Table of Contents
1. Company Overview
2. Mayster Triumf
3. Mayster - Racing & Prototypes (-1990)
4. Mayster - Other Activities (-1990)
5. Mara-AMM models and racing activities (1990s and 2000s)
6. Mara-AMM models and racing activities (2010s)
From early on in life even before the war, Archanan marine engineer Andriy Mayster Sr. had a dream: to build and drive a lightweight roadster with excellent handling. While he had always had a clear idea how he would build the car, he faced two problems however: he lived in Archana and he had no money. The latter problem was solved in the late 1950s when he inherited a medium piece of land from his uncle on the shores of Lake Mara near Glensk.
Despite all odds, he managed to get a loan from the bank against the land and he started Mayster Avto Manufaktura in January 1960 together with a few of his engineer friends back from university. In a small shed, they set out to design the detailed blueprints for what would become the Mayster Triumf and built a large workshop (you could almost call it a tiny factory) next to it on the land, just large enough to assemble 2-3 cars at a time.
The shed (and workshop to the right) where everything began
Since Andrej had experience in building boat hulls out of fibreglass, the Mayster Triumf got a fibreglass body, built on an aluminium space frame. His friend Nataliya Karova was part of the team that had developed flat-4 and flat-6 engines for the first generation of post-war light Archanan aeroplanes, and thus she was the main driving force in developing the Triumf’s initial 1.6 litre flat-4 engine, based on the Continov A65 pre-war aircraft engine block. Engine manufacturing also was outsourced to Continov, thanks to Nataliya’s connections.
Nataliya also managed to secure a surplus of yellow paint that had originally been ordered for painting the Archanan aircraft roundels on planes, but turned out to be in the wrong shade of yellow. Hence, the customer could get their initial Triumfs in any colour, as long as it was yellow. Later, this colour had become Mayster’s signature colour, and so they stuck to it as the default colour throughout the Triumf’s production run.
1960s: Sales and Expansion
Main article: Mayster Triumf
The result of Mayster’s efforts was like no other car in Archana in 1961. While there was almost nil realistic interest in the car in their home country, the first prototype versions managed to garner some interest among the Dalluhan car scene - especially since they would essentially never need the softtop anyway. Also, as luck would have it, the Fruinian markets opened in January 1960 and Fruinian gentleman racers found the Triumf to be an attractive proposition as well. The opening of the Fruinian market was also essential to secure a steady supply of radial tyres.
After word of their creation had gotten around in the neighbouring countries, the 1960s saw a rapid expansion. Sales of the first two years were enough so that they could expand their workshop substantially while working on the first substantial Triumf facelift, reaching outputs almost worth of a small factory after the teething troubles were sorted out in 1964.
The expanded Mayster manufactory (on the right) in the early 1970s. The original shed had been torn down at some point.
For that first facelift, Mayster expanded the product line to include a lighter coupe, offered a larger engine and devoted considerable efforts to develop competition versions for racing leagues in their target markets - which in turn fueled sales. A slight decline in sales towards the end of the decade prompted Mayster to work on the second facelift.
1970s and 1980s
1970 saw the debut of the second facelift (the S2, sometimes also called the series 3) which carefully updated the Triumf coupe and roadster but kept the overall winning formula (figuratively and - at least for the 1960s - literally).
A Series 2 Triumf roadster
With the modified sports car racing classes being supplanted by pure prototype racers with larger engines, Triumfs got increasingly outclassed on the track with some racing series getting cancelled altogether. Mayster also moved into prototype racing, but they started on the back foot compared to more technologically advanced and financially backed racing outfits.
While the core market of a light 2-seater sports car remained somewhat stable early in the 1970s, Mayster also tried their hand in developing other variants, such as long-wheelbase 2+2 seaters or a shooting brake (called GT) - but still based on 1960s spaceframe & fibreglass technology.
Mayster also increasingly ran into issues (perceived and actual) of not meeting minimum safety standards in various countries. Another facelift later in the decade could also do so much to update the ageing platform for the new times.
The market had now shifted more to the purist faction, however, since the Triumf was increasingly lacking amenities compared to the competition.
During the 1980, Andriy’s interest in his car company waned. He had indeed managed to realise his dream and also sell it to others successfully for over two decades. Triumf sales effectively stopped mid-way during the 1980s.
Andriy’s children, Andriy Jr. and Anya had become car engineers in their own right, both working across the lake for Mara Motors. These connections led to Mayster being contracted to help develop convertible versions of the Mara Zorya as well as the venerable Mara Irena, based on Mayster’s experience in producing the Triumf’s softtop convertible version and keeping it available in the safety-conscious Fruinian market.
While neither convertible version was a sales success, this assignment nevertheless paved the way for the future of Mayster.
1990s: Acquisition by Mara
Main article: Mara Motors (V2.0 TBD)
Due to Andriy Jr. and Anya’s connections, Mayster became Mara’s factory performance division in 1990. Mara saw this as one piece of the puzzle to regain international competitiveness after the impending global market liberalisation.
Andriy Jr. and Anya took over the reins of the company in 1990, now renamed to Avtostudiya & Manufaktura Mayster (AMM). Despite all these changes, AMM retained the particular shade of yellow that they had offered since the first Triumf models as their signature colour.
As a last hurrah, a final run of - mostly unchanged - Triumfs was produced in 1990 for the purists in those international markets that have not been able to buy Archanan cars before.
The initial expansion shortly after the takeover by Mara
After the transition, Andriy Sr. could enjoy his retirement, still driving and carefully maintaining one of the very first cars that bore his name, the 1962 Mayster Triumf #0024 - a fitting name for the triumph of his life’s work.
Main article: Mara-AMM models and racing activities 1990s
Since the 1990s, AMM has offered performance-oriented variants of Mara’s base models - first starting with crudely tuned engines (the V8s being their favourite) and additional bodywork, but slowly moving towards more sophisticated approaches. They have become renowned for achieving remarkable levels of suspension tuning for performance as well as for comfort while eschewing electronic aids beyond the mandated minimums of first TC and later ESC.
Since the takeover, AMM has further expanded its facilities
AMM is also in charge of supplying racing variants of Mara models to independent racing and rally teams and running a few selected works entries over the years.
In the 2020s, AMM became a prominent sponsor of a fledgling Archanan cycling team (Mayster Velosport), due to Anya’s oldest grandson deciding not to follow in the family tradition, but to seek a professional cycling career instead.