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 "Volga" GAZ-21 Third series ("Волга" ГАЗ-21, III серия)

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 Manufacturer  GAZ (Gorky Automobile Plant)
 Model name

"Volga" GAZ-21 Third series ("Волга" ГАЗ-21, III серия)

 Years of production 1962 - 1970
 Body style 4 door sedan, 5-6 passenger
 Body style

4 × 2, rear-wheel drive


 ZMZ-21/21A, 4 cyl. 2.45 L. 70/75 hp.

ZMZ-21E/21D, 4 cyl. 2.45 L. 75/80 hp. (export).

 Transmission 3-speed manual
 Max speed  130 km/h.
 Fuel tank capacity  60 L
 Fuel consumption  13 L / 100 km.
 Dimensions 4770x1800x1620 mm.
 Cargo capacity 500 kg.
 Curb weight 1460 kg.












 The GAZ M21 Volga is an automobile which was produced in the Soviet Union by GAZ ("Gorkovsky Avtomobilniy Zavod", in English : "Gorky automobile factory") from 1956 to 1970. The first car to carry the Volga name, it was developed in the early 1950s. Volgas were built with high ground clearance (which gives it a specific "high" look, contrary to "low-long-sleek" look of Western cars of similar design), rugged suspension, strong and forgiving engine, and rustproofing on a scale unheard of in the 1950s.

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Three series GAZ-21 were released, most easily distinguished by the grille. The First Series (1956–58), known as the Star, featured a lattice of three large horizontal bars in the centre of which was a medallion with a star. Vehicles of the Second Series (1958-1962), known as the Shark, featured a grille with 16 vertical slits.

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The Third Series, known as the Baleen, was produced from 1962 to 1970. The 1962 models dropped the leaping deer hood ornament, and had a new grille. It used a 6.7:1 compression engine of 75 hp (56 kW; 76 PS) with an optional 7.65:1 compression of 80 hp (60 kW; 81 PS) (usually reserved for the export models). The headliner changed from cloth to vinyl, and the radio became optional. It was offered as the standard M21L, M21T taxi, and right-hand drive M21N export model.

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Also in 1962, GAZ advertised a station wagon/estate model, the M22; most of these were exported or reserved for official use. The first station wagons/estates were delivered in 1963, and were designated M22 (75 hp (56 kW; 76 PS)), M22G (export, 75 hp (56 kW; 76 PS)), M22T (export, 85 hp (63 kW; 86 PS)); ambulances were M22B (75 hp (56 kW; 76 PS)) and M22BK (85 hp (63 kW; 86 PS)). An M22 prototype four-wheel drive station wagon/estate was also built, as was an M22A van.

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The car's large size and tough construction made it popular in the police and taxi trades, and V8-engined versions (designated GAZ M23) were produced for the KGB. An automatic transmission was briefly offered in the late 1950s, but later discontinued due to lack of service stations, and then through the 1960s on the KGB's V8 version only, with the driver's controls being very similar to the discontinued "civil" automatic.

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The Volga M21 was produced in saloon form from 1956–70 and station wagon form (GAZ M22 Universal) from 1962–70. Today, it is considered a motoring icon with fans all over the world, including at least a handful in the USA (one having appeared in 1999–2001 in Boston.)

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"Volga dvadtsat' odin" ("Volga Twenty One" in Russian) was produced nearly as long as the Citroen DS, and played the same role in Russian automotive culture: a legend-on-wheels. But it became quite outdated by the 1960s, leading the GAZ to develop a boxier, more modern replacement. In 1970, the M21 platform was discontinued by GAZ. Until the late 1970s, however, spare parts were produced by different plants all over the USSR, and some plants were re-building M21s using spare parts, wrecked and junked cars. In 1988, about 80,000 M21 Volgas were registered in the USSR.

(From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)



© Tbilisi Automuseum. 2019


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