Rumpler drop wagon
Rumpler Teardrop Car in the German Museum of Technology in Berlin
|Class :||upper middle class|
|Body versions :||limousine|
Petrol engines : 2.3–2.6 liters
|Wheelbase :||2900 mm|
|Empty weight :||1400 kg|
After the First World War , the Versailles Peace Treaty banned Germany from building powered aircraft, which is why the aircraft manufacturer Rumpler incorporated his experience into an automobile project. The project was financed , among others, by the Berlin publisher Hans Lachmann-Mosse . The car was fundamentally different from the other vehicles of its time. What was striking was the slippery body shape, supposedly modeled on a falling drop , in which curved glass panes were used for the first time . The car owes its drag coefficient of just 0.28 , which is still good today, to this body . The driver sat in the front center, behind that there was space for four passengers. A trunk (above the engine) was only added to the later built cars. The teardrop car was one of the few cars with a mid-engine . Initially it was a six-cylinder W engine that Rumpler had Siemens built in Berlin, later a four-cylinder in- line engine that powered the rear wheels via a multi-plate clutch , a three-speed gearbox and a differential .
The car had a rigid axle at the front. Rumpler replaced the rigid rear axle , which was common at the time , with the pendulum axle patented by him . This form of independent suspension was later adopted by many other manufacturers.
The water-cooled W6 engine had six cylinders cast together in pairs (the first series with bore: 74 mm, stroke: 100 mm), which were arranged in three rows with an opening angle of 60 °. The engine had a displacement of 2310 cm³ and developed 35 hp (26 kW). This enabled the teardrop car to reach a top speed of 95 km / h. Later, the engine capacity was increased to 2580 cm³ while maintaining the same output, and the top speed increased to 105 km / h. Finally, in-line four-cylinder engines from Benz with a displacement of 2610 cm³ were installed, developing 50 hp (37 kW) and accelerating the vehicle up to 115 km / h.
Due to technical problems - the six-cylinder engine was unreliable and the steering poorly designed - and the lack of trunk, the vehicle was not a commercial success, which is why only about 100 copies were built in the Rumpler works in Berlin-Johannisthal by 1925 . Most of them were used as taxis in Berlin . Fritz Lang used a large number of teardrop chariots as props in his film Metropolis . The cars were deliberately destroyed during filming.
- Ulrich Kubisch : Rumpler teardrop wagon. The homecoming of a Berlin automobile. Berlin: Museum of Transport and Technology, 1989. 17 pages.
- Ulrich Kubisch: Automobiles from Berlin. From the drop car to the Amphicar. (= Berlin contributions to the history of technology and industrial culture, number 5). Berlin: Nicolai, 1985. ISBN 3-87584-155-7 .
- Olaf von Fersen : A Century of Automotive Technology. Passenger cars. VDI-Verlag, Düsseldorf 1987, ISBN 3-18-400620-4 , pp. 31-33.
- Pictures and history of the teardrop wagon (Deutsches Museum)
- Geo-Era No. 27 - 08/07: World novelty: the Rumpler drop car
- Detailed description with many detailed photos