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FV601 Saladin - Бронеавтомобиль (Великобритания)

FV601 Saladin

FV601 Saladin is a six-wheeled armoured car developed by Crossley Motors and later manufactured by Alvis. Designed in 1954, it replaced the AEC Armoured Car in service with the British Army from 1958 onward. The vehicle weighed 11 tonnes, offered a top speed of 72 km/h, and had a crew of three. Saladins were noted for their excellent performance in desert conditions, and found favour with a number of Middle Eastern armies accordingly. They were armed with a 76 mm low-pressure rifled gun which fired the same ammunition as that mounted on the FV101 Scorpion.
The Saladin also spawned an armoured personnel carrier counterpart, the Alvis Saracen.
Despite the vehicle's age and dated design, it is still in use in a number of countries in secondary roles.

FV601 Saladin
Type - Armoured car
Place of origin - United Kingdom
Service history
Wars - Aden Emergency / Biafran War / Dhofar Rebellion / Lebanese Civil War / Second Sudanese Civil War / Six-Day War / Sri Lankan Civil War / Vietnam War
Production history
Designer - Crossley Motors
Designed - 1954
Manufacturer - Alvis
Produced - 1958-1972
No. built - 1,177
Mass - 11.6 t
Length - 4.93 m (16 ft 2 in)
Width - 2.54 m (8 ft 4 in)
Height - 2.39 m (7 ft 10 in)
Crew - 3
Armour - Up to 32 mm (1.3 in)
Main armament - 76 mm L5A1 gun with 42 rounds
Secondary armament - 2 x M1919A4 machine gun with 3,500 rounds
Engine - Rolls-Royce B80 Mk.6A, 8 cyl. petrol / 170 hp (127 kW)
Power/weight - 15.5 hp/tonne
Suspension - 6x6 wheel
Operational range - 400 km (250 mi)
Maximum speed - 72 km/h (45 mph)

Following the end of the Second World War, the British Army issued a requirement for a new, 6x6 wheeled armoured vehicle to replace the obsolete AEC Armoured Car. Design work began in 1947 and a contract was awarded to Alvis Cars to build two prototypes for trials. The new armoured car was designated FV601A and armed with an Ordnance QF 2-pounder gun. Alvis also proposed a much heavier fire support variant designated FV601B armed with a new 76 mm low-pressure gun. Design work on the FV601B was subcontracted to Crossley Motors, which engineered and manufactured six pre-production models. After further modifications by Alvis, the FV601C entered mass production in 1958 as the Alvis Saladin. Production of the FV601C and its variants continued at the Alvis factory at Coventry until 1972.
A special variant known as the FV601D was developed for law enforcement agencies and internal security purposes; this model lacked a co-axial machine gun and had different lights and smoke dischargers. The FV601D was only adopted by the German Federal Bundesgrenzschutz, which designated it Geschützter Sonderwagen III. A Saladin was also offered with the same 30 mm RARDEN autocannon as found on the FV510 Warrior and FV721 Fox, but this model did not find favour with the British military or any export customers.
The Federal Republic of Germany was the first country to express an interest in the Saladin, specifically the FV601D. When production began, export customers such as Australia, Indonesia, and Ghana also placed large orders for the vehicle. By the late 1960s, the British Army was beginning to dispose of second-hand Saladins as military aid for various Commonwealth member states. The Saladin performed well on the export market but was not as successful as its primary competitor, the French Panhard AML-90, which was much more heavily armed, and cheaper.
The Saladin shared many common components with the Saracen armoured personnel carrier, Stalwart high mobility load carrier and Salamander fire tender.

British Army
The Saladin was used by B Sqn 16/5 Lancers during their defence of Nicosia airport in 1974 and subsequent armed recce operations under the banner of the UN.

The Royal Australian Armoured Corps (RAAC) modified Saladin turrets, and fitted them onto M113A1 tracked personnel carriers; this combination was known as the Fire Support Vehicle (FSV). However, the same name was also used for a subsequent vehicle, based on the turret from the FV101 Scorpion (and accepted by the RAAC in 1976). This was later redesignated the Medium Reconnaissance Vehicle (MRV).
The Indonesian Army (TNI AD) uses the Saladin for "KOSTRAD Cavalry Battalion", "KOSTRAD Recon Company" and Armoured Car Company. In 2014, the Indonesian Army confirmed that it was continuing to deploy the Saladin in active operations. Indonesian Vice President Jusuf Kalla charged state-owned arms manufacturer Pindad with developing a modernization package for the Saladin in early 2016, indicating the armoured car would continue to remain in service for some time. By the end of the year 16 Indonesian Army Saladins had been modernized by Pindad.
During the 1990 invasion of Kuwait, Saladins were filmed on the streets of Kuwait City during Battle of Dasman Palace against Iraqi forces.
The Saladin was widely used by the Sultan of Oman's armed forces throughout the Omani Civil War, and saw extensive action during the period 1971 to 1976, supporting ground forces and on convoy patrol. Often crewed by British servicemen (loan soldiers) and Omani servicemen, the Sultan's Armoured Car Squadron consisted of an estimated 36 Saladins. They saw extensive action supporting troops from the British SAS, Oman Firqa, Oman regulars, and Iranian forces in their war with the Adoo. The squadron's vehicles were regularly attacked by Katyusha rockets, anti-tank mines, rocket propelled grenades, and light and heavy machine gun fire. Many vehicles were mined and repaired, and after the end of the war in 1976 the Saladin remained in service until the early 1980s. An unpublished account called The Tinned Equivalent was written in 1977, and details many of the events of that war.
Sri Lanka
The Ceylon Army received several ex-British Army Saladins following the outbreak of the 1971 JVP insurrection and were deployed counter-insurgency operations. These were used extensively by the Sri Lanka Armoured Corps in the 1980s in the early stages of the Sri Lankan Civil War, with its 76 mm gun being effective in countering insurgents. However, the wheeled vehicles had limited cross country capabilities and suffered damage from IEDs and RPGs in urban areas. In one case, in July 1987 during an insurgent attack on an army encampment in Jaffna, a Saladin was knocked out when an RPG entered through the drivers viewing portal, killing the driver and a sergeant inside. The LTTE mounted the turret of a captured Saladin on to a captured YW531 turning it into a light tank, which was later captured by the Sri Lankan Army at the end of the civil war. The Sri Lankan Army phased out its Saladin's from its A list in the 1990's due to lack spares from the United Kingdom and replaced it with BMP-1 IFV after an order for Cadillac Gage Commandos fell though. It retained one for ceremonial use. Saladins remained in reserve status till the end of the war in 2009. It forms the tank crew pin of the Sri Lanka Armoured Corps.
The Sudanese Army deployed Saladins during the Second Sudanese Civil War, some being captured by the SPLA.
West Germany
Nearly 100 Saladins were exported to the Federal Republic of Germany as part of a British assistance programme for the fledgling Bundesgrenzschutz in the mid to late 1950s. In German service they were designated Geschützter Sonderwagen III and utilised for border patrols. All but 25, along with the entire German inventory of spare parts, were later resold to Honduras as part of a $7 million deal negotiated through Honduran defence contractor Gerard Latchinian. Honduran Saladins could be seen in the streets of Tegucigalpa in the 2009 coup against President Manuel Zelaya.

Bahrain: 8
Ghana: 15
Honduras: 72 (ex-German examples / purchased in 1984 / 40 operational)
Indonesia: 69 (modernized in 2016)
Jordan: 130
Kenya: 10
Kuwait: 60
Lebanon: 40 (possibly donated by Jordan)
Mauritania: 40 (10 operational)
Nigeria: 16
Oman: 10
Qatar: 30
Sudan: 9
Tunisia: 20
Uganda: 36
United Arab Emirates: 70 (20 operational)
Yemen: 15

Former operator`S
Federal Republic of Germany: 97 (used by the Bundesgrenzschutz)
Iraq: (captured Kuwaiti Vehicles, all scrapped or destroyed)
Libya: 40
Portugal: 39
Sierra Leone: 4
Sri Lanka: 18 (1 used in parades)
United Kingdom: (all retired and replaced by the FV101 Scorpion)

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