The VW Schwimmwagen (Porsche Type 128 and Type 166) was an amphibious vehicle used extensively by the German Wehrmacht and the Waffen-SS during the Second World War. It was mechanically based on the Kübelwagen (which in turn was based on the civilian Volkswagen, later known as a VW Beetle), and was produced by the Volkswagen factory at Wolfsburg, with the bodies (or rather hulls) produced by Ambi Budd in Berlin. Erwin Komenda, Ferdinand Porsche's first car body designer, developed the car body construction. Komenda patented his ideas for the swimming car at the German Patent office. 15,125 Schwimmwagen cars were produced during the Second World War, out of which about 125 remain today. All Schwimmwagen were four wheel drive only on first and reverse gears with some models and ZF self lock diff on all models (even the earlier Type 128, based on the full-length Kübelwagen chassis (2.4 m (7.9 ft) wheelbase). The large-scale production models (Type 166) had a wheel-base of only 2.0 m (6.6 ft).
Schwimmwagen is German for "Swim Wagon"/"Swim Car".
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