Automotive engineering

Company history

Close to the customer for more than ninety years: a success story

On 11.11.1931, master locksmith Alois Kober took over a small locksmith's shop in Kötz. That was the birth of the AL-KO Vehicle Technology Group. A lot has happened since then: What began as a small village forge has now become the epitome of high-quality chassis and suspension components for trailers, recreational and commercial vehicles.

The founding period: From Germany to the world

The history of the AL-KO Vehicle Technology Group began with the acquisition of the locksmith's shop in Kötz. Thanks to the ingenuity of Alois Kober, the village smithy managed to keep going during the war years and developed into a small industrial enterprise in the 1950s. Son Herbert had the idea of combining loose hand brake levers and less sprockets, thus saving a lot of installation time. This idea met with enthusiasm and so the first orders were landed. The success of the handbrake levers was followed by the overrun brake, with which AL-KO was the first supplier in Germany with a tested and certified brake of this type. In accordance with the motto "Quality for Life", numerous products and solutions were developed in the following decades, which led to a steady growth of the family business. The first foreign subsidiary was founded in Austria in 1961, further subsidiaries in England, France, Italy and Switzerland followed in 1970. In the mid-1980s, transatlantic branches started in the USA (1983) and Australia (1986).

Safety and comfort: Entry into the caravan business

In the 70s, the company entered the caravan business. With the Rückmatic , an overrun brake was developed that made it possible to drive backwards - without awkward getting out and blocking. The company achieved a major breakthrough in 1985 with an innovative chassis for the Fiat Ducato. The chassis, the ancestor of today's AMC chassis, offers more space in the vehicle as well as a more stable position while driving. In the 90s, there are already many products in the range that are important today. These include safety cable winches, support wheels or the probably best known AKS 3004. The stabilising hitch enables safe and relaxed transport and travel and reduces lurching and pitching movements of the hitch. Since the 2000s, AL-KO has made caravanning safer with an electronic stabilisation system, ATC Trailer Control. The built-in sensor nips any incipient sway in the bud by sending a minimal braking impulse to the caravan. Even dangerous evasive manoeuvres can be mastered safely with the help of ATC.

Central turning point: The beginning of DexKo

A key turning point in the company's history was the year 2016. The automotive division was spun off from the family business and merged with Dexter Axle. AL-KO Fahrzeugtechnik has since become an independent brand under the umbrella of the DexKo Global group, focusing increasingly on innovations for the leisure and commercial vehicle industry.