Veritas was a West German post World War II sports and race car company, located in the village of Hausen am Andelsbach, near Sigmaringen, Baden-Württemberg, later at Meßkirch and Muggensturm and moved finally to the Nürburgring.
The company was founded by Ernst Loof, Georg Meier and Lorenz Dietrich who initially re-built and tuned pre-war BMW 328 cars using components supplied by a customer, turning them into BMW-Veritas cars. The first car was used in 1947 by its owner Karl Kling to win at Hockenheim and subsequently become the 1947 German 2-litre champion. After only a few cars were made, following an objection from BMW, the cars became simply known as Veritas.
The first Veritas to be made for normal road use was made in 1949 with the launch of the Komet coupé which was little more than a racing Veritas RS made street legal. It was followed by the more civilised 2+2 Saturn coupé and Scorpion cabriolet, both being styled by Ben Bowden.
The company moved to larger premises in Muggensturm in 1949 but were badly under capitalised. New cars were designed using a 1998 cc engine designed Eric Zipprich and built by Heinkel. Over 200 orders were received for the new car but there was not enough money available to buy the components and production came to a halt in 1950 and the company continued in operation until 1952 by making new bodies for Panhard cars.
Ernst Loof moved to the Nürburgring in 1950 where he rented the old Auto Union workshops and set up a new company Automobilwerke Ernst Loof GmbH and started a new range of Veritas cars at first with the Heinkel manufactured engine and saloon or cabriolet coachwork by Spohn. Money quickly ran out however and the final bodies were fitted with Ford or Opel engines. The number of cars made at the Nürburgring is estimated as between 6 and 20.
A first prototype of an open-road two-seater sports car was developed during 1947 using the chassis and engine of a used BMW 328. The model name was accordingly BMW Veritas . The vehicle had an unusual for that time pontoon-shaped streamlined body made of aluminum, as they had the last built before the war competition models from BMW . Coachbuilders at Veritas was Kurt Frick from Meßkirch.
With this car and another car built by Karl Kling according to original plans, the first smaller competitions were held during the year. In addition, the first orders were already received, whereby the business model of Veritas in the time of the black market in Germany provided that the customer had to provide a cash deposit in addition to a used sports car chassis as a platform and other means of production. According to the division of the sports car classes in competitions engine variants with 2 liters and 1.5 liters displacement were available.
In the spring of 1948, the company was relocated to a slightly larger area in Meßkirch , Baden . These were working camps (so-called Zugsbaracken) of the former Reich Labor Service (RAD) on today's Bizerba area. At the same time Jean-Baptiste Lefêbvre, a French officer, via the Dietrichs connections with the occupation authorities and ran to France, a shareholder of the founded on 1 March 1948 Veritas GmbH . At the same time Georg Meier resigned from the circle of shareholders.
Her first big and publicly announced appearance was at the Hockenheimring race on May 9, 1948, which ended with Kling winning in the sports car class up to 2 liters and Meier in the formula-free racing car category. Further successes followed in the course of the season, so that a short time later BMW banned the use of the name BMW-Veritas because of the broad attention it attracted . The cars were henceforth built under the model name Veritas RS (RS for "racing").
Veritas quickly became the dominant brand in all German racing events of the early postwar period. Although the construction actually two-seater sports car, the RS could be used because of the very relaxed rules in the newly created Formula 2 and proved here even against purebred Monopostos as competitive. Therefore, it came quickly to further orders, with a large part of the built between 30 and 40 RSsold to foreign customers. The main buyers were racers from Switzerland, Belgium and France, but cars also went to Italy, the Netherlands, Scandinavia and the USA. In this way, Veritas racing cars were represented on all racetracks in Europe and beyond during the 1950s.
In order to appeal to wealthy customers who were not interested in racing missions, the model RS derived a somewhat throttled in performance, suitable for everyday use coupe . The provided with bodies of the company Spohn and offered under the name Comet model was in his time the most expensive German production car. However, only about eight pieces were made.
Despite the numerous successes, the RS were very controversial because of their sweeping streamline body and the associated unwieldiness on winding roads in the German press, which quickly gave this vehicle the nickname Aerosaurier . Simultaneously, Veritas therefore began developing the first prototypes for a small series of monoposto racing cars for the very popular in those years Formula 2. Over time, however, the procurement of used BMW engines became more difficult and so it came in the course of currency reform to the Decision to start developing your own engines.
Financed by the Swiss Hermann Trümpy, a development office was set up in Caslano in Ticino . There, under the direction of the former BMW engine designer Ernst Zipprich under the name Meteor an in-house OHC- cylinder engine made of light metal was developed. Thus, from about autumn 1949, both the Veritas racing cars and - in a slightly throttled version - luxurious sports and touring cars for public roads were equipped. In the absence of sufficient own production capacity, the series production of these drive units ran at Heinkel in Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen , while the bodies of Hebmüllerand Spohn were made. The road vehicles ran under the model name Scorpion (two-seater convertible ) and Saturn (two-seater coupe, together also built about eight pieces), while the racing sports cars were called the Comet S and the approximately ten produced Formula 2 racing cars as a meteor .
A new Swiss racing team, the Ecurie Suisse , was founded especially for the use of these racing cars . A total of four Veritas Meteor were ordered and pre-financed for the drivers Peter Hirt , Paul Glauser, "JM Marcy" and Max de Terra , which were used in the 1950 season. Other cars were built for racers like Karl Kling and the two prewar aces Hermann Lang and Paul Pietsch and orders were also received from Belgium.
The production of these models, however, again required larger production capacity, so that in March 1950, a new move was necessary, this time on the grounds of the Upper Rhine Automobile GmbH Freiburg (ORAG) in Muggensturm Following the departure of Werner Miethe, the production management was now headed by the former Technical Director of BMW, Dipl.-Ing. Dorls taken over.
Nevertheless, at this time it was clear that the company could not exist in the long term by selling these extremely expensive models for the time. Director Lorenz Dietrich therefore concluded an agreement with the French car manufacturer Panhard on the supply of engines and components of the successful front-wheel-drive small car model Dyna , which should be offered with compliant convertible bodies of the Stuttgart company Baur from 1950 under the name Dyna-Veritas . In addition, the first prototypes of a sedan (body of Baur) and of roadster versions (bodies of Baur and Drews) were developed on this platform .
However, the multitude of activities overwhelmed Veritas' capacities, and as of the beginning of 1950, the company became more and more in trouble. Due to bottlenecks in both finances and resources, there were significant delays in the delivery of the ordered and largely paid vehicles. This had a particularly serious effect on the new racing car models, whose development could no longer be carried out with the necessary care. So fell in the race for the Grand Prix of Germany in 1950 all seven started meteorRacing cars early with technical defects, a devastating defeat that had a significant damage to the image result. And while the Veritas brand had been extremely successful in domestic races until 1949, the readmission of Germany to international motor racing soon made it clear that the German designs were no match for the foreign race car models - especially Ferrari and Gordini .
Thus, in spite of some requests for state support for the most important German racing car manufacturer, it finally came to bankruptcy in the fall of 1950 and as a result also to the separation of the partners involved.
Lorenz Dietrich continued to follow the plans for the production and distribution of the Dyna-Veritas and founded for this purpose together with Lefêbvre the Dyna Import and Export GmbH . This company with headquarters in Baden-Badenand branches in Essen and Munich as well as an offshoot in Paris , should also take over the distribution of the original Dyna-Panhard in Germany. However, the models did not withstand the price comparison, especially with the Volkswagen , and so the numbers remained low. Overall, until the end of production in 1953, only 176 Dyna Veritas a significant proportion of which went to France, Belgium, Switzerland and Scandinavia.
Automotive manufacturer Aachen; Germany From 1947 to 1953.
And from 1999 on