1955 Tangalakis advertisement, exhibiting one of the "classic" Tangalakis bus models
TEMAX is today the leading Greek manufacturer of fire-fighting vehicles, while under its previous name, Tangalakis, it has been one of the most historic bus manufacturers in that country.
There has been more than 100 bus manufacturers in Greece (the vast majority being body manufacturers) but Tangalakis is particularly remembered to this date for many reasons, including the quality of its products. Company activity effectively started in 1925, when Petros Tangalakis joined as a partner G. Tournikiotis, a vehicle body manufacturer based in Athens, founded in 1922. The new joint company saw significant growth becoming the largest in its field, producing a variety of vehicles on imported chassis. In 1934 Tangalakis split off creating his own company, which remained the leading Greek vehicle producer for nearly three decades. During the Axis occupation of Greece in WWII the factory was put under German control, but vehicle production was resumed in 1945. The following years were Tangalakis's "Golden Era"; the company focused on all-metal bus construction on chassis by Daimler, Volvo and other manufacturers, producing several designs remembered to this date (in some of which it introduced extensive chassis modification to accomodate higher loads and/or different vehicle dimensions). It also imported and assembled Wayne models. In 1963, facing strong competition from other bus manufacturing companies in Greece, it ventured into fire-fighting vehicle manufacture mainly on International Harvester chassis (chassis assembled by Tangalakis from SKD kits). In 1965 it created TEMAX, a new company entirely focused on fire-fighting and other specialty vehicle production, which operates successfully to date. Another branch of the same family, though, has continued business under the Tangalakis name, as importers and distributors of fire-fighting and rescue equipment, vehicle parts etc.
1924 Tournikiotis city bus (Ford chassis). In 1925 the company became Tournikiotis-Tangalakis producing this and other models.
1937 Tangalakis automobile (DKW chassis)
1953 Tangalakis bus (Daimler chassis)
Temax TLF-1500 rescue vehicle on Mercedes-Benz Atego truck chassis (2000)
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