Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Guzzi Mule 3X3

We've all seen the picture above, a man in a jaunty hat driving a weird vehicle which appears to be scaling a wall. This vehicle was the result of a military contract delivered to Moto Guzzi in the late 1950s. Moto Guzzi was already producing the Motocarri, a three wheel motorcycle/truck. 
This Mechnical Mule was completely different. It featured a newly designed utility V twin engine of 750cc driving a transmission with 6 speeds plus reverse. Shaft drive drove both the rear wheels by individual propeller shafts and the front wheel by means of a torque dividing differential. Bogie wheels behind the rear wheels could be outfitted with tracks for more traction. Quite the complicated device but it must have worked well enough, about 200 of these things were built between 1960 and 1963.
 The man that Moto Guzzi had given the design job to was Giulio Carcano, whose previous design work had been the tremendous 500 cc V8 racer of 1955-57, producing near 80 hp at 12,000 rpm. It must have been a real comedown for the man, it was his last work for Guzzi, he resigned in 1963.  
Moto Guzzi's next motorcycle was the V700, powered by a shaft drive 700cc V twin, apparently intended for police use. It was first shown to the public in 1965 but not actually sold till 1967. This powertrain has formed the basis for the company's lineup and is still in use today.


Graham Clayton said...

Was the rear platform designed for passengers or the carrying of goods?

Mister G said...

It was a utility device, considered a tractor but the one (poor quality) photo I can find shows a second person standing on the platform. It's smaller than it looks.

Mister G said...

I added that image to the post.