Ulyanovsk Automobile Plant (UAZ, UAZ) is an automobile manufacturing enterprise of the Sollers holding located in Ulyanovsk. Manufactures four-wheel drive SUVs, light trucks and minibuses.
The history of the company begins in 1941, after the German attack, when the State Defense Committee of the USSR organized the evacuation of the largest enterprises in Moscow. Among them was the Stalin Plant (ZIS), which they decided to send to Ulyanovsk. On October 20, 1941, part of the team and equipment arrived there. At the beginning of 1942, the plant was already producing aircraft shells.
Since the end of 1944, the production of the ZIS-5 was transferred to the plant in Miass, and the assembly of the one and a half ton GAZ-AA started at the UAZ.
In 1949, UlZIS was replaced by the UAZ 300, six of which were demonstrated during the October demonstration. The model had two modifications: the UAZ 300 with single-sided rear wheels and the UAZ 302 with dual-sided wheels. Under the hood was a 50 hp four-cylinder engine. from GAZ M20 Pobeda. It was aggregated with a four-speed gearbox. In 1950, the car successfully passed road tests, but was not put into production because the company was not ready to implement this project.
In 1954, a department of the chief designer appeared at the Ulyanovsk Automobile Plant, which processes technical documentation from GAZ. At the end of the year, the plant produces the first batches of GAZ-69 vehicles. In the spring of 1956, the enterprise was instructed to carry out development work on the creation of new types of vehicles, including a truck, ambulance, minibus and van. The designers have developed a new layout that no other automaker has used. Placing the cab above the engine made it possible to increase the volume of the body, leaving the length at the same level.
In the same year, the company began to export UAZ vehicles to 22 countries of the world, where customers fell in love with unpretentious UAZ vehicles for their reliability and excellent driving characteristics.
In 1958, the assembly of the UAZ 450, based on the GAZ 69 chassis, began. Due to the two-tone color and shape of the radiator grille, it was nicknamed "Magpie". Among the people, the car was nicknamed "Loaf", because its body was solid. She had several modifications. The sanitary modification of the model was named UAZ 450A. In 1959, the UAZ 450V, an 11-seater minibus, was produced. Also came out a flatbed truck with a double cab UAZ-450D and an experimental truck tractor UAZ-450P with a semitrailer UAZ-752. All modifications, except 450V, did not have a rear side door - passengers were boarding and loading goods through the rear doors.
In January 1967, the design assignment was approved, providing for the expansion and reconstruction of the plant. The production of cars was supposed to increase 3.5 times, and in addition, the company planned to launch the production of new models. At the end of 1971, UAZ switched production from GAZ-69 and GAZ-69A to UAZ-469 and UAZ-469B.
These models were equipped with a four-cylinder 2.5-liter power unit from the GAZ-21. The open five-seater body was covered with a removable canvas awning. The side doors received removable metal glazed extensions. Two more people could be accommodated on the rear side. The car's front axle hubs were disconnectable, which saves fuel on a flat road.
In 1976, the design of another impressive vehicle began - the UAZ-3907 "Jaguar". For the creation of this floating car, which developed a speed of up to 10 km / h on the water, the designers of UAZ received government awards. The model had a body with hermetically closing doors, under the floor of which there were two propellers. "Jaguars" were intended for the military and after successfully passed tests were put into service. During the tests, the UAZ-3907 sailed along the Volga River from Ulyanovsk to Astrakhan and back. In 1991, the company stopped working on preparing the model for serial production, since the army did not carry out an order for it.
In 2005, the plant launched the production of a new generation model - UAZ "Patriot". The car already differs in a not so utilitarian appearance as its predecessors. In addition, it was equipped with a completely new suspension, steering and transmission assemblies. 20% of the components used in the transmission are imported. To manufacture this model, the company acquired a new Eisenmann painting complex, a welding line, and also modernized the main conveyor.
Two years later, the model was equipped with an improved heating and air conditioning system, as well as an upgraded engine cooling system.
Soon the UAZ "Patriot" base was used to produce a light commercial vehicle UAZ Cargo. Besides, UAZ "Pickup" is coming out.
Now the Ulyanovsk Automobile Plant continues to develop its line of cars, constantly improving the model range. In 2013, the company increased its export volume by a third, once again confirming the high quality of the vehicles produced.