Wihuri Oy

The manufacturing of car bodies began when Antti Wihuri bought the share-capital of Teijon Tehtaat Oy from AGA in 1957. The factory was located in Pernå, Finland and in the deal some old facilities in the towns of Teijo and Mathildedal were included. The factory in Teijo was old and in bad condition. The production also was ineffective. They manufactured buttons and agriculture machines. The foundry in Mathildedal had earlier been destroyed in a fire.

wihurioy(1).jpg Wihuri Oy imported Volkswagen cars to Finland at the time and the company wanted to increase the buisness with the manufacturing of bodies with own design. They had earlier built cabins for Volvo trucks, so the experience was avalible. It was not long before the new ideas were put in buisness and the profitability raised. Managing director Ilmari Mustonen was one of the initiators. He had earlier become famous for the work with car bodies. The manufacturing of busses with parts from Volvo began at the same time and the number of produced vehicles now were near a hundred.

In -59 the company began the production of lorry trailers in Teijo. They also started to manufacture lorries by the name Wilke.

wihurioy(7).jpg At the time foreign exchange and the import of cars were strictly regulated. As a cause of this the company started the production of a finnish car. The managemant in Wihuri Oy decided to produce pickups and estate wagons built on the PV 445 chassis. Volvo delivered 25 Volvo PV 445 chassis from Gothenburg to Helsinki in the autumn of 1959. They then were equipped with the estate wagon bodywork at the Teijo factory. The bodywork was designed and constructed by engineer Oiva Jyrä. The design was a mix of a Volvo PV and a SAAB 95 with a lower roof than the Volvo made duett. Oiva Jyrä also was responsible for the body construction line.

The bodies were not that reliable due to the rivet assembling method and not many are left to this date. According to some sources between 20 and 200 estate wagons were produced in Teijo. It all depends on who you are interviewing. According to the arcives at Volvo only 25 chassis were produced for the company Wihuri Oy. All of the 25 chassis were shipped to Helsinki in the autumn of -59. Information about chassis manufactured before and after -59 at Wihuri Oy can not be confirmed of anyone that has been working in the company. Nor can Volvo confirme that there's been any chassis delivered before and after the shippment in -59.

A big thanks to Jukka Koskeli who has done a great research about Wihuri Oy. Text and pictures connected to Wihuri Oy are taken from the Jukka Koskeli article in the members magazine of the Swedish Volvo PV Club, PV-Entusiasten nr.1 2003 .

Published 2003-05-01