Military Review

Experienced all-terrain vehicle ZIL-49042

In the early seventies of the last century, the Special Design Bureau of the Plant. I.A. Likhachev was engaged in the development of a new version of the search and evacuation complex, designed to assist the landing cosmonauts. In future projects, it was planned to implement new ideas that required verification. One of the tools for studying the proposed technical solutions was the experienced amphibious all-terrain vehicle ZIL-49042.

It should be noted that the process of modernization of search and evacuation complexes started back in the late sixties, when the development of the PEU-2 / ZIL-5901 machine began. In 1970, a prototype of this model was put to the test and proved to be the best. Nevertheless, such an amphibious all-terrain vehicle had a serious drawback in the form of unacceptable sizes and masses - they were associated with the simultaneous presence of a cargo area and a passenger cabin. An excessively large car could not be transported by a military transport aviation, which seriously reduced its real potential. PES-2 was not accepted for supply, and the main conclusions made during its inspection formed the basis for new projects.

All-terrain vehicle ZIL-49042 after repair and restoration. Photos of the State Military Technical Museum /

According to the results of tests for PES-2, it was determined that the prospective search and evacuation complex should include at least two ultra-high-pass vehicles. On one, it was proposed to mount a crane and a cargo platform to evacuate the descent vehicle, and the second was to receive a habitable compartment and become a real home on wheels. All this allowed to solve the tasks, but it did not exclude the transportation of equipment by air.

Taking into account the operating experience of serial and experimental equipment of existing types in the early seventies began the development of new models. The prospective search and evacuation complex, in which several machines were supposed to be put in at once, was given the designation PEK-490. It is easy to see that the figures in this designation correspond to the Soviet system of indices of road transport. The number “490” indicated that the new samples would fall into the category of special vehicles with a gross weight within 8-14 t.

When developing a new "space" technology, it was planned to use both already known and new solutions. Developing new ideas, both independently and in conjunction with existing ones, required the construction and testing of special prototypes. It was for this purpose that the project was launched under the designation ZIL-49042. This machine was not considered as a full-fledged replacement for the existing PES-1 systems, but it should have had a very noticeable effect on the further development of special equipment. A.A. was appointed the lead designer of the new project. Solovyov.

Rover on trial. Photos of the State Military Technical Museum /

One of the objectives of the new projects was to facilitate the design of the all-terrain vehicle while maintaining all the basic features. Such goals were set before the experimental project ZIL-49042. A machine of this type, while retaining some of the features of its predecessors, should have received lighter devices. A reduction in curb weight would result in some advantages over existing technology. The most successful technical solutions proposed and implemented in the new project could be used to create new amphibians designed for full-fledged operation.

In terms of overall architecture, the new all-terrain vehicle was similar to previous machines for search and rescue structures. The basis of the machine ZIL-49042 was a welded frame of aluminum profiles with fasteners for the installation of all major components and assemblies. On the frame was fixed displacement hermetic housing made of fiberglass. It had a rounded lower frontal area, reinforced by several longitudinal ribs. Through rounded surfaces, such a forehead mated with vertical sides. The latter had cut-arches for large wheels. Behind the body had a pair of inclined sheets close to the rectangular shape.

Above the fiberglass "boat" was the upper part of the cabin with advanced glazing. Behind the cockpit there was a shroud of lower height with sides rolled inward. He served as the engine cover. In front of the cabin, under the upper frontal part, volumes were arranged to accommodate some units. Access to this compartment was provided by three hatches. Along the perimeter of the upper part of the case there were several drawers for a particular equipment or property.

View of the starboard and aft. Photos of the State Military Technical Museum /

Because of the maximum ease of construction, an experienced all-terrain vehicle did not need a high power propulsion system. Unlike some previous cars, he received only one petrol engine ZIL-130 with power 150 hp. The engine was connected to a standard single-plate clutch and manual gearbox. Such a power unit was placed in the rear of the case. An exhaust pipe with a silencer was placed on the stern of its casing.

Taking into account the developments in a number of successful projects, the ZIL-49042 all-terrain vehicle was equipped with an onboard power distribution transmission. The power unit in the form of an engine and a manual gearbox transmitted power to the transfer case with the issuance of torque to the three drive shafts. Through a blockable interboard differential, the box divided power into two streams for each side. The third output shaft was connected to the jet propulsion. Between the individual wheels of the board the power was distributed using wheel reduction gears, three on each stream. The project proposed a new design of transmission brakes, which later found use on a new technology.

The three-axle undercarriage was used again with a uniform distribution of axles on the base. The latter was equal to 4,8 m with the distance between adjacent axes in 2,4 m. ZIL-49042 retained the worked out scheme with a rigid suspension of the middle wheels and a lever-torsion system on the first and third axes. The axles with the sprung suspension were also connected to the control mechanisms. Wheels were completed with tires of the I-159 model with the dimension of 16,00-20 and connected to a centralized pressure control system.

The car rises on a slope. Photos of the State Military Technical Museum /

A water jet was placed in the rear of the hull. The channel of this device connected the intake device in the bottom and the nozzle in the recess of the feed unit. The direction of the ejected flow and, accordingly, the thrust vector was changed with the help of two deflected side flaps.

About half the length of the hull of the all-terrain vehicle ZIL-49042 accounted for the cockpit and passenger cabin. All seats for the crew and passengers were placed in a single habitable compartment that did not have solid partitions. The front part of the habitable volume was given under the cockpit with three seats. The driver was placed on the left and had all the necessary controls. The passenger cabin had eight seats located along the sides. The cabin was completed with large windshields and side windows of a smaller size. The interior was also equipped with advanced glazing, which provided an almost all-round view.

Access to crew seats was provided by a pair of side doors. Above the middle of the cabin was provided with a sunroof. Landing in the passenger compartment was quite complicated. His only door was aft and led to the roof of the hull deck. Thus, before boarding the passenger, the passengers had to climb on a fairly high amphibian board.

Tests in the cold season. Photo

Despite the experimental nature of the project, the ZIL-49042 all-terrain vehicle received a set of various equipment for working at a distance from the bases and providing assistance. So, the habitable compartment received three separate heaters of different types. A fire extinguisher, rescue and medical equipment, a stock of clothing, etc. were transported in stowage. At the disposal of the crew had a supply of water and food for three days. To create a truly domestic environment in the cabin even put a portable TV from the line "Youth".

The new components and assemblies, which were distinguished by their reduced mass, made it possible to significantly reduce the weight of the all-terrain vehicle, although they did not lead to a noticeable reduction in size. The length of the machine ZIL-49042 was 8,96 m, width - 2,6 m, height - 2,5 m. The wheelbase reached 4,8 m with a track 2,1 m. Ground clearance - 448 mm. Due to the use of new structural elements, the curb weight of the machine was increased to 6415 kg. The payload is 2 t. According to calculations, the amphibian could reach speeds up to 75-80 km / h on the highway. On the water, this parameter reached 8-9 km / h.

In mid-November 1972, the plant them. Likhachev completed the construction of the only planned all-terrain vehicle ZIL-49042. The car was immediately sent for testing, under which new solutions were planned to be tested in different conditions and in different landscapes. According to the test results, decisions could be made on the further development of the project or on the creation of a completely new machine.

Amphibian on the water. Photo

The prototype of the new model at the factory was painted in a protective color by the type of military equipment. On the doors of the cab caused the side number "44". Also used license plates "11-43 sample." It is known that the factory wits could not pass by the new machine. For the characteristic coloring and amphibious capabilities of the all-terrain vehicle nicknamed the "Crocodile".

Tests at different roads and landfills showed that the applied new transmission units, which were distinguished by a smaller mass, completely cope with their work and can be used in practice. The achieved reduction in the mass of the structure to a certain extent reduced the load on the aggregates and gave some advantages. In general, new devices have justified themselves. They could be used both in the further development of the existing ZIL-49042 project and in the creation of new types of equipment.

For certain reasons, SKB ZIL did not develop an experimental project in its current form, but launched the development of a completely new machine. However, despite some innovations, a significant number of developments on the ZIL-49042 was preserved. Other solutions from this project were reworked in accordance with the existing requirements and were also used when creating new equipment.

Experienced all-terrain vehicle ZIL-49042
Prior to restoration, ZIL-49042 was in very poor condition. Photo

In the first half of the seventies, the Special Design Bureau of the Plant. Likhachev launched the development of a new amphibious all-terrain vehicle ZIL-4906, designed to become the basis for a promising search and evacuation complex PEK-490. Despite some external and internal differences, the ZIL-4906 transport vehicle and the ZIL-49061 passenger all-terrain vehicle were to a certain extent based on the design of the experienced ZIL-49042.

In new projects, SKB ZIL re-used the proven and proven three-axle chassis architecture with a stiffer suspension of middle wheels. Wheels and tires without modifications borrowed from the ZIL-49042. Also, the "Crocodile" took the body, slightly changing the front and rear overhangs. The transmission for the ZIL-4906 was partially developed anew, but the gear ratios in its main elements were defined in the ZIL-49042 project.

Experienced all-terrain vehicle ZIL-49042, which appeared in 1972 year, could not go beyond the limits of polygons and remained in stories exclusively as an experimental machine designed to develop new technical solutions. At the same time, the solutions were successful and could be used in new projects. Soon after the completion of tests of the experimental machine, the development of new types of equipment began. By the mid-seventies, new PEK-490 machines were put to the test, and after a few years began to replace the aging PES-1.

Renovated all-terrain vehicle in motion. Photos of the State Military Technical Museum /

In connection with the start of designing new samples of the special "space" technology, the prototype ZIL-49042 turned out to be unnecessary. For a long time he remained at the enterprise ZIL, where he stood idle. Later, a unique car changed its status and became a museum exhibit. As in the case of other interesting all-terrain vehicles, for many years not the most accurate storage had a bad effect on the condition of the car. However, a few years ago, all museum amphibians from SKB ZIL underwent restoration and restored their original appearance. At the same time, a small “artistic liberty” was allowed: a white border appeared on the protruding upper belt of the fiberglass water-displacing hull, which was not in the original color scheme.

Now the only all-terrain vehicle ZIL-49042 is stored in the State Military Technical Museum (v. Ivanovskoye, Moscow region). It is part of an interesting exposition representing all the main developments of the ZIL Special Design Bureau in the field of ultra-high-traffic vehicles. Next to the "Crocodile" are demonstrated more new machines, created using its ideas and solutions.

The ZIL-49042 project was intended to test new technical solutions and determine their prospects in subsequent projects. The prototype nicknamed "Crocodile" met expectations, which allowed us to begin designing new technology. Soon the rescue complex PEC-490 appeared, the operation of which is still ongoing. Similar results of the whole “space” program of the SCB ZIL show how important and useful was the experimental project ZIL-49042.

On the materials of the sites:
Kochnev E.D. Secret cars of the Soviet Army. - M .: Yauza, Eksmo, 2011.
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  1. Kir
    Kir 24 March 2018 07: 14
    Simply put, ZIL-49042 is the father of the legendary Blue Bird (ZIL-49061)
  2. san4es
    san4es 24 March 2018 10: 40
    hiThe ZIL-49042 project was intended to test new technical solutions and determine their prospects in subsequent projects.
    1. VictorZhivilov
      VictorZhivilov 24 March 2018 18: 15
      Malenty Alaverdi:

      Yes, the worst thing is we irretrievably lost the ZIL itself ... the factory itself ... and these are territories, machine tools, high-class workers and engineers, and the school they represented ... as the saying goes, “there would be bones and meat would grow”. the fact of the matter is that bones have long turned into power. Ah, that’s sad ... sad