Minsk Automobile Plant
|Minski Autamabilny Zavod|
|Founded||July 16, 1944|
|Products||Trucks, buses, trolleybuses|
|US$ 167 million (2011)|
|Owner||Belarusian government (100%)|
Number of employees
Minsk Automobile Plant (MAZ) (Belarusian: Адкрытaе Акцыянэрнaе Таварыства «Мінскі аўтамабільны завод», Open JSC Minski Autamabilny Zavod, Russian: Минский автомобильный завод Minskyi Avtomobilnyi Zavod) is a state-run automotive manufacturer association in Belarus, one of the largest in Eastern Europe.
After a decision by the Soviet Industrial command in August 1944, the plant was begun as the Second World War ended. The first MAZ model, the MAZ-200, entered production in 1949. This truck used General Motors-designed two-stroke engines and was a continuation of a truck developed by the Yaroslavl Motor Plant (YaMZ), who also built the engines. Later on, YaMZ's own original engines were developed and implemented in the MAZ-500 series which was first shown in 1955, but only reaching full series production in 1965.
Not only the plant itself, but the entire surrounding town, with infrastructure, were built in a short time. Apartment buildings, shops, medical clinics, cinemas etc. were built in close proximity to the MAZ plant, providing plant workers with local (though limited) necessities. On many of the construction sites German prisoners of war were working together with Belarusian construction workers. The majority of these buildings are still in service today.
It manufactures heavy-duty trucks, buses, trolleybuses, road tractors and semi-trailers for semi-trailer trucks, and cranes. MAZ was, and possibly is, the world's largest manufacturer of TELs (Transporter-Erector-Launchers) for many of the world's mobile ballistic missiles, from the widely proliferated MAZ-543 used to carry and launch the Scud B through to the recent Topol M's impressive 8-axle TEL.
At the end of Soviet times, MAZ was the largest manufacturer of heavy trucks in the Soviet Union, and the only one for some truck categories. After the Soviet Union dissolved, MAZ production was reduced substantially, as has happened with many enterprises in Belarus, oriented on the needs of a very big country. The previously mentioned production of public transport vehicles was a result of following diversification of the company.
Political repressions, sanctions
On 21 June 2021, MAZ was added to the sanctions list of the European Union for repressions against workers who participated in mass protests against the authoritarian regime of Alexander Lukashenka following the controversial presidential election of 2020. According to the official decision of the EU,
"[MAZ] is a source of revenue for the Lukashenka regime. OJSC MAZ has offered its premises and equipment to stage a political rally in support of the regime. Therefore, OJSC “MAZ” benefits from and supports the Lukashenka regime."
Employees of OJSC “MAZ” who took part in strikes and peaceful protests in the aftermath of fraudulent August 2020 elections in Belarus, were intimidated and later laid off by the company’s managements. A group of employees was locked indoors by OJSC MAZ to prevent them from joining the other protesters. Therefore, MAZ is responsible for the repression of civil society and supports the Lukashenka regime.
The association consists of the MAZ plant proper, located in Minsk, which is the main enterprise of the association, as well as several secondary enterprises:
- РУП «БААЗ» (in Baranavichy)
- РУП «ОЗАА» (in Asipovichy)
- РУА «КЗТШ» (in Zhodino)
- РУП «Літмаш» (in Minsk),
- ПРУП «ДЭМЗ» (in Dzyarzhynsk)
- РУП «СтройМАЗтрест» (in Minsk)
At some points of its history, MAZ was "united" with another heavy automobile company - BELAZ also located in Minsk area.
MAZ is 100% state-owned company.
In Serbia, working in cooperation with a local-based company BIK (Bus industries Kragujevac), a production of gas-powered buses named BIK-203 has been agreed, which are based on the platform of MAZ-203 model. These buses have been delivered at several Serbian towns to be in use in public transportation companies.
In 1997, together with MAN, a joint Belarusian-German company JSC MAZ-MAN, was set up, which by 1998 had established full-scale production of heavy vehicles, using the F90 MAN cabs introduced 1986 and replaced in 1994. Production of truck cabs involves huge, expensive tools, making this kind of recycling an existing design attractive. While production of tractors for international trade with 4x2 and 6x4 chassis layouts was a stated goal, development of exhaust gas regulations within the EU turned this into illusion. Based on the MAZ-MAN they have produced concrete mixers, fueling vehicles, flatbed trucks, dump trucks, front-end loaders etc.
Production of the Belarusian-German company demonstrated the advantage of technology created by combining the abilities and experience of auto makers of two countries. Compared to European models in the same class and quality range, MAZ-MAN products are on average 30% cheaper. Currently 98% of MAZ-MAN comply with Euro-3pollution standards, meaning they cannot be exported to the EU; sales to the EU require Euro-5 standards until 2013, and Euro-6 standards since 2014.
In 2004, the joint venture made 272 vehicles, which is 45% higher than 2003. At the same time in 2003, output in comparison with 2002 increased by 50%.
28 November 2005 MAZ-MAN sold 1000 of the first MAZ-MAN tractor to customers.
- MAZ-101 (1993, based on Neoplan N4016)
- MAZ-103 Omnibus (1996, based on MAZ-101)
- MAZ-103T Trolleybus (1999)
- MAZ-104 (1997, based on MAZ-103)
- MAZ-105 articulated (1997, based on MAZ-103)
- MAZ-107 three axle (2001, based on MAZ-103)
- MAZ-152 city bus (1999)
- MAZ-171 Airport bus (2005)
- MAZ-203 Omnibus (2005)
- MAZ-203T Trolleybus (2006)
- MAZ-205 (2009)
- MAZ-206 Omnibus (2006)
- MAZ-226 (2007)
- MAZ-251 (2006)
- MAZ-256 Omnibus (2006)
- MAZ-535/MAZ-537 - The MAZ-535 and the heavier version MAZ-537 were developed in the early 1960s and built to transport rockets and tanks of various types.
- MAZ-543 - The MAZ-543 was also designed for the transport of medium-and long-range missiles and has the same specifications as the MAZ-537. The MAZ-543 is best known as mobile missile launch pad of Scud missiles. In addition, there are various modifications of the vehicle, such as the MAZ-547 as a mobile launch pad for SS-20 missiles or the MAZ-7917 as a launch pad of Topol intercontinental missile.
- MAZ-7904 - The MAZ-7904 is the largest wheeled vehicle that was ever designed for military purposes in the USSR. The prototype was designed in 1982 as a support vehicle for intercontinental ballistic missiles, but never went into production. The vehicle was found in 2007 in a hangar at Baikonur, but was scrapped in 2010 due to severe corrosion.
- MAZ-7907 - The MAZ-7907 is a 12-axled 24 wheel vehicle for transport of ICBMs, which was designed in 1985, and of which two prototypes were produced. At least one seems to have been used after the collapse of the USSR for transportation of bridge parts and ships. Their fate is unclear.
|No||years of release||Features||Photo|
Sponsorship in football
- 1999–2002: Torpedo-MAZ Minsk
MAZ-543 airport tender, airport in Kyrgyzstan
Maz in IRAN
Azhitechs Company manufactures Maz in large quantities in Iran. Maz's success stems from its powerful importer company, which produces the vehicle in Iran exclusively using Mercedes-Benz engines. Azhitechs is one of Iran's leading automobile manufacturers.
- ОАО "МАЗ" - управляющая компания холдинга "БЕЛАВТОМАЗ"
- Schauen, Till (December 2015). "Bau-genossen" [The joys of cooperative building]. Last & Kraft (in German). Vol. 24 no. 1 (December/Januar 2016). Mainz, Germany: Vereinigte Fachverlage. p. 63. ISSN 1613-1606.
- Schauen, p.64
- COUNCIL IMPLEMENTING REGULATION (EU) 2021/997 - Official Journal of the European Union, 21.06.2021
- "Minsk Wheeled Tractor Plant (MZKT)". 2011-05-15. Retrieved 2011-05-15.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-03-06. Retrieved 2016-01-27.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
- Gas-powered bus from Kragujevac at ekapija.rs, 20-4-2009
- MAZ-BIK 203 at Vulović Transport official website
- "Soviet Army Super Vehicles - Ballistic Missile Carriers & other super trucks". 2013-06-10. Retrieved 2013-06-10.
- "Автомодельное бюро: МАЗ-7904". 2013-06-10. Retrieved 2013-06-10.
- Peter J. Davies: Trucks of the World - The encyclopedia of makes and models from 2002. Motor Book, Stuttgart. ISBN 3-613-02257-5 .
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