This car has seen it all. The rise and fall of the country that created it, its torments, convulsions and perestroika. He fought, built a peaceful life, made his way to the most inaccessible places where only goblin and kikimora are found, for which he received his nickname "Shishiga". And although, as all Europeans and extreme people love, they didn’t put a diesel engine on the GAZ 66, this did not prevent him from remaining an off-road conqueror.
He has always been a warrior, and his appearance is an unequivocal confirmation: a small, strong and maneuverable truck, capable of going everywhere and even landing from an airplane, was an eternal army hard worker and served his country to the best of his ability. His pedigree comes from another military vehicle - GAZ 63, which was replaced by "Shishiga". It appeared in 1964 and was mass-produced for thirty-five years.
GAZ 66 was not initially provided for diesel, as the power unit was used gasoline eight, in the usual version for 115 hp, and forced - for 195 hp.The truck was cabover, the engine was located in the cab under the casing, but thanks to this solution, the approach angle was 35°, the exit angle was 32°. This geometry, together with other technical solutions, provided "Shishige" with fantastic cross-country ability.
If we consider the GAZ 66 characteristics, it should be noted that the car had limited slip differentials in both axles, a transfer case with a demultiplier and the ability to turn on all-wheel drive. Power take-off up to 40 hp is provided. The car is equipped with a tire inflation system and a winch driven through the power take-off shaft.
The "Shishiga" had an ideal weight distribution, which, when landing, allowed him to land on all four wheels. In addition, the overall dimensions gave him the opportunity to be freely located in the fuselage of the aircraft. For GAZ 66, fuel consumption, especially in civilian life, was quite significant and amounted to at least 20 liters, and the amount of consumption depended on driving conditions and increased off-road.
It was a purely utilitarian car, it practically did not have any devices and components to ensure comfort - considerable physical strength and skill were required to drive a car. Even the gearshift lever was located behind the driver and required certain skills in making the necessary shifts. But all the inconveniences were compensated simply by the incredible cross-country ability of the car.
Questionexcessive appetite "Shishiga" worried the designers. In 1990, a diesel engine appeared on the GAZ 66, but the power of such an engine was only 85 hp, and in the future this modification was forgotten. Although amateurs have repeatedly installed diesel and got very good results.
Of course, if a diesel engine were serially installed on the GAZ 66, then the characteristics of the car would change for the better, but even without that "Shishiga" demonstrates unique off-road patency, and as an army vehicle it has many different modifications - from a communication vehicle to a technical flyer and a staff car. Shishiga has come a long way and has always been the best.