of heavy machine series "KM" full weight up to 24 tons with a new diesel engine power of 143 hp Two years later came the variant with the wheel formula 6x2, and in 1972 - the tractor to work in the trucks GVW 32 tons By this time the British car design has become increasingly felt the impact of internal cooperation among the members of the group "General Motors" including the European branch of the Opel and partly owned by his Japanese firm Isuzu.

In parallel, continued to improve light trucks. In 1964, on the basis of popular small cars Vauxhall Viva began manufacturing vans and pickups, "ON" carrying capacity of 300-500 kg. In 1969, the well-known series "CA" has replaced the gamma "CF" with a payload of 900 kg to 1.75 m with a diesel 1.8 liter, made in the American style, inspired by the "Chevrolet." In the early 80's. new series "CF2" of the four models (from "250D" to "350D") GVW 2.3 ~ 3.5 m with a monocoque body, side sliding door and substantially redesigned. Now they are more like the typical Western European developments. They used a 4-cylinder petrol engines "Vauxhall" (1859 and 2279 cm3) and diesel "Opel" (2263 cm3, 61 hp), 5-sgupenchatuyu synchromesh transmission, front disc brakes and independent suspension.

In 1980, a series of "TC" added the range of "TL", has a more stringent design and use of fold-up cab-over-engine. In 1986, the most powerful representative of the range - 3-axle dump truck "TL2440" (6x4) full weight 24 tons - was one of the last car, wearing brand "Bedford." But despite the economic backwardness of Great Britain, by 1980, to "Bedford" remained fairly prosperous. On his account has already been issued 2,000,000 trucks and 1 million different vans. Up to 70% of total production is exported to over 100 countries worldwide. "Bedford" has been one of the leading manufacturers of commercial vehicles in the country.

In 1974 began the introduction of the heavy range "TM" for the long haul. Its foundation is the single models "TM1700" (4x2) and "TM2600" (6x4) total mass of 17 ~ 26 m with a wheelbase of 4070 to 5230 mm and 2-axle truck tractor "TM3250". In addition to diesel engine "Bedford" (8.2 liters, 208 hp), they used the American 2-stroke Detroit Diesel V6 engine cylinder capacity of 9 liters and 235 hp, and the 2-disc clutch, BoE, 9-speed gearbox "Fuller" (Fuller), Rockwell drive axles and front suspension on the 2-leaf springs. In 1983 they added tractors "TM3400" and "TM3800" cab with a sleeping place for long-haul routes to continental Europe. The most powerful and perfect representative of the "Bedford" in its history was the tractor "TM4400-8V" (4x2) with a new cabin with a flat floor and two beds. It established a two-stroke engine "Detroit Diesel" V8 turbo (12 hp, 445 hp), a 13-speed gearbox, suspension, parabolic leaf springs and disc brakes on all wheels. As part of a combination gross weight of 38.2 tons of car expended 35.3 liters of fuel per 100 kilometers.

In the early 80's. manifest danger of falling demand and revenues. In 1985 he began reducing staff and it was announced that the "Bedford" has suffered losses of 11 million pounds. The general loss by this time amounted to 73 million pounds. In the factories, "Bedford" in Luton and Dansteyble was introduced shorter working week.

Meanwhile, the "Bedford" was trying urgently to expand its program due to a delivery truck running. In 1984, under the brand name "Bedford" has begun production of two light vans and Rascal Midi, are copies of Japanese cars Suzuki Super Carry and "Isuzu WFR". These were the small "Bedford": the first was just a load capacity of 650 kg, while the wheelbase - 1840 mm. "Midi" with a payload of 1.1 tonnes had a total weight of 2.5 tons and Japanese petrol and diesel engines (1817 cm3, 76 hp and 56 hp 1995 cm3). New products do not bring the expected salvation of, and production of all cargo wikis "Bedford" was unwise limo reduced until The published most of them were wasps ciency.

In 1986, had to make a painful decision to leave "Bedford" from the market are heavy) trucks. In November 1987, for the waters in Dansteyble together with the rights to unreleased range of trucks bought; firm All Wheel Drive Ltd. - Reduce schenno AWD. She managed to be extended production of 2 - and 3-axle crane series "TL" and "TM-branded" AWD "i just over 6 years, after which she ra zorilas. In 1992, the brand" Bedford "revived light sensitivity mechanical engineering group Marshall of Cambridge, food production lavshaya Freight Cove their new office there comes a family of "RL full weight of 13-26 tons, equipped schennoe 6-liter Perkins diesel engines ranging from 130 to 300 hp.

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