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GAZ » 34

The 3-ton GAZ-34 (6x6) with a cab over the engine looked very similar to serial 2-axle GAZ-66 with an additional third drive axle. It was an attempt of GAZ factory to create a lightweight cabover alternative to bonneted army vehicle ZIL-131. The new truck was planned to use as a medium-duty tractor for towing trailers and artillery. GAZ-34 was by 1.3 tonnes lighter than ZIL-131, half a meter shorter and a flatbed of the same length.

Development of GAZ-34 began in March 1964, when the factory had already begun assembly of GAZ-66 range. The first prototype of GAZ-34 was made that year, and then two prototypes with flatbed bodies and cabs from GAZ-66. Both prototypes went to factory tests and passed a distance of 25 and 50 thousand kilometers. In 1967, another three trucks prototypes were made, which were sent to the next factory and military tests.

For a number of units GAZ-34 was unified with a serial truck GAZ-66A with a winch, but was equipped with a tire pressure regulation system. GAZ-34 was equipped with a V8 petrol engine rated at 115 hp (the same was installed to GAZ-66A), drive axles, drum brakes, all-metal cab, front winch and two fuel tanks with a total capacity of 210 liters. A single-plate clutch was borrowed from ZIL-130; 5-speed gearbox,2-speed auxiliary gearbox and drive shafts - from ZIL-131. The drive of both rear axles was similar to ZIL-157 and had five individual cardan shafts with and intermediate support. Power take-off was also taken from ZIL-157. But the frame of GAZ-34 was original, as well as an all-metal cargo bed with wheel arches and an internal length of 4100 mm (800 mm compared to the GAZ-66), but the same width (2050 mm).

All five GAZ-34 prototypes had some insignificant differences in the design, configuration and characteristics. As a result, the distance between front and middle axles ranged from 3445 to 3453 mm, the wheel base of the rear boogie was 1245 or 1250 mm, overall length - 6425 - 6435 mm, ground clearance under the bridges - 306 - 312 mm. With the average curb weight of 5150 kg total weight of the prototypes ranged from 8260 to 8820 kg. During tests the prototypes tranfered personnel, towed various trailers, mortars, 122-mm howitzers M-30, and even an aircraft An-25. According to test results GAZ-34 has received a positive evaluation and was recommended for the army using. But in 1967 ZIL started mass producing of a similar and more powerful ZIL-131 truck and military interest to GAZ-34 was gone.

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