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Chavdar (Bulgarian: Чавдар) is a trademark and name of a Bulgarian bus building company in Botevgrad. Founded by Racho Dzhambov, the company that would later become "Chavdar" produced around 200 buses between 1927 and 1947 on chassis from Ford Motor Company, Mercedes-Benz and Dodge. In 1948 the state took control of the property. Later Chavdar models were rebadged and restyled Setras. The company closed in 1999.
In 1924 Racho Valkov Djambazov (1894-1983) opened an iron workshop in Botevgrad, Bulgaria. In 1927 Racho met with Ivan Valkov who had a transport business using rebuilt ambulances. He gave Racho one platform from Fiat and built his first vehicle. On 1 May 1948 Chavdar presented a bus based on Škoda RTO. In 1956 the production of the company increased 150%. An initiative by Vasil Djambov was to produce a ten meter microbus based on Opel.
In 1962 the company started to produce models M65 and M66, which were very popular for intercity traffic. In the same the began producing year small buses based on the Soviet GAZ-51(1962-1969). In 1966 a new engine arrived from the institute.
At the end of the 1960s models M80 and M81 appeared, based on Škoda. In 1968 between 400 to 500 units were produced. That year the factory started modernization. New machines, new work strategy, new workplaces were described as the future success of the company. The company started a new contract with the Setra. In 1974 it started production of models 11G5 and 11M3. They were the company's biggest success.
The minibus 5C was constructed from Kiril Hadjiev and Lubomir Toshev at the end of the 1970s. The bus created a product category called "midibus". In featured a 4 traction system and 14 seats. The first prototypes were tested in 1979. The buses were used from the small towns and villages in Bulgaria as a public bus, school bus and worker bus. The bus were used a Perkins engine.
Chavdar exported products to USSR, Greece, North Korea, Afghanistan and Nicaragua.
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