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ZIL-pickup: description with photo, specifications, history of creation

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ZIL-pickup: description with photo, specifications, history of creation
ZIL-pickup: description with photo, specifications, history of creation

The first experimental model of the ZIL pickup was built in the 50s of the last century. The development was carried out in the design department of the capital plant named after Likhachev. The definition of the vehicle by purpose is a light truck for transporting fuel for the period of testing experienced government limousines. The model with an elongated nose and a squat hull looked funny and somewhat defiant.

Thanks to the extraordinary appearance of the car was nicknamed "Cheburashka". Consider its characteristics and methods of modern restoration.

Layout ZIL-pickup

Second generation

ZIL-pickup recalled itself again in the mid-80s. At the plant, for their own needs, they built two samples of "Cheburashka" based on the ZIL-4104 passenger car. The engine used was a 315 horsepower motor, which interacted with a hydromechanical automatic transmission in three modes. "Gemini" received state numbers 95-50 and 91-50 (MNP).

Representatives of this series were equipped with regular cabs from a three-axle truck ZIL-131, unified side bodies made oftree. Awnings were installed on them, covering three-quarters of each platform in length. Pickups were used for household purposes while being tested by mileage.


The bright appearance of the ZIL pickup attracted the eyes of passers-by and other drivers, like a magnet. The employees of the State traffic inspectorate did not leave the squat "Cheburashka" unattended. The truck was often stopped not to check documents and other formalities, but to inquire about the technical features of a rare vehicle. Experts appreciated the engine part, which housed the V-shaped gasoline "engine-eight".

Homemade ZIL pickup

Interesting facts

At the Autoexotica car festival in 2012, one could see a beautiful orange ZIL pickup truck (photo above). The design decoration slightly copied the masterpieces of foreign designers of the middle of the last century. In general, the car looked quite decent and harmonious. It was difficult to recognize Cheburashka, which was once used to transport technical and measuring equipment.

Quick reference. It was possible to mount various body versions on the frame part of ZIL limousines. It was then that the idea of ​​\u200b\u200bcreating a small truck arose. At that time, when he appeared on the street, he shocked absolutely everyone. Sadly, this project was quickly curtailed, so only a few copies were born. Nevertheless, there were those who were able to restore the forgotten car.

RemakeZIL-130 in a pickup truck

An employee of an automobile studio together with his assistants decided to take up the restoration of Cheburashka. Initially, they developed the idea of ​​building a pickup truck based on the Volga. The style of Ford Rancher and Chevrolet El Camino was considered as a prototype. The body of the new car was almost ready, but there was a snag with the supply of the V-8 engine. As a result, they began to consider other options, including the acquisition of another donor car.

One mutual friend helped out the designers, who proposed the development of the Ford E-250 Ecoline. The first pancake became lumpy (when they tried to put a "Volga" body on the American's frame). It turned out quite fun, but nothing more. After a series of long reflections rescued the case. The ZIL-130 fuel truck accidentally caught the eye of enthusiasts. The pickup truck, the photo of which is shown below, was customarily built on its basis.

And it's not just a mindless emotional decision. The specified truck optimally combined a combination of the best American models of the 50s, namely:

  • original round design;
  • panoramic glass;
  • wide wings;
  • optimal size for the selected frame.
Tuning ZIL pickup


Active work on the creation of a pickup truck with a ZIL-130 cab began with the search for this very element. A suitable option was purchased at a geological exploration base. The cabin with the "native" truck has been working since 1976 at the Pole, equipped with double glazing, alcohol layer, window bars, fur insulationinner part. True, the bottom had to be digested.

The radiator grill is taken from the first versions of 130 ZILs. It took a long time to find this part, because it was difficult to find a non-broken and rotten version. Again the case came to the rescue, the grille was found in one of the auto shops, and no one really could explain where it came from.

About Donor

As already mentioned, the donor was a Ford E-250 Econoline, which is a standard American full-size pickup truck. Its characteristics:

  • length - about 6000 mm;
  • width - 2000 mm;
  • curb weight - 2, 3 tons;
  • frame - powerful spar;
  • leading drive - rear axle;
  • transmission - automatic transmission;
  • engine displacement - 4.2 l;
  • rated power - 200 hp p.;
  • torque - 400 Nm.

In the donor, the Ford bus heater, which is quite impressive in size, was very noticeable. It was not possible to install this element with air conditioning on the newly created car (neither in the cab nor under the hood).

Alteration of ZIL into a pickup truck

Continue tuning pickup ZIL-130

One of the main stages was the shortening of the frame part. This need arose due to the not very convenient control of a pickup truck with a long base. Problems arise from the moment you leave the garage. As a result: the body, propeller shaft, gas tank, working lines were dismantled. After "cutting" the car took on a completely different look.

To set the domesticcabin on an American frame, the bottom and power structure of the Soviet car had to be radically redone. As a result, the lower part of the cabin remotely resembled a combination of a garbage can with a piece of granite. We also seriously approached the processing of the pedal system. The initial landing in Cheburashka is inconvenient, especially for tall people. The pedal assembly was moved forward by 150 millimeters, which made it possible to somewhat improve the situation. It became possible even to cross one leg (if you move back).

Major improvements

At this stage, to create a pickup truck based on the ZIL-130, work was carried out with the suspension, since the car below could not be made. This is due to the real bulkiness of the frame, even though the cabin is fixed at the lowest possible height. The front springs were shortened by one and a half turns. After cutting large elements, the car lay down on the bumpers, and a rework was required. The rear counterparts had some fiddling, but the process was a little easier.

Among the main problems:

  • difficulty with unscrewing soured and stuck fasteners in earring sleeves;
  • the need to select a certain category of steel;
  • The long wheelbase and the design nuances of the automatic transmission mount do not allow to reduce the ground clearance, when it is forcibly lowered, the car simply lies on the "belly".

As a result, the height of the ZIL pickup truck was 1900 mm (the standard parameter was 2400 mm). The front wheels were left the same, but the track was slightly increased by means of special spacers, tires were chosen R16 245/75. Behind worked splicing, tiresapproached type R16 295-315/70. A little time was carved out to work with the wings, turning ideas into reality. The design turned out to be unique, but with a commitment to the 50s of the past century.

Auto ZIL-pickup

Second option

Another version of ZIL pickup tuning also has the right to exist. True, it is presented in theory so far, so there is no step-by-step description of the work, but there is a clear idea of ​​the general principle of manipulation.

To start:

  1. Frame base - the native model remains with some shortening.
  2. Bridges - unchanged, with the possibility of adding components from American "colleagues". This will ensure the reliability of the assembly, the installation of disc brakes.
  3. Suspension - the spring assembly remains. Let it look a little brutal, but "cheap and cheerful." If you want to make a radical change, the pneumatic design will be the best solution, the parts for which can be found on the modern market without any problems.
  4. Twin wheels - always on the rear axle. Otherwise, the car will look awkward.
  5. Power unit with transmission - it is better to take from foreign analogues. Here the choice is quite wide. Suitable as a native V-8, and "Cummins", "Caterpillars" and the like.
Cabin for ZIL-pickup

Cab and Interior

Reshaping the cockpit itself for the sake of changing the proportions doesn't make much sense. A pickup truck based on ZIL should still remain a truck, albeit with a departure to a slightly differentclassification. Take at least the same Americans who are actively creating unique pickup trucks based on medium-duty vehicles. If desired, you can install a double cab, then some alterations will be required. Even the cabins of Cheburashka firefighters were once fitted, built up and welded on.

Salon equipment is another direction for introducing your own imagination and design solutions. First of all, it is necessary to provide decent noise and thermal insulation, modify the seats, steering wheel, dashboard, lighting. Further, the choice of modernization elements is practically unlimited. Alternatively, you can leave the minimum Spartan equipment.

Loading platform

It so happened historically that in the homeland of pickups, the cargo part of the car was used for the maximum transportation of goods from the store or firewood for a picnic. On the created model, you can do the same. If necessary, it is allowed to load and transport rather heavy, but compact items weighing up to several tons. For the manufacture of this element, you will need another pair of front fenders, sheet metal and a reinforcing profile attached to the base. All parts are selected in such a way that they can withstand the load that the chassis is oriented to.

Summing up all the above manipulations of the second version of tuning, it can be noted that this is a rather abstract project. To bring it to life will require a lot of money, time and effort. At the same time, no one will give you any guarantees for the possibility of legal movement on the roads. Besides,the participation of several diversified specialists will be required to help bring out and think through all the technical and structural nuances.

Fire truck ZIL pickup


It's very good that there are such enthusiasts who breathe a second life into forgotten or small-scale Soviet vehicles. Many of them were a real breakthrough in the automotive industry. Pickup ZIL "Cheburashka" is one of the most interesting projects that you can appreciate.

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