The DAF company is one of Europe’s principal manufacturers of trucks, and in 2007 reached a landmark in its history when the 750,000 truck made in Eindhoven was completed. The company’s founders were the brothers Hub (1900-79) and Wim (1906-78) van Doorne. The former was responsible for the technical development of vehicles and the latter for the company’s business affairs. Hub van Doorne had a background in mechanical engineering and in 1928 leased a workshop at 27 Tongelresestraat next to the Valk (falcon) brewery where he had once worked. The original workshop, essentially a blacksmith’s forge, has been re-created in the museum where the Valk Tavern provides refreshments for visitors.
In 1932 the company was renamed van Doorne Aanhangwagen Fabriek (trailer factory) creating the acronym DAF which became its brand name. It went on the manufacture a huge variety of vehicles, embarking in 1958 on the production of passenger cars with Variomatic, or continuously variable transmission.
Most of the principal company products are displayed in the museum, including motor cars, coaches and buses, all-terrain military vehicles, and specialist trucks such as fire engines and those used for collecting household refuse or delivering ready-mixed cement. Above all the collection features heavy trucks of the kind used for delivering goods all over Europe. Impressions of the sheer numbers of trucks made by the firm and the variety of uses to which they have been put are conveyed by sophisticated displays of models. The museum includes a well-resourced educational facility called Truckarium.