Multiaxle Motor Vehicle

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Multiaxle Motor Vehicle


a motor vehicle with more than two axles. Multiple axles are used most often on trucks and tractor-trailers and less frequently on buses and trolleybuses. Because of the distribution of the vehicle’s weight over a greater number of axles, such vehicles usually have greater load-carrying capacity and better off-road performance than the two-axle types. However, their purchase and operating costs are higher.

The first attempt at building a multiaxle motor vehicle was made in 1898; series production began in the mid-1920’s at the Renault factory in France. In the USSR, delivery of the IaG-10 multiaxle truck, with a load capacity of 8 tons, was begun by the Yaroslavl Automotive Plant (now the Yaroslavl Motor Plant) in 1932.

Motor vehicles are customarily described according to the number of wheels by the wheel formula, in which the first digit indicates the total number of wheels and the second the number of driving wheels (counting a double wheel as one). They may have three, four, and even five axles. The vehicles of the first group (four axles; Figure l,a to f) are produced in relatively small numbers and are used mainly in geological prospecting operations, in civil engineering, and in military units. Vehicles in the second group (three axles; Figure 1, g to 1) are more common and are used to haul freight on main roads; this group also includes intercity and articulated city buses.

Off-road vehicles (trucks, special motor vehicles, tractor-trailers, and armored personnel carriers) are equipped with all-wheel drive. Some technical characteristics of Soviet multiaxle motor vehicles are given in Table 1.

Off-road vehicles now being developed are mainly of the articulated type, with three to six axles; there is now a trend toward the greater use of the schemes shown in Figure 1, e, j, and k for trucks and those in Figure 1, j and 1 for buses.


Kolesnye avtomobili vysokoi prokhodimosti. Moscow, 1967.
Selivanov, I. I. Avtomobili i transportnye gusenichnye mashiny vysokoi prokhodimosti. Moscow, 1967.

Kratkii avtomobiVnyi spravochnik, 6th ed. Moscow, 1971.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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