This is an original Steyr-Puch Pinzgauer 712 6×6, it’s an Austrian off-road vehicle that was originally developed in the late 1960s for military use. Nicknamed the “Pinz” my some military operators, the vehicle is one of the most capable off-roaders in its class.
Both 4×4 and 6×6 variants of the Pinzgauer were made, both had 5-speed manual transmissions with 2-speed transfer cases, portal axles, and unusual axles that are articulated where the half shaft meet the differential housing – resulting rugged all-independent suspension.
Fast Facts – The Steyr-Puch Pinzgauer 712 6×6
- The Steyr-Puch Pinzgauer 712 6×6 is one of the rarer variants of the unusual Austrian off-road vehicle – the vast majority were built in 4×4 configuration.
- The Pinzgauer was made from 1971 until 2000 by Steyr-Daimler-Puch in Austria before production was taken over by BAE Systems in England, who kept it in production until 2007.
- The design of the Pinzgauer was revolutionary for the late 1960s. It makes use of a central tube chassis, portal gears at each wheel, and an unusual independent suspension system on all axles.
- The Pinzgauer 712 6×6 you see here was modified for use as an all-terrain ambulance. It’s now being offered for sale out of Prescott, Arizona and it would make an ideal starting point for an unusual camper/motorhome.
Named After A Cow?
The Steyr-Puch Pinzgauer was named after the Pinzgauer domestic cattle breed from Salzburg in Austria. On the face of it it might seem odd to name an off-road vehicle after a cow, but the Pinzgauer breed was famous in Austria for its toughness and versatility – able to perform well pulling carts, producing milk, and for beef production.
The Steyr-Puch Pinzgauer was designed to be similarly tough and multi-functional, variations of the vehicle would be used for everything from anti-aircraft gun platforms and ambulances, to troop transport and artillery towing.
So well designed was the Pinzgauer that it would remain in production, with updates, from 1971 until 2007.
The Steyr-Puch Pinzgauer
When the engineers at Steyr-Daimler-Puch set out to create the successor to the popular Steyr-Daimler-Puch Haflinger they must have known they had their work cut out for them. The small but highly-capable Haflinger was well-liked by its military buyers, and any successor had to be better than it in every feasible way.
They started by designing an all-new steel central tube chassis (see the picture of it above) with unusual axles that gave a simple form of all-independent suspension. The axle half shafts are articulated where they meet the differential housing, offering limited up/down movement to help improve off-road ability.
An air-cooled petrol engine was chosen to head the drivetrain, it was as simple as possible to make fixes in the field as simple as possible. It was mated to a 5-speed manual transmission and a 2-speed transfer case, benign power to either all four or all six wheels depending on the configuration.
As noted above the Pinzgauer could be modified to fulfill a wide range of military roles, and they have been used by armed forces around the world including Austria, New Zealand, Argentina, the UK, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Lithuania, and many more – the United States ordered a few in the 1990s for use by their elite Delta Force commandos.
Many of the surviving Pinzgauers have now been bought by civilian owners, some of whom keep them in their original military configuration and some of whom convert them into campers for off-road adventures.
The Steyr-Puch Pinzgauer 712 6×6 Shown Here
The vehicle you see here is an unusual Steyr-Puch Pinzgauer 712 6×6 from 1974 that is said to have been converted by German coachbuilder Miesen for use as an ambulance.
It now looks like a set piece from a Wes Anderson film and it would potentially make a perfect candidate for conversion into a motorhome thanks to its longer wheelbase and high ceilings.
This Pinzagauer is fitted with body-color 16″ steel wheels are mounted with 265/75 BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A KO tires. It’s also equipped with driver-side storage boxes, side rub strips, a rear pintle hitch, a heater, steel checker plate floor coverings, and sliding windows with locks.
It’s worth noting that the tires will all need to be replaced as they are showing signs of cracking due to age, and there are some rust areas in the body which will need to be addressed sooner rather than later.
If you’d like to read more about this unusual six-wheel drive or place a bid you can visit the listing here on Bring a Trailer. It’s being offered for sale out of Prescott, Arizona.
Images courtesy of Bring a Trailer
Articles that Ben has written have been covered on CNN, Popular Mechanics, Smithsonian Magazine, Road & Track Magazine, the official Pinterest blog, the official eBay Motors blog, BuzzFeed, Autoweek Magazine, Wired Magazine, Autoblog, Gear Patrol, Jalopnik, The Verge, and many more.
Silodrome was founded by Ben back in 2010, in the years since the site has grown to become a world leader in the alternative and vintage motoring sector, with well over a million monthly readers from around the world and many hundreds of thousands of followers on social media.