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Video 2014 Neoplan-Skyliner
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MAN - History 1

As we would like to look at the history of the Machine Factory Augsburg Nürnberg more from the aspect of motor vehicle technology, there is perhaps one key-picture showing the companys development in this field. In this picture, Rudolf Diesel, Heinrich von Buz** and Professor Moritz Schröter, are shown at the general meeting of the association of German engineers (Verein Deutscher Ingenieure) on the 16th of June 1897. Diesel, the most elegant of the three, is on the left and has his arm hooked in with that of von Buz. His top-hat makes him almost as tall as von Buz, who is standing casually in the middle and although much older, was also very well dressed. On the right, next to the other two, is the somewhat more nondescript and smaller Schröter, who had just reported, quite ecstatically, about the acceptance of the world's first Diesel engine.

After nearly four years of trial, error and confusion, one had succeeded in getting the Diesel engine to run. More than 28 percent efficiency had been measured. A peak result, which indicated the nearing demise of the steam engine, if there were not the, despite the world-wide jubilation about the new engine, considerable difficulties of putting it into operational practice. Indeed, for the moment the three men were obviously content with what had been achieved, for which they had every reason ...

Heinrich von Buz (1833-1918) was at the time, the long-standing director of the Machine Factory Augsburg (Maschinenfabrik Augsburg). The merger with Nürnberg would only take place one year later. He led the company from 1864 to 1913 and turned a factory with 400 workers into a major concern with 15.000 employees. He was the first 'graduated' head of the company since it's foundation in 1840 by Ludwig Sander, a noted personality and owner of several enterprises in Augsburg. Indeed, The 250-year celebration is based on the foundation of the St. Antonin Iron-Works (Eisenhütte) in 1758. But more about that later.

The original reason for founding the company, was to supply the local textile industry with machines, which up to this time, had to be imported. The quality of the delivered products was however, sometimes so poor, that the main customer complained bitterly. Generally speaking, the slowly developing industry in the various parts of Germany was still a long way away from the quality-slogan 'Made in Germany' which was later used. The development of the company started to become more interesting when two new directors came in, Carl August Reichenbach and Carl Buz, Heinrich von Buz's father.

The range of products was then extended to serve other essential areas, namely, steam- and printing machines, the latter which were peppered with their own inventions and after a short time, were also ready for export. This division would become so successful that, until 2006, they operated as a MAN subsidiary, and still today, MAN holds 35 percent of the shares. 05/14

*only from 1907 onwards with the nobility title ‚von'

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Translator: Don Leslie - Email:

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