Klippan karosserifabrik

In 1926 the company Klippan karosserifabrik was started by Sven Danielsson in the town of Klippan a few swedish miles northeast of Helsingborg. At the beginning, existing FORD-models were cut up behind the front seats, a backwall was mounted and then a platform was placed in space behind. Later on, naked chassis were bought to build the desired cabins on. The buisness grow and during the 50;s and 60;s the company had 91 persons employed. Cabins were produced for bigger trucks and for the smaller 445 chassis. The coachwork were spread all over the country, all the way upp to Haparanda in the most northern part of Sweden. The main market though was in the neighbourhood in the counties of Småland and Skåne. The 445 chassis made a large part of the production on which the company built pickups, delivery vans, ambulances and hearses. However, there were never any estate wagons produced.

At the start of the 445 chassis production from Volvo, Klippan could fetch the chassis at the local railway station. Later on they had to get them themselves from Gothenburg. Some tough guys than took the train to Gothenburg, got the required chassis and drove them all the way back sitting on a wooden box. Some of the drivers had a small windshield mounted to protect them from the cold wind. These journeys were made in all seasons. When it got to cold, the warmth was found in a bottle of whisky. Rune Hemborg remembers that through all the years there were no one crashing a car, even though some drivers were not sober. Rune is the son of one the early employees and worked in the company as salesman. As a kid, he ran around among the machinery in the factory building and became very familiar with the production. He tells that when the company was sold in 1976 and renamed Klippan Flak, there were some cabins left for the 445 chassis never mounted. They were put in a barn and later in the 80;s bought by a collector. One cabin, made for a bigger truck, was put on a museum when the buisness again was sold in 1991, this time to BRIAB. Rune also mentions that the Klippan company never put a sign in the cabin telling who built it. So if ever wondering if you own a Klippan, you have to look at the design comparing it with known Klippan coachwork. A search for pictures from the production line is started to get the right design confirmed.

Thanks to Rune Hemborg for sharing information about the company. Thanks also to Lars Eliasson who started the research about the company and got hold of the accurate people to tell the story.

Published 2005-03-31