At the time of the merger, both factories were at the forefront of the production of locomotives, buses with internal combustion engines, and steam-powered vehicles. During World War II Krauss-Maffei, run by a group of investors of the American “Madison Capital Partners” since 2006, was completely converted to arms production, including the manufacturing of main battle tanks. To produce Leopard tanks the company was first licensed in 1963, which was updated to the Leopard 2 in 1979. Also in the late seventies, after about ten years of development, the production of Gepard self-propelled anti-aircraft gun began. The company’s legendary products include the PzH-2000 self-propelled howitzer too. Until 2003, Krauss-Maffei Wegmann manufactured also the M270 Multiple Launch Rocket System, which was deployed in the Gulf War. One of the company’s special products is the Leguan bridge-laying system.
It is an interesting fact that in 1971 a total of seventeen prototypes were produced of the Leopard 2, increasingly well-known in Hungary too. The series of tests lasted for several years: the composition of the hull’s armour, the fire control system, and the cannon were constantly modified. In 1977, the German Ministry of Defence made a decision on the purchase of 1,800 Leopard 2s. Based on the data of the tender wins, the company’s product can be labelled as one of the most successful tanks in the world.
Employing more than 4,000 people, Krauss-Maffei manufactures various parts for its products not only in Germany but also in Brazil, Greece, Great Britain, Mexico, the Netherlands, Singapore, Turkey and the United States.
More video contents on the YouTube channel of the Hungarian Defence Forces.
Author: Kálmánfi Gábor (honvedelem.hu)