Thursday 31 March 2011
AZLK (АЗЛК - Автомобильный завод имени Ленинского Комсомола in Russian) was a Russian automobile factory (Moscow), the maker of the Moskvitch brand.
Founded in 1929 as KIM, or Communist Youth International, the plant became MZMA (Moscow Small Car Factory) in 1939, before finally changing its name to the more familiar Avtomobilny Zavod imeni Leninskogo Komsomola (AZLK), literally "Lenin Communist Youth League Automobile Factory" in 1969.
Beginning in 1939, the factory's passenger cars were sold under the Moskvitch ("Muscovite") brand. The plant was originally under the authority of Gorkovsky Avtomobilny Zavod (GAZ – Gorky Automobile Factory) founded at about the same time, but by 1939 it was operationally independent.
AZLK's role under the Soviet system was the production of small cars, which could be classified as anywhere from compact to mid-size. AvtoVAZ and IZh were also charged with producing vehicles in the same category as AZLK, while GAZ handled the large car and full-size segment.
Following privatization in 1991, AZLK adopted Moskvitch as its corporate name, as it had already been used on all of the company's cars dating to 1939.
The construction of the plant called Moscow Car Assembly Factory (Russian: Московский автосборочный завод) began in 1929. In 1930 the production of Ford A and Ford AA from parts that were provided by Ford Motor Company began. In December 1930 the plant was named KIM (Zavod imeni Kommunsticheskogo Internatsionala Molodezhy, Russian: КИМ (Завод имени Коммунистического Интернационала Молодежи) - Communist Youth International, literally "Factory named after Communist Youth International"), from 1930 to 1939 its official name was Moscow Car Assembly Factory named after KIM (Московский автосборочный завод имени КИМ) and then from 1939 until the beginning of the Great Patriotic War it was called Moscow Car Factory named after KIM (Московский автомобильный завод имени КИМ). In 1933 the production of Ford A and Ford AA ceased. On August 1, 1933, the factory became a subsidiary of GAZ and produced GAZ AA using parts from GAZ. In 1939 KIM was no longer the subsidiary of GAZ. In 1940 KIM started to produce their first own model, the KIM 10-50 (two-door saloon) based on the Ford Prefect. There was also a convertible named KIM 10-51. Around 500 cars both KIM 10-50 and KIM 10-51 were made before until the beginning of the Great Patriotic War. In the early 1941 approximately 2 prototypes of KIM 10-52 were built. It was a four-door saloon which was the major difference between KIM 10-52 and KIM 10-50. There were plans for mass production of this car but they were interrupted by the beginning of the war.
- engine: 4 cylinders
- capacity: 1172 cc
- horsepower: 30 HP
- gearbox: 3+1
- top speed: 90 km/h