Steyr Daimler Puch

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Steyr-Daimler-Puch AG

legal form Corporation
founding April 16, 1864
Seat Steyr , Austria
Number of employees
  • approx. 32,000 (1938/45)
  • approx.17,000 (1980)
  • 8,900 (1991)
Branch Mechanical engineering , automobile manufacturers , defense industry

The Steyr-Daimler-Puch AG was a major conglomerate of iron-processing industry and one of the largest employers in Austria , which was divided in 1987 into numerous today independent subgroups.


Before 1938

Steyr logo

The nucleus of the company was the rifle factory that Leopold Werndl opened in Oberletten near Steyr in 1830 .

Josef Werndl , son of the company's founder, founded Josef und Franz Werndl & Comp., Waffenfabrik und Sägemühle on April 16, 1864 (this date is officially the company's date of birth) and from 1869 co-led the company as the Austrian Arms Factory (ÖWG) the legal form of the stock corporation . Arms production gave way to bicycles from 1894 (see also: Waffenrad ) and after 1918 to the manufacture of automobiles.

In 1926 the ÖWG changed its name to Steyr-Werke AG .

The Steyr-Werke merged with Austro-Daimler-Puchwerke AG in 1934. These were created in 1928 from the merger of Austro-Daimler , the Oesterreichische Flugzeugfabrik (Oeffag) and Puch-Werke AG . The new company traded under the name of Steyr-Daimler-Puch AG.

The designers who worked for the predecessor companies of Steyr-Daimler-Puch and are considered pioneers of Austrian automobile construction included Ferdinand Porsche (from 1906–1923 at Austro-Daimler and 1929 at Steyr-Werke ), Hans Ledwinka (1917– 1921 with the ÖWG ) and Karl Jenschke (1922–1935 with the ÖWG / Steyr-Werke).

Steyr automobiles have become known far beyond Austria's borders for their high quality and high-quality workmanship through sporting successes and expedition trips that are demanding on materials . The automobiles initially comprised the large 6-cylinder types Steyr II ("Waffenauto" / from 1920, for the first time with a monoblock engine ), Steyr V and VII, and from 1925 the solid mid-range Steyr XII , which was used before the Great Depression Austria high numbers were built. The medium-sized Steyr IV car , however, was not an economic success.

Sales problems meant that Steyr car production was halted in 1929/30 and only started up again with the Steyr 30 (XXX) designed by Ferdinand Porsche . Its conservative line was continued from 1933 with the types 430, 530 and 630 . In 1932, Steyr tried to use the Steyr-Opel ("Stoppel"), a small car originally from Opel , to utilize the capacity of its factory, but had little success.

From 1934 the modern streamlined vehicle types Steyr 100 and 200 with four-cylinder engines were sold well. The small car Steyr 50/55 (“Steyr Baby”) presented in 1936 was just as successful . At the same time, 6-cylinder models were also built based on the types 200, the types 120, 125 and 220 . Luxurious convertibles based on the 220 type were fitted with bodies in small series at the renowned Gläser-Karosserie GmbH in Dresden. Austrian companies such as Keibl or Armbruster also rarely received individual orders. Trucks and vans, pickups, taxis, ambulances, and fire engines were also built in small numbers.

In terms of sport, Steyr-Daimler-Puch AG was also represented at this time. For example, “ice skating shoes” or runners for professional sport (which at that time were still mounted on normal shoes) with the resounding name “STYRIA OLYMPIC” were produced. These runners are already sought-after rarities among collectors today.

From 1938 to 1945

After Austria was annexed to the German Reich , the Steyr-Daimler-Puch-Werke were quickly transformed back into an armaments company under the newly appointed General Director Georg Meindl , achieved in the motor vehicle sector by the Schell Plan .

During the time of National Socialism in Austria , arms production dominated the company affiliated to the Reichswerke Hermann Göring with around 32,000 employees . New factories were built in Graz-Thondorf ( two-man factory ) and in St. Valentin ( Nibelungen factory ).

The extensive collaboration with DEST in the Mauthausen granite works should also be emphasized .

In several sub-camps of the Mauthausen concentration camp , prisoners had to do forced labor for the Steyrwerke. In Steyr-Münichholz subcamp and Melk ball bearings were produced. Production was also carried out in occupied Poland, for example in a satellite camp of the Majdanek concentration camp in Radom . After bombing raids on the Graz-Thondorf plant, parts of the production were relocated to tunnels in the Peggauer Wand as part of the so-called U relocation .

The range of production was immediately expanded to include the German standard rifle, the Karabiner 98k , and the development and production of the MG 42 machine gun and the StG 44 assault rifle began.

The types 250 and 640 developed for the Austrian army continued to be built on a small scale. The production of cars - such as the convertibles, limousines and government vehicles of the types Steyr 200 and Steyr 220 - was ended in 1940. The production of passenger cars was no longer started. In 1941 the production of the 1500 A, a completely new design with an air-cooled V8 engine, began. On this construction, which was also the basis for the new beginning after the Second World War, the Raupenschlepper Ost was developed in 1942 , which was built by various companies under license.

Steyr Daimler Puch , mergers from 1864 to 1944
brand Business
1860s 1870s 1880s 1890s 1900s 1910s 1920s 1930s 1940s
Steyr weapons Werndl OEWG Steyr works Steyr Daimler Puch
Cycles " Weapon wheel "
Tractors " Steyr "
vehicles " Steyr "
Puch Cycles Puch Austro-Daimler-Puch
motorcycles Puch
Automobiles Puch
Austro-Daimler vehicles Austrian Daimler-Motoren KG / AG
Open Bodies
Planes " Albatross "

After 1945

After the end of the Second World War , there was a great need for commercial vehicles and tractors. Production of type 370 trucks with V8 petrol engines began in 1946. In 1948 the first truck, the Steyr Diesel 380, was presented. The production of Steyr tractors is also based on this diesel development. As the demand for passenger cars also increased, a cooperation agreement was signed with Fiat , and the Fiat models came onto the Austrian market as the Steyr-Fiat.

In the mid-1960s, the product range included cars , trucks , off-road vehicles , tractors , agricultural machinery, rolling bearings, hunting weapons, tanks , motorcycles , bicycles and tools . About a third of production was exported . Well-known vehicles were the Haflinger and the Pinzgauer , which were used for many years primarily in the Austrian armed forces, but also in numerous foreign armies.

The Puch G is identical to the Mercedes-Benz G , which is also built in Graz. Only the much smaller Steyr-Daimler-Puch sales network meant that the vehicle was also sold under the Mercedes-Benz brand .

Famous Steyr tanks are the Saurer armored personnel carrier, which is produced in numerous versions and is used in many countries (Austria, Greece, Cyprus, Africa etc.), Cuirassier (Austria, Brazil, Morocco, Botswana, Tunisia, Argentina etc.), Pandur ( Austria, Belgium, Slovenia, USA, Kuwait etc.) and ASCOD-Ulan (Austria, Spain).

From 1980 the Steyr-Daimler-Puch AG was the third largest industrial company in Austria with around 17,000 employees. Restructuring and the outsourcing of parts of the production to several successor companies reduced this number to 8,900 in 1991.

Outsourcing of the production divisions from 1987

A Steyr omnibus, the so-called "Austria bus"
A Steyr trolleybus

In 1987 the company started filleting. Gradually, the individual production lines were sold or outsourced:

  • 1987 Sale of the plant in Greece (since then independent as ELBO )
  • 1987 Spin-off of arms production into an independent company, Steyr Mannlicher GmbH & Co KG.
  • 1987 Sale of the bicycle division in the form of the Puch brand to the Italian company Bianchi, which in turn was bought by  Cycleurope  AB.
  • 1987 Sale of the moped division in the form of the Puch brand to the Italian Piaggio Group.
  • Sale of the rolling bearing division to SKF .
  • 1990 Sale of the truck division in the form of the Steyr brand to the German MAN group.
  • 1990s Outsourcing of tractor production in the form of the Steyr brand to the US Case group (later CNH ), see Steyr (tractor manufacturer)
  • 1990 Outsourcing of bus production in the form of the Steyr brand to the Swedish Volvo group.
  • 1998 Sale of heavy weapons production ( Steyr-Daimler-Puch Spezialfahrzeug GmbH ) through a management buy-out to an Austrian investor group, which in 2003 sold them on to the US armaments company General Dynamics .
  • 1998 Sale of the two remaining divisions, vehicle technology and drive technology, to the Canadian Magna group owned by Frank Stronach , with the drive technology division being sold to the German ZF Friedrichshafen AG .

The remaining Steyr-Daimler-Puch Fahrzeugtechnik AG & Co. KG (SFT) in Graz was merged with Magna Europa AG to Magna Steyr in 2001 and positioned as an independent subgroup of Magna International .

  • In 2001, Steyr Motors split off from this through a “management buy-out”. In September 2012, this in turn sold 100% of the shares to the Chinese investor group Phoenix Tree HSC Investment
Steyr Daimler Puch , divisions and spin-offs from 1945
1940s 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000s Business area Brand / company today
" Steyr Fiat " Car -
Steyr Daimler Puch as "Steyr" or "Steyr-Puch" Car -
Steyr Daimler Puch Steyr Mannlicher Firearms Steyr Mannlicher
Steyr Daimler Puch Piaggio motorcycles -
Steyr Daimler Puch Bianchi (Piaggio) Cycleurope Cycles Puch
Steyr Daimler Puch Svenska Kullagerfabriken roller bearing SKF
Steyr Daimler Puch MAN truck MAN
Steyr Daimler Puch Case CNH Global Tractors Steyr
Steyr Daimler Puch Volvo buses -
Steyr Daimler Puch SSF General Dynamics heavy weapons Steyr-Daimler-Puch special vehicle
Steyr Daimler Puch Magna Vehicle technology Magna Steyr
Steyr Daimler Puch Magna ZF Friedrichshafen Drive technology -
Steyr Daimler Puch Magna Steyr Motors Engines Steyr Motors


Cars (1920–1959)

Steyr VII 1926
Steyr XX 1930
Steyr 220 1939
Steyr-Puch 500 DL
Type Construction period cylinder Displacement power Vmax
II (12/40 hp) 1920-1924 6 row 3325 cc 40 hp (29 kW) 100 km / h
IV (7/23 PS) 1922-1924 4 row 1814 cc 23 HP (17 kW) 80 km / h
VI Klausen Sport (19/145 hp) 1922-1924 6 row 4900 cc 145 hp (107 kW) over 150 km / h
60 / VI (12/60 hp) 1922-1926 6 row 3325 cc 60 hp (44 kW) 120 km / h
V (12/40 hp) 1924-1925 6 row 3325 cc 40 hp (29 kW) 110 km / h
VII (12/50 hp) 1925-1929 6 row 3325 cc 50 HP (37 kW) 100 km / h
XII (6/30 hp) 1926-1929 6 row 1568 cc 30 HP (22 kW) 85 km / h
VI Sport (15/80 PS) 1928 6 row 4014 cc 80 hp (59 kW) 130 km / h
VI Sport (17/100 PS) 1928 6 row 4400 cc 100 hp (74 kW) 135 km / h
XVI (15/70 hp) 1928-1929 6 row 4014 cc 70 hp (51 kW) 110 km / h
Austria (21/100 hp) 1929 8 row 5295 cc 100 hp (74 kW) 120 km / h
XX (8/40 hp) 1929 6 row 2070 cc 40 hp (29 kW) 90 km / h
30 / XXX / 130 (8/40 hp) 1930-1932 6 row 2078 cc 40 hp (29 kW) 90 km / h
30 type 45 taximeters (8/40 hp) 1930-1933 6 row 2078 cc 40 hp (29 kW) 90 km / h
30 S / 230 (8/45 hp) 1932 6 row 2078 cc 45 hp (33 kW) 110 km / h
Steyr-Opel ("Stoppel")
(4.5 / 22 PS)
1932 4 row 1169 cc 22 hp (16.2 kW)
30 SL / 330 (8/45 hp) 1932-1933 6 row 2078 cc 45 hp (33 kW) 95 km / h
430 1933-1935 6 row 2078 cc 45 hp (33 kW) 110 km / h
100 1934-1936 4 row 1385 cc 32 HP (23.5 kW) 100 km / h
120 great 1935-1936 6 row 1990 cc 50 HP (37 kW) 120 km / h
530 1935-1936 6 row 2260 cc 55 HP (40 kW) 105 km / h
125 super 1936-1937 6 row 2078 cc 50 HP (37 kW) 120 km / h
50 ("Steyr Baby") 1936-1938 4 boxers 984 cc 22 hp (16.2 kW) 90 km / h
200 1936-1940 4 row 1498 cc 35 hp (25.7 kW) 100 km / h
630 1937-1939 6 row 2260 cc 55 HP (40 kW) 100 km / h
220 1937-1941 6 row 2260 cc 55 HP (40 kW) 120 km / h
55 ("Steyr Baby") 1938-1940 4 boxers 1158 cc 25.5 PS (18.8 kW) 95 km / h
2000 1953-1959 4 row 1997 cc 65–86 hp (48–63 kW) 135 km / h
2300 sports 1956-1959 4 row 2260 cc 95 PS (70 kW) 160 km / h
Steyr-Puch 500 1957-1973 2 boxers 493 cc 16 hp (11.8 kW) 100 km / h

In the Automobilmuseum Aspang in Aspang-Markt in Lower Austria there are vehicles of the models Steyr XX, Steyr 30 / Type 45, Steyr 50, Steyr 100, Steyr 200, Steyr 220 and Steyr 530 as well as a Steyr-Opel from 1932, a Steyr-Puch 500 DL from 1959 and a Steyr 40 truck from 1931 on display.


Steyr 480
Steyr 91
Steyr 14S28 (NMK, based on the MAN M2000)
Steyr 12S18

* Type III first truck chassis produced from 1920. In the mid-1960s, the production program comprised 21 designs based on five different basic types (380, 480, 586, 680 and 780), plus various special bodies such as tank trucks, silos, fire trucks and garbage trucks. The payload was 4 to 8 tons, with both conventional long-nosed vehicles and forward control vehicles (type 780) being produced. The engines were 5.3 l four-cylinder (380, 480) or 6 l six-cylinder .

In 1990 the truck division was sold to MAN, upon request MAN trucks were delivered with a Steyr radiator grille until the early 2000s.


Steyr-Mercedes SML 14 H 256

Steyr was also active in bus construction. In 1949 the 380 a and 380 b coach with front engine and hood were introduced, based on the 380 truck series. In 1953, the revised 380 b and q followed.

In 1956, the 480 a and 488 b coach were presented, still with a front engine, but in a new body without a hood.

From 1962 Steyr built the rear-engined bus 780 a together with Saurer .

From 1968 to 1978 more than 1,600 copies of the 12 m long-distance bus Steyr SL 12H 210 were mainly delivered to the Austrian Post and Railways.

Cooperation with various other companies followed. Two models developed together with Ikarus were the Steyr-Ikarus SIR 11 (12) H210 (1968–1972, initially as Saurer) and the Steyr-Ikarus SIR / SIL 7H 132 (1971–1976).

In the 1970s, several bus types from Mercedes-Benz were built under license, including the VÖV standard bus and the O 303 intercity bus . From 1976 to 1986 almost 1000 intercity buses of the type Steyr-Mercedes SML 14H 256 were produced and almost exclusively delivered to the Austrian railways and post offices.

From 1986 to 1992 more than 500 Austrian buses Steyr SL 11 HUA 280 followed as a further development of the company's own transit bus series. These intercity buses went mainly to the ÖBB and Austrian Post . There were also articulated bus and city bus variants. From 1988 the Mercedes OM 447 hLA was installed instead of its own engine 9 FUA .

From 1978 to 1992 the Gräf / Steyr LU 200 M11 city ​​bus was produced on Gräf & Stift chassis, mainly for Wiener Linien .

From the 1990s, bodies on Volvo chassis followed, which were manufactured until the bus division was sold to Volvo.

Armored vehicles


Steyr diesel tractor type 80

After Steyr Daimler Puch AG (SDP) had manufactured the first Austrian diesel tractor of the post-war period ( Steyr 180 , 26 hp) in 1947 and sold it to medium-sized and large companies with increasing success, the Steyr diesel tractor type 80 was manufactured from 1949 . The target group that should be addressed were smaller companies. Around 45,000 of this tractor had been built by 1964.

The single-cylinder diesel engine initially developed 13 hp (9.6 kW) at 1500 rpm. From 1953 the engine output was increased to 15 HP (11 kW). The first models were equipped with "bottom exhaust", dry air filter and a crank for starting, but soon "top exhaust" and oil bath air filter were standard and hydraulic lifting gear and electric starter were available on request.

In addition to the standard Steyr 80 tractor with 24-inch rims, there was also the Steyr 80a root crop tractor with 36-inch wheels and a raised portal axle for over 46 cm clearance from the ground. Successor models were the Steyr diesel tractors Type 84 and Type 86.

For more information on Steyr tractors, see: Steyr (tractor manufacturer) .


Puch 250 SGS, built in 1954
Puch 250 R, built in 1935

The Puch 500 and Puch 800, after the Second World War the Puch 250 TF ("the Styrian Norton", tubular frame) and the Puch 125 SV , Puch 175 equipped with the innovative shell frame (see: Erwin Musger ) are among the motorcycles still best known today SV , Puch 250 SG and Puch 250 SGS .

Their history can be described in three phases. It began in 1900 when Johann Puch built the "D" tricycle, corresponding to the De Dion Bouton motor tricycle that was widely used at the time . In 1914, the year of Puch's death, the single-cylinder model R2 reached a maximum number of 700 units, after which production numbers gradually fell to ten units of the model MM from 1916–1917.

The next phase is shaped by the engineer Giovanni Marcellino. (See: Puch two-stroke double piston engine ) The Puch LM from 1924 had 2,500 units, the Puch 220 from 1926–1928 had 12,000 units, the most popular model was the 250 T from 1929–1932 with 13,200 units.

With the Puch 800 and its four-cylinder boxer engine , this era has the most powerful motorcycle, with the "Styriette" (60 cm 3 ) its lightest.

After the Second World War , the DKW RT 125 was considered to be the toughest competition that the Puchwerk faced. The Puch 125 from 1940 establishes a long line of generations of 125s, which culminates in the Puch M 125 from 1966. From the 1967 season onwards, this motorcycle concept found additional distribution in the "little sisters", the M 50 S and M 50 SE mopeds.


  • 1968 State Award Design for off-road vehicle Steyr-Puch Haflinger 700 AP (first award of the award)


Wikibooks: Tractor Lexicon: Steyr  - learning and teaching materials
  • Friedrich F. Ehn: The great Puch book. The two-wheelers from 1890 to 1987 , 8th edition, Weishaupt, Gnas 2013, ISBN 978-3-900310-49-3 .
  • Friedrich F. Ehn: The Puch Automobile 1900–1990 (2nd edition 2000).
  • Hilde Harrer: Grazer Radfahrvereine 1882-1900 (A contribution to the history of Styrian cycling) , Historical Provincial Commission for Styria, Graz, 1998, ISBN 3-901251-12-X
  • Franz Knogler: Steyr passenger car from 1920–1941 . Steyr Daimler Puch AG, Steyr 1998, ISBN 3-9500823-1-X .
  • Matthias Marschik; Martin Krusche: The story of the Steyr Puch 500 (world famous in Austria) , Verlagshaus Hernals, 2012, ISBN 978-3-902744-55-5 .
  • Martin Pfundner: Austro Daimler and Steyr. Rivals until the merger. Ferdinand Porsche's early years . Böhlau, Vienna 2007. ISBN 978-3-205-77639-0 .
  • Egon Rudolf: Puch. A history of development , Weishaupt, Gnas 2007, ISBN 978-3-7059-0259-6 .
  • Hans Seper et al. a .: Austrian automobile history . Eurotax Verlag, Klosterneuburg 1999, ISBN 3-905566-01-X .
  • Hans Seper : 100 years of Steyr-Daimler-Puch AG 1864–1964. 3rd edition, Weishaupt, Gnas 2009, ISBN 978-3-7059-0290-9 (preprint from: Blätter für Technikgeschichte . Issue 26).
  • Wolfgang J. Verwüster: Puch. Mopeds, scooters and mopeds, Weishaupt, Gnas 2012, ISBN 978-3-7059-0254-1 .
  • Wolfgang Wehap: fresh, cycling, Styrian. A journey through time through the regional cultural history of cycling. Steirische Verlags-Gesellschaft, Graz 2005, ISBN 3-85489-126-1 , p. 103 ff.

Web links

Commons : Steyr vehicles  - collection of images, videos and audio files
Commons : Puch Motorcycles  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Steyr 1964 - Steyr-Daimler-Puch AG in the year of its centenary.
  2. ^ Rudolf A. Haunschmied , Jan-Ruth Mills, Siegi Witzany-Durda: St. Georgen-Gusen-Mauthausen - Concentration Camp Mauthausen Reconsidered . BoD, Norderstedt 2008, ISBN 978-3-8334-7440-8 . P. 120ff.
  3. Hans Maršálek : The history of the concentration camp Mauthausen. 4th edition 2006, ISBN 3-7035-1235-0 , pp. 80f.
  4. Wolfgang Benz , Barbara Distel (ed.): The place of terror . History of the National Socialist Concentration Camps. Volume 7: Niederhagen / Wewelsburg, Lublin-Majdanek, Arbeitsdorf, Herzogenbusch (Vught), Bergen-Belsen, Mittelbau-Dora. CH Beck, Munich 2008, ISBN 978-3-406-52967-2 , p. 96 ff.
  6. “Steyr Motors” returns in hometown, July 4th 2003
  7. Variable truck program. In: Automotive Technology . 5/1964, pp. 179, 182.
  8. Steyr Diesel 380 I - buses and panel vans. Retrieved August 21, 2017 .
  9. Steyr Diesel 380 II - Omnibuses. Retrieved August 21, 2017 .
  10. Steyr Diesel 480 and Steyr-Saurer Omnibuses. Retrieved August 21, 2017 .
  11. Steyr (Ed.): SIR / SIL 7H 132 .
  12. Steyr tractors - the small 1-cylinder: Steyr 80, 84 and 86 ,, accessed on November 16, 2019.