FGM Major General
- Oct 11, 2010
- Reaction score
- Turn Rate
- 1-2 pw
Manufactured by Vidal & Sohn Tempo Werk in Germany, on 1936 responded to a army contract for a four wheel drive light utility vehicle. The G1200 was powered by two 600cc JLO two-stroke motors, one in the front and one in the rear. Each engine separately drove the front and rear independently suspended axles in much the same arrangement as Tatra used in their trucks. Each engine had its own gearbox and could be operated together for full four wheel drive or they could be run independently. The car had high ground clearance and with the body floating over its independent suspension it was able to comfortably traverse even the roughest ground. Top speed was 70 kilometres per hour. Fuel economy was a reasonable 12 litres per hundred kilometres, which could be reduced further by running on one engine alone.
Despite the versatility of the vehicle, the army were prejudiced against two-stroke engines in both cars and motorcycles, even refusing DKW, then Germany's biggest motorcycle manufacturer, an army contract, so it came as little surprise that they showed no interest in Tempo's offering. Tempo however were not disheartened and successfully shopped the G1200 to other European armies, including Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Latvia, Croatia, Czechoslovakia and Romania. The G1200 was even sold as far afield as Mexico, Brazil and Argentina.
Tempo G1200 in Argentina army
The WW2 put an end to Tempo's export market. The German army seized the Tempo's on the production line and some of those in foreign service. They were mainly used as auxiliary vehicles by police and home defense forces, rather than entering front-line service, despite the fact they would have been extremely well suited to service on the Russian Front. Production ceased in 1943 after only 1335 were built.
Finally Tempo would be absorbed by Mercedes-Benz in the 1970s.