MAN Truck & Bus has unveiled a special version of its TGE range, with a go anywhere attitude!
The TGE 3.180 4×4 combi van is equipped with special caterpillar drive to enable it to drive over snow-covered slopes or muddy meadows.
The initiative for the conversion came from the two van salesmen in the Austrian state of Tyrol: Thomas Kofler and Fabian Bonora. What has emerged amazes everyone who sees the vehicle.
The high-terrain transporter can be used, for example, by ski lift operators in mountainous regions. Since it is a TGE combi van with a total of 8 seats plus a driver’s seat, it can transport people as well as goods. The conversion can be applied to the entire range of vans, so it can also be used, for example, to equip a panel van or a double cab with a flatbed.
The amazing thing: Conversion to the caterpillar drive takes not more than an hour. The assembly or disassembly is done like a wheel change, it is not necessary to visit a special workshop. An adapter plate, which is fixed with the original wheel bolts, establishes the connection to the axles. The simple conversion also makes it possible to use the van all year round if it’s required: Caterpillar drive in winter, tyres in summer. The additional weight compared with the regular equipment with tyres is approximately 300 kilograms. The width of the TGE increases to 2.40 meters.
Off-road, the caterpillar drive manages 25 to 50 km/h and is usually in 1st to 3rd gear of the 8-speed automatic transmission recommended for this application. Thanks to the Seikel chassis, which is raised by around 3 cm, the Innsbruck crawler transporter also has sufficient ground clearance to perform its tasks in extreme terrain. The caterpillar drive is braked by the standard disc brakes; no adjustment is required here. However, the converted caterpillar TGE is not allowed to drive on the road, for which it then needs its tyres back.