Armoured Vehicles

Challenger 2

The superb Challenger 2 (CR2) is the British Army's Main Battle Tank.
Only 5 per cent of Challenger 2 components are interchangeable with its predecessor; over 150 major modifications include a completely new turret, L30 CHARM 120mm gun and second generation Chobham armour.

Challenger 2's Thermal Observation and Gunnery (TOGS) displays a magnified image for the commander and gunner. The commander has a gyro-stabilised fully panoramic sight with laser range finder and thermal imager. The gunner is equipped with a gyro-stabilised primary sight with a laser range finder and coaxially mounted auxiliary sight. The driver's position has an image-intensifying day and night periscope, and the loader has a day sight.

Crew   4
Length   11.55 m (gun front)
Width   3.5 m
Height to turret roof 2.49 m
Combat Weight  62,500 kg
Main Armament  120 mm L30 CHARM (Callenger Main Armament) Gun 
Ammunition  50 rounds-APFDS-HESH-Smoke
Secondary Armament Co-Axial 7.62 mm Chain Gun, 7.62 GPMG turret mounted 
Ammunition  4000 rounds 7.62 mm
Engine   1200 BHP Perkins-Condor V12
Max Speed  59 kph            

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Fuchs

The Fuchs vehicles were initially gifted to the UK for the first Gulf War, since when they have been upgraded to be one of the most technologically advanced vehicles of their type in the world. They are manned by a crew of four, Commander, Driver and two Operators. The Fuchs were the first British vehicles into Iraq of the main ground force during the first Gulf War. The vehicle is fully amphibious with a speed through water of 10 kts. The Fuchs forms part of the armoured arm of the CBRN Regiment which facilitates freedom of movement while the Land Forces advance.

Crew   4
Operational Weight 18 tonnes
Dimensions  7.3 m(L) 2.43 m (H) 2.98 m (W)
Maximum Road Speed 105 kph
Engine   Mercedes Benz v8 liquid cooled diesel
Armament  1 x 7.62 mm GPMG, 6 smoke dischargers
Road Range  800km

 

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Chieftain MBT

The Chieftain replaced the Centurion. It introduced some noteworthy features such as formidable 120mm rifled gun. The tank was produced in several models up to MK 12 standards. The hull and turret were of cast rolled steel welded together. The tank had excellent ballistic shape, thus increasing its survivability on the battlefield. The later MK 11 & 12 were fitted with Stillbrew armour. This appliqué composite armour gave increased protection against heat and kinetic energy projectiles. It was in the services with the British Army up until 1995.

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Alvis Saladin Armoured Car

Design of the Saladin Armoured Car dates back to 1947, but it was not until 1958 that the first production models were completed. The Saladin uses many components of the FV 603 Saracen APC, one of the differences being that the Saracen has its engine in the front and the Saladin has its Rolls-Royce engine in the rear.

The Saladin was employed extensively around the globe until production was stopped in 1972. In Britain, the Saladin was replaced by the Scorpion.

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Centurion

The Centurion was developed during World War II as a cruiser tank in 1945 and MK 2s entered service after the end of the war. Centurion is regarded as one of the best British tank designs of all time. It underwent many modifications over the years and, in one form or another, saw action in wars from Korea and Vietnam, to India and the Gulf.

Numerous Centurion cruiser tanks are still in service around the globe today.

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Comet

The Comet was developed when battle experience indicated the need for a cruiser tank with a gun heavier than 75mm the tank was similar in layout to the Cromwell, but with a re-designed turret to house the bigger gun. The hull and turret were all welded and the Comet had improved and thicker armour.

It was not used in action until after the Rhine crossing in early 1945. IT was very successful, as it proved to be fast and reliable, and the 77mm gun was highly accurate.

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M4 Sherman

The Sherman is arguably one of the greatest tanks of World War II, and more than 58,000 were built. It was a good, straightforward design, which proved adaptable, so the armament and armour modification could be introduced to enable it to match its opponents to the end of the war.

The Sherman was used by British and American forces on nearly all battle fronts from 1942 onwards and several thousand were supplied to the Russians.

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Mark IV, Churchill

In August 1942, Churchills were first used in action in the Dieppe raid. Two others were supplied to the Russians, and in October, six Churchills were tested in battle at Alamein.

The Churchill operated quite successfully in Tunisia, sometimes in Tunisia, sometimes in mountainous country and also in Italy towards the end of the war. Several brigades of Churchills fought in the North West Europe campaign, where their heavy armour proved useful, particularly in actions such as the assaults on the Channel ports.

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Rolls-Royce 1920 & 1924

The Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost chassis was used in the new type of armoured car built after World War I with a design heavily influenced by the Admiralty 1914 turreted pattern (originally ordered by Winston Churchill). The 1920 Pattern differed from the wartime cars only in detail.

The 1924 Pattern had a redesigned hull and a new turret with a cupola for the commander. These cars were used up until 1940-41 and saw action in the early Libyan campaign.

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Tank, Mark V

The Mark V was the first heavy tank that could be controlled by one man, with the driver operating an epicyclical gear system designed by Major W.G. Wilson. A specially designed Ricardo engine of 150hp was used and proved reliable in service. The radiator however, was inside the tank and ventilation proved less effective than in earlier models.

In 1918, 200 Female (machine guns) and 200 Male (cannon) Mark Vs were produced.

The first battle in which they took part was at Hamel in 1918.



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