It was not at all easy to be able to meet in Oppeano, a municipality in the province of Verona located on the state road 434, the same that leads to the 8 rgt genius paratroopers thunderbolt, the very committed Dr. Alessandro Pozzani, the only one in Italy able to do "re-vamping", that is to readapt for industrial uses the industrial vehicles alienated by the Armed Forces.
Pozzani, receives me inside the firm with exquisite cordiality. There is also a nice black cat - not surprisingly a feline - who watches me curiously before continuing his tour freely among the many military vehicles lined up as if they were under the roof of a barracks.
This entrepreneur is a striking character: he could follow a promising career as a lawyer, but his passion for adventure and the restructuring of vehicles led him to become an international point of reference for heavy and special 4x4.
Very well known in the Italian Armed Forces, he has been collaborating for some time with the Ministry of Defense which allows him to collect lots of vehicles being disposed of in barracks throughout Italy. But it is above all a point of reference for Iveco Defense Vehicles from which it occasionally collects prototypes, various experimental materials, frames used in ballistic tests, latest generation engines of the MUV 70.20, cabins and much more, thanks to its company, the TRUCK 4X4 DVD, which manages to give means and materials a second life worthy of planning efforts and costs incurred at the origin.
I could even call it a skilled optimizer and, if there are no spare parts, with a lathe and milling machine, it is able to create any detail, such as the crossbow biscuits.
I know, you want me to talk to you about the LMV first Lynx "by Ferrari", but immediately afterwards there will be other curious news on Alessandro Pozzani's TRUCK 4X4 DVD.
Un Lynx that changes color
I added â€śby Ferrariâ€ť after Alessandro told me that the idea started from Luca Cordero di Montezemolo, former president of Ferrari. Montezemolo had asked Iveco, an exclusive civil version of the LMV for a tour in India, to be faced with two Ferraris Scaglietti testimonial of the event. The Lynx granted by Iveco came out of the same production of tacticians but with the only difference, compared to the military, of being devoid of auxiliary defense systems and massive armor.
The initial color of the LMV, considered the Ferrari event, was the characteristic Scaglietti red, an expensive and patented shade of paint but, at the end of the lucky tour, the Italian feline was parked in Iveco's squares in Bolzano as a real relic (after all the nickname among the soldiers who have appreciated the qualities in the theater of operations is San Lince!). How many collectors or enthusiasts would like a commercial version ...
Then Terence Hill arrived
Actually, ours Lynx, still on the square, he did not stay long: the RAI production directed by Enrico Oldoini, had identified the ideal medium for the filming of the film "A step from the sky" in the example LMV wanted by Montezemolo. The only problem was that the vehicle shone with a Rosso Scaglietti, while for the production of the film, it was necessary to paint it white with the green lettering of the State Forestry Corps. A livery perhaps a little unusual for the former Forestry.
In the film, the sympathetic Terence Hill acted as a senior CFS inspector and on board the LMV inspected the most enchanting peaks of our country. The film also went well abroad, and Iveco performed a shrewd operation by making its own vehicle known through a successful serial. Almost certainly, someone will be sorry to paint the prestigious and exclusive Scaglietti red paint to make room for the distinctive Fiat glossy white.
I tried it
It can only move with test plates, but fortunately Alessandro's structure is in the countryside, an ideal terrain for an average 4X4 designed to tackle really extreme situations. Everything is original on the tactical combat vehicle, also its 3.0 cc engine from 190 horses F1C.
The first cold impression is a guide halfway between the off-road vehicle and the truck, even if the exterior mirrors are deceiving, its bulk is only apparently subject to a two-volume automobile line.
This version is clearly "... light ...", 4,5 tons, and the only missing detail is the hatch at the central operator. Or rather there is the drawing printed on the sheet but there is no trap door.
The antireflection instrumentation is the same as the military LMV, even if some "top secret" functions are evidently disabled. The pneumatic part has some references to Eurocargo and I must say that the interior space is not lacking; despite the simple assembly of the controls - many assembled on screwed panels - it is really full of keys and functions: it reminds me of the console of a modern bus, a bit confusing at first.
Clear instrumentation of pure Iveco production for the windshield wiper lever, windscreen washer, horn or light switches, while the three-spoke steering wheel is very enthralled as a heavy vehicle and not as an off-road vehicle, perhaps with more direct and automotive steering.
Precisely for this particular reason, I was immediately reminded of the confidence of a soldier with many ribbons, who told me a while ago that he doesn't drive like an SUV. It's so true!
The engine is ready and powerful and relatively without too much electronics and, if it is dropped on the lawn, it tends to oversteer, or rather just drift, because the tail is immediately automatically picked up by a greater percentage of torque transferred to the front axle.
Four huge wheels, emphasize even more the already massive bulk making this white cat, the Light Medium Vehicle, even more compelling. When I look for the gearbox, while driving, the hand ends up on the small T-lever of the five-speed ZF automatic system, a real limitation for me at least that I love to duplicate with this kind of means, but the answer is so immediate that it makes the dialogue between driver and vehicle. At each lunge the Lynx part decided and majestic transmitting from the inside of his cockpit an almost almost omnipotent feeling.
The change, like on heavy vehicles, does not have the "P" position (parking) and at the end you have to remember not to push the lever at the bottom, otherwise insert the back, but you have to bring it to "N" and activate the handbrake before releasing the brake pedal.
It is important to become familiar with frontal measurements; in my opinion it would be unsuitable in urban traffic especially if equipped with an additional front winch that cannot be seen from the driver's seat. I did some reversing, even when cornering, and it turned out to be well maneuverable but, as already mentioned, it has slightly undersized mirrors and the optimum is reached, without fear of making a mistake, with training planned by the Army.
The glasses are sealed with silicone, but it is not raining and therefore I cannot tell you if the humidity filters inside. Surely it is a means worthy of the success it is receiving. A great climber with a lot of power reserve; the high center of gravity had penalized him in the first series with turret, today it is stable and conductive with military license 6 / A or C civil if demilitarized.
The rear doors also open with the ignition key.
The novelty is the exchange, giving to have in the barracks
An unknown concept to the older ones of military life, but today an intelligent reality and used in all the barracks of Italy, as Alessandro Pozzani tells, very entrenched in the law. In fact, he was the first to succeed, with the collaboration of the then young Ten. amm. comm. Valter Consalvi, in service to the 8 Â° rgt genius guastatori thunderbolt and graduated in law, to take action following the provisions of the 23 Law December 2005 No. 266 art. 1 comm. 568 and 569.
We could argue that the exchange of services affects even more the interest in keeping in good condition also the means destined for alienation by age by raising their value in an eventual bargaining agreement.
Thanks to the text of Law 266 of the 23 / 12 / 05 today, for accredited operators, it is possible to apply directly to the barracks or CERIMANT, where the units of disused vehicles or materials are concentrated. A novelty that lowers the considerable costs of storing movable property for the state, keeping them mostly in the original allocation locations.
Everything is subscribed in detail and a department can request in addition to the money a correspondent of the value in the form of goods and services, for example, new computers, infrastructure maintenance, equipment for personnel, spare parts, work to refurbish buildings as Alessandro already has made in Sicily, etc.
In short, the modern department commanders have in fact also become entrepreneurs for the procurement and maintenance of their regiment, especially in a period where the cuts to the defense are often in contradiction with the needs.
The company of dr. Pozzani, the TRUCK 4X4 DVD, although small but very dynamic, has a fleet of about 100 units, many with very few kilometers, but soon brought to new life after the accurate rigorous restorations and the guaranteed changes to each of them. Some media, think a little, will come back to serve the public interest and infrastructure, but we'll talk about this in future stories ...
In short, a reality, that of the exchange, which among the most conservative of the military method could arouse nostalgia for the elephant system of the state that managed, supplied and disposed of its assets, but the perception, at least personal, is of an undesirable will of the sector to renew and modernize this method, which would lead to an optimization of costs and also, hopefully, to an even more concrete professional enhancement of the operators with the stars. After all, efficiency and modernity are the watchwords in the most advanced Armed Forces.
Off Road 4x4
Do you remember the Overland orange trucks around the planet's most insidious mud? Here at Truck4X4 of Oppeano, the 330.30 ANW Iveco - the orange muzzles - were at home and Alessandro still keeps the VM90 of the expedition leader, the friendly friend Beppe Tenti.
But the adventure continues as well as the production of four-wheel drive super trucks often fitted on former military vehicles - such as the ACTL 8x8 - and, after listening to the customer's needs, Alessandro is able to design and supply the most suitable vehicle in based on the adventure you want to tackle, always without fail 4X4. Speaking of extreme adventures I believe that big news will soon be released on the media by TRUCK 4X4 DVD.
Among the various retreats in the Pozzani fleet there is a curious and eye-catching LMV in vegetated, perfect livery, so much so that there is the desire to open the door to climb it. In reality it is an exhibition prototype made of wood, as is customary, before starting real production.
A praise and a greeting
To the General Staff of Defense, to its commander gen. Enzo Vecciarelli and to all the women and men of the Armed Forces at the next 2 June. Thank you, you are our pride!