The UMM Alter II Turbodiesel 4×4


That is an UMM Alter II, it’s a Portuguese-built, French-designed four-wheel drive that’s in all probability finest identified for 2 issues – it’s mentioned to have completed 100% of the Paris-Dakar Rallies it entered, and it was chosen because the Popemobile when Pope John Paul II visited Portugal.

The quirky appears to be like of the Alter II have attracted a whole lot of consideration through the years, it was designed as a purely utilitarian automobile with one of the best off-road potential with the bottom doable price, and it proved standard with varied militaries and police forces.

Quick Details – The UMM Alter II 4×4

  • The UMM Alter II is a considerably uniquely styled 4×4 with a brief, steeply slanted nostril for optimum visibility of ahead terrain. It was designed in France by automotive agency Cournil and in-built Portugal between 1986 to 1994 with roughly 10,000 accomplished.
  • The Alter II has a metal ladder body chassis, dwell entrance and rear axles, a front-mounted engine powering all 4 wheels by both a 4 or 5-speed transmission and switch case.
  • Quite a lot of engines had been provided through the years, eight in whole, starting from the 75 bhp 2.5 liter naturally aspirated diesel as much as the 150 bhp 3.0 V6 petrol engine.
  • Many examples of the UMM Alter II stay in service at the moment and spare elements are nonetheless obtainable from the corporate Europeças. The overwhelming majority of Alter Its are in Europe nevertheless there are a selection in Africa and South America.

Bernard Cournil

To inform the story of the UMM Alter II you really want to return to the early twentieth century when an automotive firm named Cournil was based in France by Bernard Cournil.

Above Video: This footage from the 1993 Paris-Dakar Rally, if you happen to skip ahead to the 8:19 mark you’ll see the UMM Alter II pushed by Francisco Sande of Portugal.

The corporate was initially an car workshop however throughout WWII, because the oil both ran out or was rationed, he specialised in changing automobiles to run on a wood-based gasoline named Gazogene.

After the conflict Bernard noticed a possibility to place all of the leftover American Jeeps to good use, and so he started changing them for farm and agricultural use. Ultimately he signed a license settlement to assemble Willys Jeeps regionally in France.

Over time the Jeeps being assembled by Cournil had been modified, as much as the purpose the place Bernard and his crew determined to simply develop their very own 4×4 automobile, utilizing as many pre-existing elements as doable.

Image DescriptionThe inside of later model Alter IIs was nicely designed by the requirements of the period, definitely on par with related choices from Land Rover and Jeep.

In 1960 the corporate launched the Cournil Tracteur JA1, a tricky 4×4 automobile with a chassis developed and constructed by Cournil. The physique was additionally designed and in-built home, however many different main elements like engines, transmissions, and axles had been sourced from different producers.

From 1961 onwards the physique fashion was modified to incorporate the steeply inclined entrance finish, a function that might develop into synonymous with Cournil and the SIMI and UMM autos that might comply with.

In 1977 Council was bought to 2 corporations, “Groupe Gévelot” bought the French rights and UMM of Portugal bought the worldwide rights.

The UMM Alter II

Pronounced “U-M-M” quite than “Umm,” the corporate title stands for União Metalo-Mecânica in Portuguese or “Steel-Mechanical Union” in English. The corporate is a Portuguese steel works manufacturing unit and former car producer primarily based in Lisbon.

UMM Alter II 9

Image DescriptionThe Alter IIs steeply raked nostril was designed to make sure that drivers would have excelled visibility over ahead terrain.

UMM had acquired the rights to Cournil designs again within the late Nineteen Seventies, and by the mid-Eighties there was a brand new up to date design obtainable from SIMI, the corporate who had taken over the French rights holder.

The brand new design was put into manufacturing in Portugal and named the UMM Alter II. As with the earlier Cournil/SIMI designs the Alter II was powerful, easy, and highly-capable off-road. It has dwell axles entrance and rear on leaf springs, a metal ladder chassis, and a easy angular physique with a steeply inclined nostril for higher visibility.

Eight totally different engines had been provided, from a 75 bhp 2.5 liter naturally aspirated diesel as much as the 150 bhp 3.0 V6 petrol engine, nevertheless the two.5 liter turbodiesels had been the most typical. Comfortable and exhausting prime variations had been provided in addition to civilian, army, and police specification variants.

Roughly 10,000 had been made in whole and lots of stay in service to today, with spare elements obtainable by Europeças.

UMM Alter II Paris Dakar Rally 1

Image DescriptionA quantity if Alters competed within the Paris-Dakar Rally through the years, although unconfirmed it’s been claimed that everybody that was ever entered managed to complete the occasion.

The 1993 UMM Alter II Proven Right here

The automobile you see right here is an UMM Alter II from 1993, the second final yr of manufacturing.

It was imported from Spain in December 2021 after a rebuild that included a brand new paint job, a newly upholstered inside, and a few engine work on the two.5 liter turbodiesel. The cooling system was additionally changed as had been the braking elements.

As a later instance of the model this Alter II is fitted with the fascinating 5-speed transmission which sends energy again by a dual-range switch case to all 4 wheels. It has a black canvas gentle prime, a swing-out spare tire provider, a roll cage, and a Continental stereo.

It’s at present being provided on the market out of Plymouth, Massachusetts on Convey A Trailer. Should you’d prefer to learn extra about it or place a bid you’ll be able to go to the itemizing right here.

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UMM Alter II
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Pictures courtesy of Convey A Trailer

UMM Alter II 3


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