Daf history

Hubert van Doorne started Commanditaire Vennootschap Hub van Doorne's Machinefabriek in 1928 with the patronage of A H Huegnes of the DeValk brewery.  The assistance offered by Heugnes included use of a workshop next to his brewery.

In 1932 Hub and his brother, Wim, renamed the company Van Doorne's Aanhangwagen Fabriek (van Doorne's Trailer Factory) and started producing trailers in Einhoven. In 1936 Huegnes gave up his stake and, by 1949, DAF were also producing tractor units (trucks) for their trailers to be used with.

In this field they introduced a number of revolutionary concepts including the demount container trailer and the automatic "fifth wheel" coupling. More information about the history of Daf trucks can be found on cartype.com

Daf cars arrived at the 1958 Amsterdam show (the AutoRIA) with the unveiling of a small four seater using a continuously variable, belt driven, transmission which Hub van Doorne had first thought of around 1952.

After six years of development, it was successful enough to gain a positive reaction from show visitors and the Daf 600 Daffodil was released onto the market in 1959 complete with it's Variomatic continuously variable transmission.

The Daf 33 of 1962 was very similar, with bodywork subtly revamped by Michelotti.  The engine was essentially the same 2 cylinder, air cooled, boxer unit but with an increase to 746 cc.

Michelotti was also tasked with the fully redesigned bodywork of the Daf 44 in 1967.  This was the first of the "B Bodied" models and still used the same basic engine, but with a longer stroke crank to give 844cc capacity - an extra 10 teaspoons per cylinder of raw power!

The Daf 55 of 1968 used the new B body with a more conventional  1106cc Renault 4 cylinder, watercooled inline, engine.  This was the basis of the successful 55 Marathon rally car - still with Variomatic belt driven transmission!

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