Today in China Car History the massive Jiefang CA30 6×6 off-road army command vehicle, Spotted in China at the Dalian Classic Car Museum in the great city of Dalian in Liaoning Province. The truck was in a rather poor condition. Parked out in the open, neglected, dirty and rusty, all but forgotten. That ain’t no way to treat a brave soldier!
Jiefang (解放) means Liberation. Jiefang is a commercial vehicle brand of First Auto Works (FAW). The Jiefang CA30 was the 6×6 off-road variant of the Jiefang CA10, which we met earlier on at the same museum in firetruck form, and then as a water truck in Beijing.
Production of the Jiefang CA10 started in 1956 and continued all the way until 1986. The CA30 arrived in 1958 and was manufactured until 1979. This particular example was born in 1968.
By far the largest customer for the CA30 was the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), but FAW also sold examples to oil exploration companies, construction companies, and forestry services. The PLA deployed many different versions of the CA30, including a flatbed truck, a flatbed troop transport truck, a transport truck, a fuel transport tanker, various recovery vehicles, and the command vehicle seen on these photos.
The First Auto Works Corporation.
The Jiefang CA10/CA30 was developed with assistance of the Soviet Union. It was based on the Soviet ZIS-150 which again was based on the American International KR-11 which was supplied in great numbers to the Soviet Union during WOII under the Land-Lease agreements. So this great American truck became a great Soviet truck and finally ended up as a great Chinese truck, in exactly the same way as the well-known Nanjing NJ230 truck.
Power came from a 5.6 liter six-in-line diesel engine with an output of 90 horses at 2400rpm. Transmission was a 5-speed manual. Top speed of the base CA10 was 65km/h and fuel consumption a whopping 29 liter per 100 kilometer. This heavy 6×6 CA30 will likely drink quite a few liters more.
A command vehicle is basically a mobile command post, from where a commander can direct his troops in the field. Such vehicle is normally equipped with a table for reading maps, seen standing on the right side, and communications gear, which has been removed here. The off-road capabilities of the CA30 gave the high command the added flexibility of being able to hide up in the mountain, enabling troops to hide or to surprise-attack.
Poor old truck in need of a lot of love, but she still got her original mirrors! Note ZAZ 968M in the background.
Massive steel bumper with twin-hooks for pulling lesser vehicles out of the mud. Front lights safely protected for it can be dark up mountain. Brilliant truck!
The Dalian Classic Car Museum is currently closed. The owner of the museum, Mr. Liu Xintian, was arrested and convicted for the murder of his brother. He has been sentenced to death with reprieve. The authorities have impounded all the vehicles and are planning to sell them off. More on this very sad story in a later post.
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