1898 Daimler Motor Truck

BB 3 Daimler Motor-Truck.jpg
BB 3 Daimler Motor-Truck.jpg

1898 Daimler Motor Truck


The streets of Stuttgart today are filled with traffic. The Mercedes star still dominates the Bahnhof. 130 years ago the motor car was born here. In 1883 Gottlieb Daimler changed the future of vehicular transport in his garden shed in Taubenheimstrasse where, after months of experimenting and assisted by Wilhelm Maybach he built his first successful petrol engine. It had a single horizontal cylinder with a 70-mm bore and 120-mm stroke and a massive flywheel. A year later he applied his engine to a four-wheeled carriage and thus laid the foundations for the motor car. Sixty miles away in Mannheim Karl Benz was working on a similar engine. In 1886 he produced his first 'vehicle propelled by a gas engine'. Daimler produced the world's first petrol-engined lorry in 1896 after five years of experiments. By 1898 a lorry with an engine based on a Daimler 'Phoenix' car of the previous year was manufactured. This had a vertical twin-cylinder engine with a leather-lined clutch, a four-speed gear-box and a chain drive. The body was mounted on a hardwood chassis with elliptical springing and ash-wood wheels shod with steel tyres. The water cooling system was greatly improved by using a fan behind the radiator to provide an independent air flow. An example of this pioneer truck, believed to be the only one of its type in existence, has been restored and is exhibited in the Mercedes-Benz museum, Mercedesstraße, Stuttgart, Germany (the truck in the museum has a proper cowling covering the engine).

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Length: 3.28m (10 ft 9 in)

Width: 1.45m (4 ft 9 in)

Height: 1.68m (5 ft 6 in)

Unladen Weight: 1,473 Kg (1ton 9 cwt)

Payload up to: 1,524 Kg (1½ tons)

Front track: 1.17m (3 ft 10 in)

Rear track: 1.18m (3 ft 101/2 in)

Wheelbase: 1.82m (5 ft 11½ in)

Tyres: Steel

Front and rear springs: Elliptic

Cylinders: 2

Bore: 90mm

Ignition: Low-tension magneto

H.P. 4

Clutch: Leather-lined cone

Gears: 4 forward; 1 reverse;

Final drive: Chain

Max Speed: 8 mph