In the early 1970s, the capital AZLK stood at a crossroads. In his design bureaus, samples of completely new models were created to replace the Moskvich-412, but their development required a radical re-equipment of the newly built new buildings of the enterprise. But then almost new imported equipment would have to be written off. But still had to recoup the currency spent on it. Meanwhile, the demand for the obsolete 412th abroad, and in the country, was falling rapidly. Therefore, the Minavtoprom worked out a Solomon solution - to conduct a deep restyling of the current model in order to pull it up to modern requirements with a little blood. So in the end it turned out "Moskvich-2140". But it turns out that in parallel, a similar work was ordered by Porsche Engineering. Here are the first published photos of the German version of the modernization of Moskvich-412.
In 1973, in his letter attached to the report on work on Moskvich-412, Porsche Chairman Ernst Furman drew the attention of the Deputy Chairman of the USSR State Committee for Science and Technology D. Gvishiani to the following: “The proposed changes will not affect the price significantly machines, but they will significantly improve consumer qualities, thereby stimulating exports.” Designers from Germany did not radically change the look of the car, like Moscow. They tried to get by with small cosmetics (darkened radiator trim, a different typeface of the nameplate on the trunk) and the main body panels were not touched. Perhaps only due to the fact that the existing budget did not have a serious overhaul?
The interior design offered original solutions - for example, the internal handles of door locks combined with armrests. And the upholstery pattern (left) is more in tune with the then fashion than the one that appeared later on the 2140 model.
Porsche specialists worked within the framework of existing elements, not trying to radically change them. This is clearly seen in the layout of the instrument cluster, where the scales and control symbols are a little ennobled, but remained in their original places. They also improved safety - they tried to hide all the outstanding pens in niches.
German designers added to the standard Moskvich seats what was already sorely lacking - lateral support (small) and head restraints. The future 2140 received both, but a slightly different form.
"Porsche" proposed to increase the volume of the trunk by installing a spare tire vertically and enclosing it in a casing.
NEW FAMILY FOR AZLK
Porsche considered that the new Moskvich should not be too large: its main dimensions are smaller than the future AZLK-2141. But the basic option was chosen sedan, but because it still came out a little longer than the "forty-first." Please note: the drive is on the rear wheels, while the transition to the front drives has become massive. But for the conservative USSR, the Germans decided to leave the "classics".
It is clear that the 412th could not live forever, therefore already in 1974, again in defiance of the designers of the AZLK, the Minavtoprom ordered Porsche to develop a model lineup for the new generation of Muscovites. Then there was still no complete certainty in the features of the new car, even the legendary order to copy the French Simka, which killed all previous achievements, appeared much later. All the more interesting, as the Moskvich specialists saw the German company.
First of all, a large resource was laid in the design, which implies minimal wear of parts and assemblies, as well as high resistance of the body to corrosion. Recall that it was in those years that Porsche developed the project of the “perpetual” car, and later the first to use galvanized body for serial cars. The phrase featured in the report: “A large resource of the car is a component of economy. It saves raw materials, energy and labor.” And one more: "Good access to components and assemblies facilitates repairs and significantly reduces maintenance time."
The Germans offered a range of eight bodies. Some seem clearly superfluous - for example, a two-door sedan and station wagon, as well as a sports coupe. But in the range was a utilitarian all-terrain vehicle: with large wheels, a limited-slip differential, other gear ratios in the box, but without all-wheel drive - to maintain an acceptable price. However, the Germans, apparently with an eye on our impassability, nevertheless attributed: "To provide for the possibility of creating a full-fledged all-terrain vehicle."
For the family, they planned four- and six-cylinder engines, not only carburetor, but also injection ones. The power of the “fours” lay in the range of 60–120 hp. They also offered several diesel engines. The six-cylinder versions relied on an automatic transmission and power steering.
In the mid-1970s, Porsche commissioned a restyling project for the VAZ-2103, the most advanced Togliatti model at that time. The state company Vneshtekhnika acted as a customer, which collaborated with a German bureau under an agreement on design and experimental work. Changes to the exterior and interior were necessary due to the tightening of European safety requirements. At the same time, we planned to improve aerodynamics, reduce the noise level - internal and external. The Porsche also picked up more successful suspension settings, increased the anticorrosive protection of the body, and changed the engine's characteristics to European eco-standards. Some of these proposals are implemented on production VAZ models with indexes 2105 and 2107.
SOME WORKS ON THE DEVELOPMENT OF UNITS AND SYSTEMS THAT WERE PORSCHE FIRM ON THE VAZ-2108 PROTOTYPE:
The need for fine-tuning: to choose the optimal compression ratio, improve power performance, adjust cold and hot start, increase the efficiency of the cooling system, fulfill the requirements for emissions and noise.
What was finalized: they increased crankcase rigidity, applied more modern methods of working surfaces treatment, selected Solex carburetor settings to reduce harmful emissions and fuel consumption, increased the life of the exhaust system, altered the water pump.
The need for refinement: low resource of synchronizers and clutch, poor informativeness of the clutch pedal, increased effort when shifting gears (especially at low temperature), noise, leaky joints.
What was finalized: synchronizers (re-designed), clutch, differential, wheel drives, shift mechanism (re-designed).
The need for refinement: mediocre ride, stability and controllability, low resource and fuzzy operation of the steering mechanism, flaws in ergonomics, vibration on the steering wheel.
What was finalized: front and rear suspensions, steering (all developed anew), steering wheel (optimization), pedal assembly (kinematics), brakes (optimization).
The need for refinement: non-compliance with the requirements for passive safety (frontal and side impacts), insufficient body rigidity, leaks, mediocre aerodynamics, ventilation and heating flaws.
What was finalized: the front part to the rack, the power elements of the floor and the fastening of seats and belts, roof reinforcements, the design of doors, hood, bumpers, glazing, gas tank fastening, dashboard, door and ceiling trim, seats, heating and ventilation (redesigned).
The need for refinement: setting the ignition to work on engines with different degrees of compression, general notes on electrical components, flaws in the layout, assembly of nodes, laying of wire harnesses.
What was finalized: ignition system, generator, starter, lighting, radiator fan, heater fan, instrument cluster, rear window cleaner, audio system, many controls.