Brothers Hubert Joseph and Bill Antony Vincent van Doorne, better known as HubiWim, April 1, 1928. opened a mechanical workshop in the premises of a former beer hall in Eindhoven, where they assembled metal cabinets, windows and stairs.
Soon they began to manufacture horse trailers, tractor trailers, and finally AW car trailers. Since 1932, the company was named Van Doorne Brothers' Aanhangwagenfabriek, abbreviated as Daf, and since 1934 specialized in semi-trailers with four rear wheels mounted in pairs on transverse springs.
In 1936, Daf began converting passenger cars and 2-axle trucks into 6x4 variants, replacing the conventional rear axle with the Trado 2-axle drive bogie, which got its name from the combination of the first letters of the names of the engineer Von der Trappen and the van Doorne brothers. ...
In the same year, the first Daf brand car appeared - an army amphibian MC139 with an absolutely symmetrical shape of the front and rear, a central engine location, all driving and steerable wheels.
The project of the first Daf truck began to be developed back in 1940, and eight years later it was embodied in two experimental cabover vehicles DT5 and DT10 with a payload of 5 and 10 tons with front-wheel drive, a low frame and a streamlined cab with a 4-section windshield.
In 1949, trucks with a more modest cab over a Rosett engine went into production. In a couple of years, the entire family consisted of four basic models with a payload capacity of 3-6 tons with American 4- and 6-cylinder gasoline and diesel Hercules engines with a working volume of 4.0-4.9 liters. and with a capacity of 83-102 hp. or British diesels Perkins, 70-83 hp.
The success of these AW vehicles in Holland and neighboring countries made it possible to increase their production volume from 150 in 1949 to 3,100 units in 1954, to master special and AW bus chassis, and since 1953 to significantly expand the production area of the enterprise.
1957 saw the introduction of the only fully-developed Daf series of bonneted trucks. At first, it consisted of two basic models A12 and A15 with a carrying capacity of 4.5-7.0 tons. Subsequently, new versions - A13, A16 and A18 - were added to this family, which was produced until 1970. It is believed that it was this range that created the characteristic look of early Daf trucks with rounded bonnet sides and a kind of canopy over the radiator grille.
In 1958, the Daf acronym got a new meaning: the company was renamed AW Automotive and became known as "Van Doorne" s Automobile Fabriek. ”That year it created a small passenger model Daf-600. In addition to the 2-cylinder boxer air-cooled engine (590 cm3 ., 22 hp), it was distinguished by the unusual automatic V-belt transmission Variomatic.In the following years, this machine was constantly improved.
In 1967, using the aggregates of the Daf-33 passenger car with a 2-cylinder engine (850 cm3, 40 hp) and a Variomatic transmission, the production of a miniature Daf Pony truck with a gross weight of 1.6 tons began. It could carry 750 kg. cargo and developed a speed of 70 km / h. It was released for only three years.
The aggravation of environmental problems led Daf in 1971 to the so-called Club of Four, which also included Magirus-Deutz, SAVIEM and Volvo. So in 1975-76. the lightweight series F500, F700, F900 and F1100 appeared in the Daf program.
1976 saw the debut of the Daf F2300 trucks with a gross weight of 16 tons.
In November 1971, Daf signed an agreement with International Harvester to expand the program and enter new markets. As a result, in 1973 a heavy bonneted construction dump truck NAT 2505 (6x4) appeared in the program, which was an American Paystar with a Dutch diesel engine DKA1160 with a capacity of 230 hp.
1980s began with the modernization of all previously created AW vehicles. Since the mid-80s. Launch of the new flagship F3600 series with a 373 hp DKZ 1160ATi diesel At the same time, the creation by Daf of unique cargo all-wheel drive vehicles for participation in the Paris-Dakar rally-marathon belongs to the company.
Second half of the 80s. marked by major acquisitions: in April 1987 came into force a contract for the purchase of the largest British manufacturer of commercial vehicles. So the British branch of Daf was formed, and already in December 1986 a series of Daf V400 delivery vans, with a gross weight of 2.8-3.5 tons, were presented, which were a copy of the British models.
In August 1987, production of the new heavy 95 series began at the headquarters in Eindhoven, which was awarded the title of Truck of the Year 1988.
Despite tremendous achievements, the position of Daf since the late 80s. began to deteriorate. In 1993, the British branch of Daf disbanded. In Leiland, the British set up the assembly of their old trucks, and the branch in Birmingham turned into an independent company - LDV. In the fall of 1996, the American engineering corporation Paccar bought out 100% of the shares of Daf, becoming its full owner.
Now the Daf company, producing an average of 25,000 cars per year, remains one of the world's largest manufacturers of medium and heavy trucks.