14.10.2019 MEDIA ABOUT US

The further to the north-east of Russia, the fewer inhabited settlements are found. Between them stretch thousands of kilometers of snowy desert. For most of the year, some of them are inaccessible to ground transport. You can reach them only by helicopter, and only in favorable weather that happens rarely. Burlak covered a huge distance of 6000 km from Novy Urengoy to Anadyr in 29 days. Local drivers went speechless when they heard that in front of them were production vehicles without extra specialized preparation.


The first Burlak was built in early 2016. In March, it was tested in the Near-Polar Urals and the Arctic Ocean. The vehicle passed 2800 km from Ivdel and back in 16 days: it climbed Mount Narodnaya, the highest point of the Ural Range, overcame snow virgin lands and ice ridges, floated on the open water of Baidarata Bay, having endured all the challenges without serious breakdowns.

Burlak is indeed different from all the vehicles that run through the Arctic. It needs no roads at all. The wheels that are higher than an average human easily overcome difficult obstacles and, like floats, keep a loaded vehicle on the water. The automatic propeller system assists the vehicle with flotation. The low-pressure tires are pumped up by the engine turbine. Originally, the engine was the Toyota 1KZ-TE turbodiesel with a capacity of 145 hp and an automatic gearbox. To increase the off-road performance of the all-terrain vehicle, the axles are blocked by an inter-wheel differential using a pneumatic mechanism. All of the most important units and assemblies are located in the waterproof hull on the bottom of the vehicle, the driver-mechanic can freely access them from the cabin. The spacious interior has berths, a galley and a compartment for personal belongings and cargo.

The practical interest in Burlak became apparent to its creators while still in the testing stages. On the way back along a winter road near Vorkuta, the vehicle came across some Latvian auto travelers who liked the all-terrain vehicle so much that they soon purchased it for their own expeditions. And later, at the international auto industry exhibition “Auto 2019” in Riga, the first Burlak became the main exhibit. Even now, it is ready for extreme travel.

Alexei Makarov, designer,

“There was a need for an all-terrain vehicle suitable for year-round work in the Far North, capable of transporting a group of up to 15 people and all the necessary supplies autonomously over long distances and on any surface. That’s why the idea to create a large expedition vehicle came about. The main Burlak killer feature is its powerful final reduction gears, which unloaded the transmission 4 times. They are the same as on BTR (Armoured Personnel Carrier), only manufactured by us, because the original ones are too heavy. Such a vehicle should be simple and reliable, like a Kalashnikov rifle. Anything may happen in the Arctic. Burlak can be easily repaired far from inhabited localities and without specialized technical knowledge. The unique spare parts and assemblies are included in the basic configuration, and all the rest can be obtained in any city. Even in the far reaches of the North. In an emergency, the all-terrain vehicle will not only keep crew members alive but also allow you to wait for help in the most comfortable conditions. The vehicle has everything you need. You just get in and hit the road.”

Platform 2.0

The second version of Burlak was redesigned by Alexei Makarov, taking into account past tests. The main changes were related to weight reduction and weight distribution of the vehicle. The first condition is necessary for more confident movement on the flexible and loose salt ocean ice. Lightweight materials were used for this solution.

The second change was to improve grip when the vehicle gets out of the water. This was achieved by transferring the engine from the rear part to the front of the all-terrain vehicle and redesigning the transmission.

As a result, Burlak became half a ton lighter, more economical and more powerful.

Burlak is equipped with the Cummins 2.8 ISF engine, which is paired with a reinforced manual transmission from GAZ. The suspension is its own, but it is assembled from standard parts. This is an independent double wishbone spring suspension: the ball joint responds to the torsion moment, and the bearing mount assembly, acting as the silent blocks, ensures operational reliability. As a result, we have got a smooth ride and quiet operation.

The transfer case is modified, three-shaft, using components of two GAZ-66 transfer cases (1/2 reduction). The case is original. Cross-wheel gearboxes with electric locks are taken from GAZ (4.2 lowering) and are mounted on four silent blocks. Their cases are also original. Cardan shafts are manufactured at the plant in Arzamas on an individual order, using GAZ-66 and GAZ components.

Burlaks move on their own multi-layer low-pressure tires of in-house design. With a decrease in pressure, the tires do not only become flat, but also break into a so-called “pigtail”, operating as a track. This helps the snow and swamp-going vehicle not to bury itself, to move forward on loose snow and weak soils. The total displacement of the wheels is 7.2 tons, and when installing additional floats in the wheel rims, it increases to 8.8 tons. The weight of each wheel is about 120 kg. But it can be removed and put by one person. This is done with the help of simple devices that are provided in the kit. Double-circuit brakes from VAZ-2112 are located inside the hull on the middle and rear axles.

Who needs Burlaks?

The first orders for Burlaks came from Chukotka. Construction workers needed an expedition vehicle to transport the crews. A trade and industrial business company asked for cargo trucks. They had begun to carry more goods at a lower cost, the economic situation of the enterprise had improved, but that was not their only goal. In those lands, good drivers are worth their weight in gold, but they refused to work in inhumane conditions in tracked all-terrain vehicles. Nowadays, they go on the road in Burlaks wearing white shirts and take along their wives who cook home-cooked meals for them in the vehicles’ galleys.

The Expedition, Cargo-passenger and Industrial modifications are now assembled with a 6x6 wheel arrangement. They differ in design by compartments in which, depending on the order, there can be passenger seats and berths, an all-metal, tented or open space for cargo or industrial equipment, for example, for a drilling rig, compressor, generator or other equipment.

The flagship expedition Burlak accommodates up to 15 seats, some of which transform into eight berths. The cargo-passenger modification of Burlak is designed for six passenger seats that can be transformed for overnight and rest into four berths.

In the spring of 2019, Burlak with a 4x4 wheel arrangement was created. It became a ton lighter, and a meter shorter than the six-wheeled model. Because of this, the vehicle now maneuvers perfectly in taiga and forest-tundra. The new model is designed to transport small groups of people and up to a ton of cargo. It is suitable not only for business needs of organizations but also for forestry and hunting entities, search and rescue services, recreational outdoor activities.

Where are Burlaks created?

Burlaks are mass-produced in Yekaterinburg, at the ‘MakarOffroad’ factory. For this purpose, a workshop was built with a production capacity of up to 25 vehicles per year. The staff includes 35 employees, many of whom are experienced in extreme travel.

After the assembly is completed, the all-terrain vehicle is rolled out into the courtyard, where on a flat concrete surface it undergoes a mandatory preliminary run-in. Before the installation of the wheel rims on the vehicle fixed motionless, the engine and all of the transmission mechanisms go through at least a 5-hour run. By doing this, the transmission oil seals are checked for leaks, the bedding-in of the bearings, components and mechanisms at low engine speeds without load takes place, and backlashes are eliminated. Only after that, Burlaks are shod and tested in the field. The warranty for Burlaks extends to 525 machine-hours, which, according to the manufacturer, is greater than that of any other Russian all-terrain vehicle.

Learn more on the website Za Rulem