UNIC Cars and Trucks Puteaux France

        Unic                                 Unic

Founded 1905
Defunct 1938 (last automobiles manufactured: continued as a manufacturer of commercial vehicles)
1952 (sold to Simca)
Headquarters Puteaux, France
Key people
Georges Richard (founder)
Baron Henri de Rothschild (main investor)
Products Automobiles
commercial vehicles
1909 Unic taxi a1909 Unic taxi cab

1909 Unic taxi

Taxicab 1909

Unic was a French manufacturer founded in 1905, and active as an automobile producer until July 1938. After this the company continued to produce commercial vehicles, retaining its independence for a further fourteen years before being purchased in 1952 by Henri Pigozzi, who was keen to develop Unic as a commercial vehicle arm of the then flourishing Simca business.


Unic was founded by Georges Richard after he left Richard-Brasier. In 1905 Richard had a meeting with the entrepreneur-financier Baron Henri de Rothschild and obtained funding for the creation of the “société anonyme des automobiles Unic“, based at Puteaux. The objective was to manufacture “unique” (rather than mainstream) vehicles, and at the start the company made only light cars and taxis with two-cylinder and four-cylinder engines.

The taxi business would remain important to Unic for more than three decades, while Rothschild’s steady financial support through good times and bad, provided stability which sustained the business, critically during the immediate post-war years.

Growth and diversification

Although the manufacturer’s initial range was restricted to light cars, their popularity as taxis led to the production of delivery vans and other small utility style vehicles. The 1943 cc 12 CV (9 kW) four-cylinder model (used mainly as a taxi) was extremely successful and survived in production for nearly 20 years. (The engine was enlarged later to 2120 cc.) During World War I, taxis made by the company participated in the Marne operation. After World War I, a new four-cylinder (1847 cc) was offered, along with the taxis.

First truck and founder’s death

In 1922 the firm introduced a three-ton truck, called the Unic MSC, which marked the start of a switch towards production of larger commercial vehicles. 1922 was also the year when the founder of Unic, Georges Richard, died while awaiting transfer to a Paris clinic, following a motor accident en route to Rouen. Georges Dubois, hitherto in charge of vehicle testing, took on responsibility for the business.

Passenger cars in the 1920s

During the 1920s, a 1997 cc sports model was marketed and in some models sleeve valve engines were used.

By the time of the 19th Paris Motor Show, in October 1924, Unic were exhibiting three passenger cars. All had four cylinder engines, although large 4-cylinder engines such as that fitted in the 16HP model were by now seen as rather old fashioned:

  • Unic “Type L1T” 10 CV/HP: 4-cylinder 1843 cc: wheelbase 3,050 mm (120.1 in)
  • Unic “Type L3T” 11 CV/HP: 4-cylinder 2000 cc: wheelbase 3,050 mm (120.1 in)
  • Unic 16 CV/HP: 4-cylinder 3450 cc: wheelbase 3,450 mm (135.8 in)

Four years later, at the 22nd Paris Motor Show, only one of the two cars on show was fitted with a 4-cylinder engine. This was an evolution of the two litre model exhibited in 1924, now branded as the Unic “Type L9”, with a 3,150 mm (124.0 in) wheelbase and usually fitted with “Torpedo” or “Berline” (saloon/sedan) bodies. However, for the 1929 model year attention was now focused on the company’s first 8-cylinder model. The new Unic 14 CV/HP “Type H1” featured a 2½-litre straight-8 power unit and sat on a substantial 3,460 mm (136.2 in) wheelbase. It was priced at 55,000 francs in bare chassis form.

Passenger cars in the 1930s

The 8-cylinder Unic “Type H1” introduced in 1928 was progressively updated in accordance with the changing tastes of the time: by 1933 car had evolved into the Unic “Type H3” and the engine size had grown from 2½-litres to 2646cc. October 1933 was nevertheless the last time an 8-cylinder passenger car would appear on the Unic show stand.

For the next few years the company focused on 4-cylinder cars in the 11 CV/HP tax band, just as they had through the mid-1920s. For 1934 Unic announced their new “Type U4” model, featuring a 2-litre side-valve engine and now also employing a 4-speed transmission. The body-work of the standard 5-seater “berline” (sedan/saloon) was no longer completely flat-backed, but the proportions of the car may have drawn criticism, since between the car’s October 1933 launch and May 1934, the rear overhang was slightly increased, while at the front a slightly raked grill replaced the flat one, and the overall profile became a little more streamlined. In addition to this passenger car, Unic continued to produce through 1934 a similarly sized taxi of “great robustness”.

Final year of car production

In March 1937 Unic updated their four-cylinder passenger car model for the last time, and for the 1937 October Motor Show the six-cylinder model was also given a more streamlined look, in line with the fashion of the time. By this time the passenger car range was down to just these two models. The Unic Type U4D was a four-cylinder 2,150 (12CV) car which featured overhead valves and offered a maximum output of 55 hp (41 kW), supported by a robust rather traditional chassis with a 3,160 mm (124.4 in) wheelbase. The imposing six-cylinder Unic Type U6C provided 85 hp (63 kW) from a 3,000cc engine (17CV), transmitted via an electromagnetic “Cotal” preselector gear box, with a choice of wheelbase lengths between 3,200 mm (126.0 in) and 3,370 mm (132.7 in).

The appeal of Unic passenger cars by this time derived not from technical brilliance nor from stunning originality. Those who appreciated the cars were impressed by excellent reliability resulting from a meticulous approach taken during the production process. Also admired were their elegant spacious bodies, most of which came from the coach builder Letourneur et Marchand or from their subsidiary, Autobineau. Unic cars by now were not being sold in large numbers and this was reflected in the price. At the 1937 Motor Show the standard steel-bodied Unic Type U-4 D with its 12CV engine was priced at 53,750 francs (or 35,500 francs in bare chassis form). The slightly more powerful 13CV Talbot Type T4 “Minor” was listed at 42,500 Francs (or 35,000 Francs in bare chassis form), while from the top end of the Citroën range a long wheel base “familiale” version of the Traction 11CV Longue could be had for 28,900 francs including the body, while prototype testing was already well under way of a 2867cc (15/16CV) version of the aggressively priced and marketed Citroën Traction. Few customers in this class were willing to pay the price for the Unic’s virtues of dependability, style and space, and Unic passenger car production ceased in July 1938.

After 1938 Unic concentrated in the truck business, being one of the leading French makes. In 1966 it was taken over by the Italian company Fiat and eventually merged into Iveco in 1975.

1907 UNIC 1907 UNICa 1907 UNIC-bus-in-Norway-1908

1907 UNIC-bus-in-Norway

In 1952, the firm was taken over by Simca, headed by Henri Pigozzi, who wanted a commercial vehicle production unit. Trucks of this period are commonly referred to as Unic-Simca trucks.

In 1956 the French arm of the Swiss truck manufacturer Saurer was taken over.

In 1966 Unic joined the Fiat Group.

In 1975 a holding company named IVECO was established covering truck and bus brands such as Fiat, OM, Lancia, UNIC and Magirus.

In 1976 UNIC-FIAT S.A. became UNIC S.A.

In 1992 IVECO UNIC S.A. changed its name to IVECO FRANCE S.A.

In 2003, the company’s headquarters moved from Villejuif to Boissy St Léger, where a second facility was established in 1995.

1973 Unic-Fiat 616

1973 Unic-Fiat 616

1980 Unic 316 Toulon

1980 Unic 316 Toulon

unic-75-01 unic-75-02 unic-75-03 unic-75-04 unic-75-05 unic-75-06 unic-75-08 unic-75-09


unic-110-01 unic-110-03 unic-110-05 unic-110-06 unic-110-08

UNIC 110

unic-190-01 unic-190-02 unic-190-03 unic-190-04 unic-190-05

UNIC 190

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UNIC 190

unic-270-01 unic-270-03 unic-270-04 unic-270-05 unic-270-06 unic-270-08 unic-270-09

UNIC 270

unic-daily-01 unic-daily-02 unic-daily-03 unic-daily-05 unic-daily-06 unic-daily-08


unic-esterel-01 unic-esterel-02 unic-esterel-03 unic-esterel-04 unic-esterel-06 unic-esterel-07


unic-izoard-01 unic-izoard-02 unic-izoard-03 unic-izoard-05 684BBZ83 Unic Izoard.TR.R.Heid's.(Ex:Polioto S/Y) unic-izoard-07 unic-izoard-08 unic-izoard-09


Unic-Kegresse P107 halftrack Moscow. Unic-Kegresse_P107_halftrack_Moscow,_Poklonnaya_Hill_3 unic-u4-01 unic-u4-02 unic-u4-03 unic-u4-04 unic-u4-05 unic-u4-06


unic-u4-08 unic-vercors-01 unic-vercors-02 unic-vercors-03 unic-vercors-04 unic-vercors-05 unic-vercors-06 unic-vercors-07 unic-vercors-08 unic-zu-01 unic-zu-02


unic-zu-04 unic-zu-05 unic-zu-06 le GLM lui aussi connait la neige alsacienne unic-zu-09


1908 Unic 1909 Unic a 1909 Unic 1916 UNIC 1939 Unic S-20 1939 Unic TU-1 1946 UNIC ZU 72 a 1947 UNIC ZU 72 1950 UNIC 72 exceptionnel  d' un Transporteur de AUCH 32 1952 UNIC Z66 porteur 84 1952 UNIC ZU 72 1954 UNIC ZU 66 4 cyl 1954 UNIC ZU 100 1955 UNIC ZU 100 1956 UNIC à PUTEAUX. Première réalisation de l' alliance avec UNIC avec la cabine GENEVE et Ford 1956 1956 UNIC Verdon porteur 1956 UNIC ZU 100 Dépanneuse 1957 UNIC couchette avec sa semi porte chars 1957 UNIC IZOARD d' une restauration exceptionnelle environ 1957 Unic Izoard 1958 UNIC GALIBIER neuf 1958 UNIC Puymorens, 4 cyl couchette 1959 UNIC Izoard porteur primeur 1960 UNIC izoard grumiers, lors d' une halte sur une nationale 1961 UNIC Esterel de 19 tonnes roulant pour Calberson 1961 Unic Izoard EZ63 1961 UNIC ZU 91verdon, 6cyl, 150 cv 1962 TJ-45-77 UNIC 1962 UNIC estérel des Trps A. Chatel 1963 UNIC esterel moteur MZ 124 1963 UNIC Estérel MZ 124 en 26 tonnes, 6cyl, 200cv 1963 UNIC esterel MZ 125 T 160 cv 1963 Unic Verdon, toujours chez STEENVOORDE 1964 UNIC DONON 1965 UNIC Izoard V8 270 cv à été reproduit à l' identique couleur comprise par Dinky-toys 1966 UNIC Belfort pinardier conservé dans son jus dans la région de Perpignan 1966 UNIC Izoard 8 cyl en V de 270 ch des Transports Fournier de Pau 64 1966 Unic V8 avec cabine Geneve 1966 Unic Vercors, neuf, porteur remorqueur pinardier de l' Ardéche 1966-75 Unic Frankrijk 1967 UNIC 2764 en 6x4 1967 UNIC V8 270 cv 1968 UNIC T 270 IZOARD V8 1968 Unic Tanker 170 1970 UNIC 2764 V8 1971 UNIC 2764 V8, 270 cv 6x4 1972 UNIC des Transports ROBAYE de VEZIN Belgique 1974 UNIC V8 270 avec cette nouvelle cabine dérivé de chez Fiat 1975 UNIC T340 V8 Trucks UNIC ZU 72a Trucks UNIC ZU 100 en dernier plan, un Renault fainéant au milieu, et un Saurer-Unic 130cv pinardier Trucks UNIC ZU 100 équipé d' un cabine Pepel modéle de camions des années 50 Trucks Unic ZU 100d Trucks UNIC ZU 114 Trucks UNIC ZU 120 T de 1957 Trucks UNIC ZU 120 T IZOARD (1954) Trucks UNIC ZU 122 de 1959 19 tonnes Trucks Unic ZU Motobecane Trucks Unic ZU-47, 4x4, 1958 Trucks Unic Р-107BU, 1937 Trucks Unic Trucks Unic-Izoard-Sahara-1957 Unic (2) UNIC (3) UNIC 6P4 Unic 35 UNIC 75 C Unic 110-135ch Unic 165ch Unic 200ch UNIC 619 N UNIC 2744 UNIC 2766 Unic avec le moteur V8, vous remarquerez qu' il a encore conservé son ancienne cabine Unic Bonhomme... On aperçoit un Citroën U55 garé UNIC Brazilië UNIC de Marius et Combes UNIC Donon Plateau bâché Unic en Willeme Unic Estérel des Trps Fernand Morand au chargement UNIC était present aussi dans les TP comme cet UNIC 2744T UNIC Izoard 270 STSI UNIC IZOARD 270V8 UNIC Izoard couchette en porteur pinardier UNIC Izoard moteur V8 porteur 26 tonnes d' un Transporteur Breton UNIC Jonker France Unic met Alfa Romeo Politiewagens UNIC OM 40 UNIC OM 340 UNIC P 200 IZOARD UNIC P 200 IZOARDa UNIC P 220 UNIC Paris UNIC saverne des Trps Mélédo UNIC SMX UNIC Somport 4 cyl Unic Strip Unic Truck ad Unic V8 270ch UNIC V8 à 270 cv... UNIC Vercors 6 cyl de 165 cv citerne porteur. UNIC VERCORS UNIC ZU 55 Tekening UNIC ZU 94 VERDON

Author: Jeroen

In Dutch, my homelanguage: Ik ben Jeroen, tot januari 2015 was ik al dik 26 jaar werkzaam in een psychiatrisch ziekenhuis in een stad vlakbij Werelds grootste havenstad Rotterdam. Eerst als verpleegkundige/begeleider op high care, later op afdeling dubbeldiagnose (verslavingen) en ook nog een tijdje als administratief medewerker. Ik heb een spierziekte "Poli Myositis" (alle spieren zijn ontstoken) daardoor weinig energie. Sinds augustus 2015 is daarbij de diagnose Kanker gesteld, en ben ik helemaal arbeidsongeschikt geworden en zit middenin de behandelfase. Gelukkig ben ik daarnaast getrouwd, vader, en opa, en heb de nodige hobby's. Een daarvan is transportmiddelen verzamelen en daarmee een blog schrijven. Dit blog begon met bussen, maar nu komen ook sleepboten, auto's trucks en dergelijke aan bod. Kijk en geniet met me mee, reageer, en vul gerust aan. Fouten zal ik ook graag verbeteren. In English: I'm Jeroen, till januari 2015 I was already 26 years working as a nurse in a psychiatric hospital, near Rotterdam, Worlds biggest harbour with more than 98 nationalities living within it's borders. First I worked on closed high care ward and the last years on a ward with mainly addicted people. I liked my work very much. In 2007 I got ill. I got the diagnose Poli Myositis, a musscle dissease. Al my mussles are inflamed. And last august I got another diagnose. Cancer. It's plaveicelcel carcinoma and treated with Chemo and radioation. So I've even less energy than the last years. Still I try to make something of my life and the blog is helping with surviving with some pleasure.

One thought on “UNIC Cars and Trucks Puteaux France”

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