Czech inventors

Snowmobile Tatra V855


Tatra V855 is a snowmobile prototyped under German occupation in 1942. A thousand miles east, the Wehrmacht was engaged in expeditionary warfare against the Soviet Union, an adversary with no shortage of winter conditions.

The base for the V855 was Tatra's T87 sedan, a barely disguised spaceship designed by Hans Ledwinka. Lacking rear wheels, the 75 HP produced by the V855's rear-mounted air-cooled 2.9-liter V8 is directed to a giant propeller mounted above the engine and a trailing drum which also acts as a brake. Steering is by the two pairs of skis. The drum was also used as a brake. Hand brakes acted on the rear skis.

The V855 never saw production: the project was cancelled after two prototypes.