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  • 1943-44 Opel
  • 1943-44 Opel
  • 1943-44 Opel
  • 1943-44 Opel
  • 1943-44 Opel
  • 1943-44 Opel
  • 1943-44 Opel

1943-44 Opel "Maultier" Panzer-Werfer 42 Half-Track

Lot No. 159

Auctioned on Saturday, December 8, 2012

Sold for $ 65,000

Manufacturer: Opel Division of General Motors, Germany
Production Years: 1942-1944
Engine: Opel OHV, 3.6-liter, 75-hp, eight-cylinder, liquid-cooled, gasoline
Transmission: Five-speed: four forward, one reverse
Brakes: Hydraulic
Length: 20-feet
Width: 7-feet, 7-inches
Height: 6-feet, 9-1/2-inches
Weight: Approximately 4-tons
Armor: None
Armament: NONE on this example – Could be fitted with a 7.92-mm MG34 or MG42 machine gun
Maximum Speed: Approximately 25-mph
Maximum Payload: 2-tons
Markings: German Afrika Korps

In 1942, Opel began production of 2-ton Maultier (Mule) half-tracks at their Brandenburg / Havel plant. The Maultier reportedly originated from a field modification carried out by the 2nd SS Panzer Division “Das Reich” during the winter of 1941-1942. Conditions on the Eastern Front, where already poor roads turned to seas of mud during rainy seasons and slush in the spring thaw, created almost impossible transportation situations for the wheeled truck units of the German Army. A standard Ford 3-ton V3000S 4x2 truck was used as the basis of the conversion along with sets of Carden-Loyd tracks and bogey wheel assemblies from captured British Universal type carriers. The conversion comprised of moving the rear axle forward and shortening the driveshaft, reinforcing the chassis and mounting double sets of the Carden-Loyd two-wheel bogie assemblies, along with tracks, to each side of the chassis. The conversion reduced the payload capacity from 3-tons to 2-tons. An additional field conversion was carried out on some Maultiers consisting of mounting a 2-cm Flak 30 or Flak 38 anti-aircraft cannon on the cargo bed. This example is not fitted with armament. Approximately 4,000 Opel Maultiers were built.


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