Moskvich-402 is a compact car, produced by Soviet automobile maker MZMA and launched for the first time in 1956. It’s the successor of the 401 series and is one of the most popular mass vehicles of its time.
Urban Explorers from the Comdig Urban Exploration Group found an abandoned and old Soviet Moskvich-402 at the underground parking in Moscow.
Where and when was Moskvich-402 made?
Production of the 402 started in 1956 in Moscow and two years later 94,080 units were assembled. In 1958 the 407 hit the assembly lines to reach a production run of 359,980 copies. In 1962 it was replaced by the 403 that remained in production until 1965.
In comparison with its predecessor, the Moskvitch-401, the M-402 model featured many improvements which included independent suspension with double wishbones, telescopic shock absorbers, 12-volt electrics, more solid and comfortable car body, more modern trunk, heater, standard car radio, wider viewing range for the driver.
The History of Moskvich-402
This Moskvitch-402 could be considered as the first car in Soviet Russia that was offered in customer-adapted trim levels and application-based body versions. Speaking of technologies, the 402 series was a major leap forward compared to the 401 that it replaced. The new model featured independent suspension with double wishbones, telescopic shock absorbers, 12-volt electrics, more solid and comfortable car body, more modern trunk, and wider viewing range for the driver.
Chief designer was Alexander F. Andronov. He managed to organize a relatively small group of works to create a radically new design of the car than was in the production of “Moskvich-400 / 401” – the previous model, it has retained, and then in modified form, only the engine, gearbox and rear axle gearbox.
The first prototypes of the new “Moskvich” were ready in 1951. The styling of the Moskvitch-402 followed the fashion set by similar-sized cars of its time such as the Hillman Minx, FIAT 1100, Ford Prefect 100E, Jowett Javelin, and Ford Consul Mk1, as well as by the larger GAZ-21 Volga, whose designers took part in the creation of this car.
One of three experienced “Moskvich-402”, passed the state tests in February 1955, was exhibited at the Exhibition of Economic Achievements. The first instance of the serial was released on April 20, 1956.
In 1958, among other changes, the engine was replaced with MZMA’s OHV development, which allowed the car to obtain a maximum speed increase up to 115 kilometres per hour (71 mph) and significantly reduced the level of noise. At 4,055 mm (159.6 in) overall, it was 200 mm (7.9 in) longer than the 401.
During its lifecycle, the model was exported to several Western countries, including Norway where it was a good offering on the market, considering its low import taxes and good durability. A total of 18,019 units were exported.
Moskvich-402 Technical Details
At the first, the model had a classic front-engine, rear-wheel-drive layout that combines the work of a 1.2-liter flathead petrol engine with 35 horsepower (26 kilowatts) and a three-speed manual gearbox. In 1958 the motor was replaced by a slightly bigger 1.3-liter engine, channeling 45 hp (34 kW) to the rear wheels through a new four-speed manual gearbox.
Photos of Abandoned Moskvich-402
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