In 1929 Opel AG was bought out by General Motors company, becoming its fully owned subsidiary.
Opel company, with its well-established position in the market, came up then with a new design of a lorry, which was to suit a wide range of customers, including the army. The “Blitz” prototype was first presented in 1931, and in November 1935 the first serial-production Opel “Blitz” lorries were delivered on order.
The Opel company in large part owned the success of its new product to the German army, where the “Blitz” soon became a mainstay of the military load carrier fleet. The most popular type of the “Blitz” was the three-ton “S” sub-variant (S = Standard) with the 4x2 chassis configuration and the engine of 3.6 litres capacity.
The popularity of the type stemmed from its widely acknowledged reliability. Its relatively simple construction enabled creating variety of purpose-built versions. Since the general purpose version was manufactured in great numbers (from 1935 on), there was abundance of spare parts, which was an all-important factor at war. Overhauls and repairs were thus easier and less time-consuming.
The vehicle presented in this publication is the Opel 3.6-6700 A type (A = Allradentrieb or All Wheel Drive), produced in 1944. The production of the 4x4 version commenced in 1940. The four wheel drive vastly improved the vehicle’s cross-country performance, where overcoming mud was an ever-present problem. Overall, some 25,000 “Blitz” lorries in two-axle drive combination rolled off assembly lines, which never fully satisfied the German army’s needs. Increase in the production numbers proved unfeasible due to shortage of various components.
The basic differences between the 6700 “A” and “S” types were the former’s wheelbase shortened by six inches (ca. 150 mm) and the differential gear mounted on the front axle. The four wheel drive was activated by a lever located in the driver’s cabin. The driver had a choice of ten forward speeds and two reverse.
The Opel “Blitz” could cross fords up to 500 mm deep. Its maximum speed on roads was 80 km/h and the fuel consumption averaged 30 litres per 100 km. It was powered by a six-cylinder 3.6 engine developing 75 horsepower. The general purpose version was usually fitted with an open cargo bay, with benches running on its either side for carrying troops. The chassis was adaptable for various special variants, including a radio van, an ambulance or a field kitchen.
The vehicle presented in this publication is owned by Mr Kazimierz Kiczyński. He acquired it in 2001. The vehicle is fully serviceable and demands only routine, periodical overhauls. It complies with public traffic regulations and for this sole purpose it is fitted with additional lights, e.g. indicators.
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