The BA-22 was a Soviet armoured ambulance developed in the late 1930s by GAZ, armored by Izhorskiy on a BA-10 armoured car chassis. It started development in 1939, as an armoured evacuation vehicle, the first such dedicated vehicle in the Soviet Army. However tested and rejected by the ABTU RKKA for service, the single prototype only built was kept for testings until the end of the war. It could have become also the first Soviet APC.
GAZ AAA (1934)
The GAZ AAA was a 6x4 derivative of the "polutorkha", the famous GAZ AA derived from the Ford AA in 1929. Only produced to 37,000 vehicles, it was however declined into more specialized vehicles and production went on until 1943. It also gave birth to the SU-12 SPG, BA-6, BA-10 armored cars and BA-20 APC among others.
Marder IFV (1969)
The Marder IFV started development as soon as the Schützenpanzer HS.30 was undergoing tests. It was seen as a heavier IFV designed to accompany Leopard Tanks on the battlefield and during its long development started to evolve as an answer to the Soviet BMP-1/2. The Schützenpanzer Marder was infinitely superior to the 1950s SpZ. "Kurz" and "Lang" which it replaced and was upgraded in the 1980s, 1990s and 2000s up to the Marder 1A6, and still 300 in the inventory today alongside the new Puma IFV.
Bedford MK/MJ (1967)
The Bedford TK launched in 1960 was to replace the Bedford S type, a military version was developed later to replace the Bedford RL. The TK was to be replaced by the Bedford TL in 1981, but production went on as it was cheap. The military 1967 4x4 Bedford MK (later MJ) soon became a staple of the army (and others). When the Dunstable factory was sold in 1987, production was restarted for the military until 1992. The British Mk saw action in the Falklands war and Gulf War in 1991, among others..
Dragoon 300 (1982)
The Dragoon 300 was designed by Verne Corp. to meet a requirement of the US Military Police at the end of the Vietnam war, which wanted an air-transportable equivalent to the Cadillac Gage Commando. The requirement was cancelled but Verne teamed with Arrowpointe Corp. to market it internationally, and outside the US Navy and some police agencies to protect sensible areas, the vehicle was also exported to six other countries, and declined into a dozen variants, with circa 400 being built by AV Technology Corp. until the introduction of the Dragoon 2 and its production by GDLS in Spain (Santa Barbara).
Praga V3S (1952)
The Praga V3S was the main cold war medium Czechoslovakian truck, planned to be the replacement for several models, ranging from captured ones to Soviet and US trucks. It was thought to make a fusion of these and find the best mass production setup. Altough a bit underpowered, the Praga V3S was produced for the entire duration of the cold war. Many still runs today in various civilian roles, mostly from Czech army stocks. This post is a complement to the M53/59 SPAAG based on its chassis, and covers also the Vz 51 rocket launcher.
Praga M53/59 SPAAG (1959)
The Praga M53/59 was for decades the main SPAAG of the Czechoslovakian Army. Developed from the sturdy Praga V3S 6x6 truck, it was studied to carry a twin 30 mm AA gun and was a reliable, albeit slow vehicle, seeing active service for most of the cold war, taking part in many conflicts like the 1967-73 middle eastern, Libyan, Iran-Iraq, and Yugoslavian wars among others, and still in active service in four countries today.
Diamond T (1940)
The Diamond T was a well known truck model of the company produced under that name since pre-WWI. Based on the 1935 model, a wartime 6x6 truck called Model 969 became the new standard US Cargo truck of the US Army. It was declined into the T 970, T 968 Wrecker, 972 Dump Truck and the Canadian T 975. Another 6x4 became the M20, tractor part of the standard allied truck transporter M19 during WW2. The 6x6 was produced to an extent of 30,000 vehicles until 1945.
Wanshan WS 2500/DF 17 TEL (2000)
The Wanshan WS 2500 was a Chinese PLA 20-ton 10x8/10x10 heavy truck and TEL, principal mobility platform and medium-range ballistic missiles and other conventional missile. Usable as a general purpose heavy duty truck derived from the 8x8 WS2400 built by Wanshan Special Vehicle it is also declined into the WS2600 to carry the DF 16 missile, and the smaller 6x6 WS 2300 used a mobile command center. But the medias are more accustomed to the WS 2500 as it was specially tailored to carry the Chinese hypersonic DF 17.
T12/M3 GMC (1941)
The T12, later standardized in late 1941 and produced from February 1942, until April 1943 as the M3 Gun Motor Carriage was a self-propelled gun based on the M3 White Half Track Car. More than 2,200 were delivered by the Autocar Company, soldiering in the Philippines in January 1942, North Africa, Sicilia and Italy until replacement by the M10 Wolverine. About 1300 were reverted back as regular M3A1 half-tracks, the remainder, not lost in action, still served in many amphibious operations of the Pacific, such as Saipan, Peleliu, Tarawa, and Okinawa.
5P85 TEL (S-300, SA-10 Grumble) (1978)
The 5P85 missile system is the mobile truck variant of the S-300 missile system family, declined into multiple variants, the 5P85-1, 5P85D and S, DU and TE1 among others. The first was based on the MAZ-543 and the next on the modernized MAZ-7910 TEL 8x8 truck. With more than 3,000 missiles systems built, most being of the TEL variant, it was also widely used from the 1980s and exported to 19 operators, most still in their inventory, including 350 in Russia alone.
The story of the M114 is one of a failed opportunity. It was manufactured by Cadillac (General Motors) in the early 1960s, even before the Vietnam war as a fast and stealthy reconnaissance armored all-tracked vehicle that can perform also communication and control on the battlefield. It was indeed smaller and nimbler than the M113, technically faster, and still amphibious and air-droppable. But from paper to reality, the concept quickly proved unsuited for the Vietnam War and was replaced by the M551 Sheridan. It was retired gradually in 1979, considered a failure and ending as surplus used by police departments.
Kfz.15 Horch 901 (1934)
The KFz. 15 was an off-road staff and utility car of the Wehrmacht produced from 1936 to 1944 by various manufacturers insde Auto-Union (better known as the Horch 901). Simplfied in 1940 as the typ 40, its production was discontinued from 1943. It was very popular, roomy and powerful, but costly compared to the VW Wolksvagen. The 20,000 delivered served on all fronts ablend it was organic to almost all Wehrmacht units.
The MT-LBu (NATO M1974) was a standard Soviet Artillery Command and Communication vehicle developed to replace the AT-P vehicles, and sharing a lot of components with the MT-LB multipurpose prime mover/transport. It was declined into more than 60 variants, licence-built also by Poland and Bulgaria, exported to some 30 countries, still used by most today, seeing also combat in many conflicts.
17pdr Cruiser A30 Avenger (1944)
The A30 Avenger was another attempt to give the British armored division a suitable tank hunter fitted with the "long" 17 pounder antitank ordnance. However a protracted development based on the transitional Cruiser Tank Challenger (A30) meant the Avenger never really was operational, with even less made than the Challenger. It never really entered service nor was deployed in any theater of war and was retired in the late 1940s.
Rába 38M Botond (1938)
The Rába 38M Botond was WW2 main military truck of the Royal Hungarian Army from 1939 to 1948. It was designed by Rába Magyar Vagon, in Győr, to fill an army request for a 1.5 ton lorry with superior off-road caracteristics, but also simple and cheap for large production. The 1937 prototype designed by Dezső Winkler was adopted as a 6x4 vehicle, capable of carrying 14 troops, 2 tons of supply and a trailer or various artillery pieces; It had an unditching roller and was produced in the A and B variants to around 2500 vehicles by several Hungarian manufacturers, seeing heavy action on the eastern front until 1944.
Dodge 3-tonnes AM "Tanaké" (1940)
The Dodge "Tanaké" armored car was a rather obscure French conversion was made on an imported Truck G60L in Beyrouth in 1940. The vehicle fought with Vichy French troops against the allies in 1941, with the 13th DBLE of the Free Foreign Legion against the Afrika korps in 1942, and in 1948 with the Syrian Arab Legion.
Dodge T110 (1940)
The Dodge T110, also called Dodge Dodge G60L 3-ton 4x2 CMP, was a civilian truck derived into a military model, of which very large quantities (more than 180,000) were built and standardized, in the US but also Canada as the D60. Rhey were used on all fronts, starting with North Africa in 1941 as well as the Soviet Army under lend-lease until 1945. It was called at the beginning the "streamined wonder" and led to many derived models like the Air Portable T-236 and the T-234 "China/Burma" truck at the end of the war, or the short wheelbase D15 also built in Canada. One interesting armored car derived was the French Tanaké.
Vickers Carden-Loyd light amphibious tank (1931)
The Vickers Carden-Loyd light amphibious tank, also known as the army prototypes (war office) A4E11 and A4E12 and manufacturer names L1E1 and L1E2, was an experimentak floating light tank which was never adopted by the British Army but instead was exported to Japan, the Dutch KNIL, and China, where most were used in combat and lost.
Bianchi Miles (1938)
The Bianchi Miles was a medium pure military truck built in very large quantity as the sole Milanese company model from 1939 to 1943. It derived from the 1935 Bianchi Mediolanum, and had a differently shaped cab. A turdy and popular model, it was largely used in Tunisia, Italy, and Russia, since it used a battery-driven starter. 10,000 were produced until production was taken over by Germany until late 1944. The Bianchi Civis was its peacetime, postwar variant produced in to the late 1950s.
PGZ 88 (1986)
The Type 88, also referred as the PGZ-88, was a self-propelled anti-aircraft gun, first was revealed in 1989. Developed since the early 1980s it was fully-automatic, but only a 24 were built for evaluation trials; It was never accepted for service nor exported but helped pave the way for better systems like the Type 95 and Type 07. As of today these vehicles has been displayed and stored, kept in reserve or scrapped.
17pdr Sp Achilles (1943)
The 17 Pdr SP (M10 C) Achilles was a conversion of the lend-lease, US-built, M10 Wolverine Tank Hunter, in order to accomodate the excellent Orndance 17 pounder antitank gun supplied in large quantities from late 1943 to the British Army and soon supplied to the Canadians and Free Polish Forces. Over 1,100 were converted until April 1945, soldiering from Normandy to Italy and Germany.
Steyr-Puch Pinzgauer (1969)
One of the 4x4 milestone trucks of post-war Europe was found in Austria. Designed much later than the German Mercedes Unimog, this vehicle proceeded of a different path: Not simple a rugged off-road light utility truck mostly intended for agricultural work, but a replacement for the already existing Haflinger 700 AP 4×4 vehicle, from Steyr-Daimler-Puch in Graz. The name was of an Austrian breed of cattle (Austrian cow). It was produced to an extent of 18,350 until 2007, passed on BAE Systems Land & Armaments under licence in 2000, but production ceased in 2009.
Bushmaster PMV (1995)
The Bushmaster Protected Mobility Vehicle is the first armoured vehicle to be designed and completely manufactured in Australia since the Sentinel tank during World War II. It is a four-wheel drive "Infantry Mobility Vehicle" initiated by the government-owned Australian Defence Industries (ADI), but currently by Thales Australia, under contract by Oshkosh Truck (which owns now ADI). It is in service outside the Australian Army, with the RAAF, the Royal Netherlands Army, British Army, JGSDF, Indonesia, Fiji, Jamaica, New Zealand and Ukraine.
The 9P162 Kornet-T is an anti-tank missile carrier designed in Russia on the basis of the BMP-3 IFV
, part of the 9K128 "Kornet-T" complex, and design to carry and operate the 9M133 Kornet anti-tank guided missile. It was designed to replace the older 9P149 Shturm-S
based on the MT-LB, but also the 9P148 Konkurs
based on BRDM-2 armored scout car. First Kornet-T anti-tank missile carriers were delivered in 2003, but tests and fixes were ongoing for many more years. A first batch of 20 were delivered to the Russian Army in 2012.
Polaris Dagor (2013)
The light tactical utility vehicle was developed by Polaris in 2013-2014 to answer the Joint Light Tactical vehicle Program of the USMC/US army. It was adopted for SOCOM and international SOF teams (Allied spec ops teams). Its basic 4x4, high speed, COTS maintenance/reliability, 48 points armament ring-mount, and helicopter-compatible tactical mobility is compounded by a nine passenger capability and modularity.
Schwerer Panzerspähwagen (7,5 cm) auf Sd. Kfz. 233 (1942)
The schwerer Panzerspähwagen (7,5 cm) Sd. Kfz. 233, or simply know as the "Sd.Kfz.233" was part of the family of heavy reconnaissance 8x8 armored cars developed from 1937, starting with the Sd.Kfz. 231
; It was developed in 1942 when the need arise in reconnaissance batallions to field a dedicated artillery support vehicle. The Sd.Kfz 233 armed with the ubiquitous 7,5 cm K37 L24 also shared by the early Panzer IV and 135 vehicles were manufactured from July 1942 to October 1943.
M12 GMC (1942)
The M12 GMC was the first heavy self-propelled gun in service with the US Army during WW2. It had a rocky past, developed in early 1942 and produced to just 100 vehicles that were send in storehouse apart those kept for training. In early 1944 however 75 were dusted out to be modernized and sent to equip several artillery batallions deployed for the Normandy Landings. The M16 GMC, assisted by the M30 ammo carrier, had a remarkable career until the end of the war in Europe, still equipped with a vintage WW1 155 mm gun.
The Taian HTF5680 is a basic 12x12 multipurpose truck mostly designed to carry a variety of payloads, and is powered by a 500 hp licence-built Deutz diesel engine. The HFT5680A1 was a variant with a modified cab, tailored to carry larger missiles with the tip protruding through the cab, which in that case is the notorious DF-26 "carrier-killer" ballistic missile.
The Tank Romanesc model 85 is the actual main battle tank of the armed forces, studied during the cold war to succeed to the TR-77, equipped with a new Romanian powerpack, transmission, gearbox, wheeltrain, suspensions, and fire control system, among others. The TR-85M1 Bizonul was developed with a new turret bustle from 1994 and many other upgrades. Only 54 are currently in active service today, alongside 250 TR-85, the rest placed in reserve or converted into special vehicles, for a grand total of 617 vehicles.
D-442 FUG (1963)
The Soviet BRDM-2 was a simple and versatile vehicle that draw attention of Warsaw Pact countries as a good candidate to be copied, or emulated by their own industries. Hungary was one such country. The D-442 FUG (Felderítő Úszó Gépkocsi "amphibious reconnaissance vehicle") and its main variant, the D-944 PSZH (Páncélozott Személyszállító Harcjármű – "armored personnel carrier") were both product of Hungarian domestic development, for a vehicle that was even cheaper, and amphibious, exported to Czechoslovakia, East Germany and Poland among others
Last Truck Encyclopedia Entry: Sd.Kfz.11 (1936)
The Sd.Kfz. 11 Leichtes Zugkraftwagen 3 ton was a German half-track in heavy use during World War II. Second "light" prime mover of the Wehrmacht, towing light to medium guns and howitzers or FLAK ordnance, Nebelwerfer Rockets, or troops and supplies with a trailer. The base model H kl 6 was built by Hanomag, and declined into five specialized versions plus the derived Sd.Kfz.250 and a 2cm FLAK armored carrier. With 9,000 delivered until 1945, it saw action with many units on all battlefields in WW2, especially the eastern front.
The BOV is a 4x4 armoured vehicle designed and built in Yugoslavia during the latter part of the cold war. It was designed originally as a tank hunter put into service as the POLO M83, and later declined into an APC version (M86 or later BOV-VP), and a SPAAG version BOV-3. Production went up to circa 650 vehicles, which soldiered in the Yugoslavian wars and is still produced in Serbia as the BOV-2 by Yugoimport, while older vehicles were passed onto successors states.
2cm Flak 38 auf Selbstfahrlafette Zgkw.3t (Sd Kfz.11) (1943)
Also called SdKfz 11/1 (late version), this derivative of the Sd.Kfz 11 light prime mover and utility half track of the Wehrmacht, was armored with a body recalling the SdKfz 251 used by the Panzergrenadiers. But it carried on its flatbed a 2 cm Kanone FLAK 38 for organic AA defense of various units, being apressing issue in 1944 with the gradual loss of air supremacy over Europe. The vehicle had no nickname, and served on the Eastern Front and Normandy until the fall of Germany in May 1945, often also as close support vehicle.
9K31 Strela-1 (1968)
The 9K31 Strela-1 is the TEL 4x4, or carrier derived from the 1960 BRDM-2, part of the weapons system 9P31, including the missile 9K31 (NATO SA-9 GASKIN). It was developed from 1960 in complement to the ZSU-23-4 Shilka SPAAG to bring an organic short/medium range of combined AA guns and missiles for anti-aicraft defense of the Warsaw Pact armies. Produced to about 2,000 vehicles, used by all Warsaw Pact countries and largely exported, it saw plenty of action since the 1970s, and it's certainly not over. It's seeker was unique in that it could engage incoming jets, not possible for other IR seeking systems.
Last Truck Encyclopedia Entry: Peugeot P4 (1981)
The Peugeot P4 was the planned replacement for the old Hotchkiss M201 series Jeeps used in the French Army from 1948, themselves replacing the worn-out lend-lease Willys WW2 models. A long selection process in the late 1970s eventually ended with the choice of a licenced-built Mercedes G type by Peugeot, with about 13,000 ordered and delivered both by Peugeot and Panhard, with gasoline and diesels. This vehicle formed the base 4x4 light utility vehicle of the French Army from 1981 until recent years.
Peugeot PVP APC (1995)
The Panhard PVP (for "petit vehicle protégé") was an armored light utility vehicle intended to partially replace the Peugeot P4 softskin utility vehicle on some missions. The P4 indeed revealed its vulnerability in combat in ex-Yugoslavia in 1995 peace-keeping operations. Panhard developed a protection kit (P4P) but the French army launched procurement for the future PVP, developed and produced, by successively Auverland, Panhard, Renault Truck Defense and now Aquus as the "Dagger". 1133 has been produced from 2004 to 2012. More modern versions are now marketed.
Ford 3-ton tank (1917)
The Ford 3-Ton M1918 was one of the first tank designs, intended for a 15,000 strong production in 1919. It was a small two-man, turretless, one-MG tank capable of 8 mph (13 km/h), with a range of 34 miles (55 km). Of the 15 prototypes, a single one was tested in France in 1918, but the order was cancelled at the end of the war.
Altay Main Battle Tank (2012)
The Turkish Altay Main Battle Tank (3rd gen.) development could be traced back to 1993 but it's only from 2010 that the project gained traction. After prototypes in 2016-2021, a first batch signed in 2012 should see a production start in 2023 (it was delayed twice, notably due to COVID, and powerplant issues). A total of 1,000 had been planned in order to replace the four existing main tank types in service in the Turkish Armies, and most probably upgrade the current Leopard 2A4.
TOS-1 Buratino (1988)
The TOS-1 Buratino ("Pinocchio") system was developed back in the 1980s. The idea of themobaric or napalm rockets was to create a large cloud of flammable gas, also causing massive explosions in the process to clear out bunkers and fortifications of any kind on the battlefield. It was based on the trusted T-72 MBT chassis, production has remained ellusive, but the vehicle was modernized and also widely exported, seeing combat action since the fall of USSR.
Shaanxi Baoji Tiger APC (2010)
Called the ShaanXi Baoji Special Vehicle "China Tiger", the vehicle was first revealed at At Eurosatory 2012 Defence Exhibition by the Chinese defence Company Shaanxi Baoji Special Vehicles Manufacturing. This new 4x4 armoured vehicle personnel carrier was developed for the international market under the name "Tiger". Currently still produced, exported so far to Bahamas (2), Bolivia (24) and Somalia (12).
Chinese PLA ZBD-03 IFV (2002)
Introduced in 2002, the Chinese ZBD-03 is today the mainstay of the Chinese PLA airborne divisions, as infantry fighting vehicle. It was first designed in 1998 and was produced in the 2000s to perhaps 1,500 vehcles, also declined into the specialized variants of Command Post and ATGMS tank hunter, mirorring the Russian BMD-2
2S25 Sprut SD (2005)
Introduced in 2004, the 2S25 self propelled airborne and amphibious tank destroyer was produced at the Volgograd Tractor Plant, and circa 30 or less has been produced so far as of 2018. Replacement has been planned already and it seemed no further orders would be delivered. The vehicle is still actie in an operational airborne brigade with 24 vehicles today.
Semovente da 149/40 (1943)
The Semovente da 149/40 was the ultimate, heaviest built Italian self propelled gun of WW2. It used the Cannone da 149/40 modello 1935, mated on a M15/42 M42 chassis by Ansaldo leading to a prototype in December 1942, but production setup dragged on until Italy capitulated, and the sole protoype ended in Germany.
Trucks and 4x4 military softskin vehicles
GMC G506 1.5 ton 4x4 truck (1940)
One of the bedrock of allied transportation in WW2 was the G-506 truck, known in ordnance as the "1+1⁄2-ton, 4x4 cargo truck" which most prolific model was the G 7100 (originally G 4100), the standard light medium four wheel drive truck. It was also provided via lend-lease to US allies during the war, and still saw action in the cold war, with a multitude of specialized bodies. As the 6x6 GMC-353 was nicknamed "Jimmy", the G-506 was nicknamed "Chevy" in reference to Chevrolet.