AB J.V. Svensons Motorfabrik / AB Avancemotor, Augustendal, Sweden


Russian-language advertisement for Avance oil engines and other products (click on image to enlarge)
J.V. Svensons Automobilfabrik was founded in 1901 at Augustendal (Nacka) near Stockholm by Johan Victor Svenson, who had already established a reputation for building a highly-successful design of paraffin stove. The new factory was intended for automobile production, although this never materialised, and the company focused instead on building two-stroke crude oil (hotbulb) engines based on the Mietz & Weiss system and carrying the "Avance" name. These engines won numerous prizes and were adapted to marine as well as stationary use. As a result of all this the companychanged its name to AB J.V. Svensons Motorfabrik in 1907. J.V. Svenson soon became the largest private employer in Sweden and the leading producer of stationary engines in Scandinavia. Russia was the main export market, and Avance engines were used to power the some of that country's first tractors.

J.V. Svenson subsequently turned their own attention to tractors, and the first Avance motor plough appeared around 1912. It proved a great success and was produced in various forms until the mid 1920s - one even took part in the 1921 Shrewsbury tractor trials in England. Meanwhile, political uphevals in Russia and the resulting loss of that important export market were having a serious effect on the company's finances, which culminated in AB J.V. Svensons Motorfabrik being declared bankrupt in 1922. After reorganization, however, they emerged once more as AB Avancemotor, and turned their attention to more conventional tractors. The first Avance tractor emerged in 1924, a bonneted design with two-cylinder hotbulb engine, and a modified version followed in 1928. Many Avance tractors were exported as far afield as Australia and South America. In 1929 the company merged with Munktells Mekaniska Verkstads AB, although the Avance tractor continued to be built until 1932. The J.V. Svenson factory finally closed in 1937 when production was shifted to Eskilstuna.

Model Details

Avance motor plough     (1912-1922?)
Avance motor plough (click on image to enlarge)
The Avance motor plough was powered by a centrally-mounted, single-cylinder vertical hotbulb engine, cooled by what appears to be a cylindrical radiator and fan mounted in front. At the rear was a fixed plough frame with three hinged bodies that could be raised or lowered using a cable. Two speeds forward and reverse were provided.

Avance tractor     (1924-1932)
The Avance tractor, which appeared in 1924, was initially powered by a 30 hp two-cylinder vertical hotbulb engine running at 625 rpm, with the cylinders cast in a single block. This was later replaced with a 35 hp power unit but still operating at the same speed. An electrical heating system was provided for pre-heating the hotbulbs before starting, but this could also be done using a blowlamp. An initial batch of 20 tractors was sent to Australia in 1927, where they were sold by A.H. Mc Donald & Co., but almost all of these had problems with broken crankshafts. Avance responded by producing a housing containing an extra bearing that could be fitted between the engine and gearbox. This seemed to solve the problem, and the feature was included as stanfard in the redesigned tractor that appeared in 1928. It is interesting to note that for the Argentinian market, the tractors had "El Sueco" (The Swede) cast into the radiator rather than "Avance", due to the latter name being already in use in that country.

Photo Gallery (Click on images to enlarge)

Avance 30 hp (serial no. 10635) at the Wheatlands Musuem, Warracknabeal, Victoria, Australia in 2007.

Avance 35 hp (serial no. 10877) at the Pioneer Settlement Museum, Swan Hill, Victoria, Australia in 2007.


Thanks to Tore Blom of Rubens Maskinhistoriska Samlingar for his help with compiling this page.


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