The history of French tanks — legends and forgotten projects

Creating a French armored vehicles came even during the country's occupation by Nazi invaders. Liberation of French countryside, for it marked not only the victory, and the hard recovery process and the creation of the army. Our story begins with the transition of the tank ARL-44. Beginning of development — '38. It was a new type tanks, which formed the base chassis "B1". According to the project, the tank had to get a tower of the new type of construction and a long-barreled 75mm gun. By the beginning of the war to build tanks were at the level of development. Yes, and during the occupation design work was carried out on the tank more successful than before. And during the liberation of France, starts immediately in the creation of the first model of the new tank. In a series of new tank went in '46, that France was, of course, the feat of the industry, given the fact that the five-year occupation. Due to various circumstances, the tank was a transitional model specific and enters into service as «ARL — 44". French military wanted to get 300 units of tanks, but only built 60 cars in the series. They had adopted the 503rd Tank Regiment.

The tanks are manufactured by «Renault» and «FAMH Schneider», the latter, produces a tower of the new standard. From "B1" newcomer tank got obsolete suspension and caterpillar tracks. On high-speed features of the tank out the most leisurely post-war tank, and had the highest speed of 37 km / h But the engine and chassis have been new developments on the body armor plates were placed at an angle of 45 degrees, which appropriated the frontal armor equivalent of 17 cm is usually installed armor. Turret of the tank was the latest in modern cars. Defect of the tower — the poor quality of joints, and make such a tower is quite a cast, the French industry was just not capable of. On the tower install the 90 mm gun "Schneider". Overall ARL-44 went "bad" tank, but we should not forget that the tank was a transitional model, had within itself the elements of both new and an old tank. What a task, the tank was on sovey essence of "non-military" — a tank with your creation rise from the ashes French tank building, for which he thanks a lot.

Follow-tank, designed by French spices, was «AMX 12t». This is the younger brother of the future French «AMX 13". Already from the name it is clear that the weight of the tank was equal 12 tons. Chassis younger brother had a rear roller bearing, which was at the same time and sloth. As it turned out, this configuration rinks was unreliable and caused constant prepyadstviya track tension. This chassis with a modified configuration of the rollers where the sloth was the individual parts of the chassis, which has led to a lengthening of the hull, has become a base for the development of the legend of French tank designers «AMX-13." AMX 12t tower was the ancestor of the turret «AMX-13." The tank, according to the draft, was equipped with an autoloader.

'46. Completed step of designing a new tank. In accordance with the requirements of 13 AMX had a light weight to move aircraft to support the paratroopers. New AMX 13 is torsion bar suspension, engine, located in front and to the right, while the left is driver-mechanic. The main feature of this tank makes inimitable — Oscillating Tower. The tower was equipped top of the instrument. When the vertical tip-off gun was used only a part of the very highest. Tower installed at the stern of the hull, and housed the rest of the crew of the armored car — the commander and gunner. 75 mm tank gun was projected from the German guns «7.5 cm KwK 42 L/70», are standing on the "Panther" and ensure it is a wide range of projectiles. The tower was quite fascinating automatic reloading system Drum — 2-a drum, each in six rounds. The drums were in the turret. Ammunition 12 tank ammunition allowed to lead a very high-spirited fire, but ran out of ammunition in the drums, it was necessary to hide the tank and make reloading drums manually from outside the vehicle.

Batch creation of AMX 13 started in '52, for its production have been applied power «Atelier de Construction Roanne». For almost 30 years to come into service in the French army. Several hundred units of AMX 13 so far are in the armored divisions of France. One of the most popular European tanks, available in 25 countries. On this day, there are about 100 modifications of the tank. At its base are doing a variety of armored vehicles: self-propelled guns, air defense systems, armored personnel carriers and self-propelled anti-tank.

AMX-13/90- is the first modification of the main AMX 13. First entered service 60 years. The main difference — mounted 90 mm cannon shell and equipped with a muzzle brake. Decreased slightly ammunition — now the tank gun ammunition was 32, of which 12 were installed in a drum store. The gun could fire high-explosive lead, armor-piercing, cumulative, piercing projectiles.

Batignolles-Chatillon 25t is a modification of the design of the main AMX 13. It was created only two units of this modification. To increase the survivability of increasing the size of the machine and assign additional armor. These and several other configurations in the sum given all of the tank — 25 tons. According to the draft, the team consisted of a tank of 4 people, the design speed of this modification — 65 km / h

«Lorraine 40t» was created in pursuit of such monstrosities as the Russian IS-2 and -3 German «Tiger II». Naturally, the tank failed to catch up with these outstanding tanks for no armor, no mass, and probably setting 100 mm and 120 mm guns later was specific attempt to approach them. But all the projects such tanks or remained on paper or been released in limited quantities. All projects in this series was used as a control, the German "Maybach". «Lorraine 40t» was released in 2 copies of the prototype. In fact, it is somewhat lightened «AMX-50." Were present in the solution tank and distinctive features: the tower part, located in the bow of the tank, and "pike nose" — similar to IS-3. Were also used rubber tires for road wheels that gave the tank extra cushioning.

"M4" — the first model languid tank. What would somehow catch up with the Soviet Union and Germany to create a languid tanks, the French designers are beginning to build their own languid tank. First modification is the title of "M4" or project 141. This model is actually copied the German Tiger. Chassis received caterpillars melkozvenchatye performance and "chess" road wheels, suspension with torsion type gidroamortizatsiey. Clearance tank could vary up to 100 mm. Unlike the German Tiger — box and leading feed rollers were run. According to the draft of the tank, he had to weigh about 30 tons, but in practice, this would reduce the booking to 3 cm It looked at the background of the "Tiger" and Isa completely ridiculous. Armor increasing to 9 cm and establish a good corners, because the machine weight increased significantly in comparison with the project. The tank was 90 mm "Schneider" in the tower of the traditional type and a machine gun 7.62 mm. Team Machine — 5 people. This model has not bee
n released even in the layout, because the decision to change the traditional turret piece on the latest from the company «FAMH»

"AMH-50 — 100 mm" — serial heavy tank. The main feature — because of the parallel development of AMH and AMH-50-13 have a huge external similarities with the latter.
'49. Available in two units of the tank "AMH-50 — 100 mm." '51 — The tank is a series of small arms in the French army. Tank came out very good and profitable differed from the South American and the English counterpart. But due to constant lack of funds, "AMH-50 — 100 mm" does not become a mass tank. From the assembly — MTO was in the rear of the hull, the driver-mechanic and his assistant were in office management, vehicle commander was placed in the tower on the left side of the gun, gunner — right. Housing type cast is made with good seating angle frontal armor thickness of the frontal and upper side armor plates — 11 cm Going nose-board is made through a beveled surfaces. It differs from the M4 project with additional rollers (5 external and internal type 4). Machine gun with a front plate is replaced by a coaxial machine gun weapon. Apart from this, part of the tower received a standalone anti-aircraft guns — two machine gun 7.62 mm. The tower of the rocker type was developed by «FAMH». Prior to '50 it installed 90 mm gun, later slightly modified tower set 100 mm cannon. The remaining construction of the tower of the tower structure corresponds AMH-13. DU — petrol Maybach «HL 295" or engine «Saurer» diesel type. Designers expected that the introduction of engines with a capacity of 1000 hp, give the opportunity to purchase the tank speed of about 60 km / h But as time has shown, the tank could not overcome the bar at 55 km / h

«AMX-65t» — Tank Char de 65t — avant-project languid tank. Start flagship product — '50. Suspension of chess-type, four-placement rollers. The frontal armor of the type "pike nose" by analogy Russian IS-3 with the least inclined angle. The rest — a copy of the Royal Tiger. According to the Project Controller — 1000 strong engine "Maybach". The likely armament — 100 mm cannon and anti-aircraft machine gun type.

"AMH-50 — 120 mm" — a heavy tank. Had three versions 53, 55 and 58 year. French "competitor" Russian IS-3. The frontal part is made as a rival — the type of "pike nose". Modification of '53 had a tower with a traditional type of weapon caliber 120 mm. But the design came out awkward. Modification '55tower swinging type with dual 120 mm gun with a 20-mm cannon to destroy lightly armored vehicles. Significantly enhanced frontal armor, actually doubled. This leads to severe weight increase: up to 64 tons against the previous 59 tons. Military authorities such modification due to the increased weight is not liked. Modification '58. "Light" up to 57.8 tons of modification "AMH-50 — 120 mm." Had a cast body and a rounded front armor. It was planned to be used as a control tysyachesilny Maybach. But the engine did not meet expectations: from the claimed 1.2 thousand horses, the engine did not give, and 850 hp The introduction of 120-mm guns led to the disadvantage of reloading ammunition from the gun was hard to move one or two people. Team cars 4th person and hile the fourth crew member was considered as a radio operator, practically is rechargeable. The tank was not built because of a shaped-charge projectiles, this armor is so feeble projectiles was a hindrance. The project is rolled up, but not forgets. Production will be applied in the development of the "AMX-30 MBT"

Not only tanks
«AMX 105 AM» or M-51 — the first self-propelled machine based on «AMX-13", 105 mm self-propelled howitzer type. First model created in '50. First serial ACS joined the ranks of the armed forces of France in '52. ACS was motionless, shifted aft open cockpit. In the control room set 105 mm «Mk61» reference '50 release. At the gun had a muzzle brake. There is also the 7.62 mm anti-aircraft machine gun type. Some ACS «AMX 105 AM» arming additional 7.5 mm machine gun that was installed in the tower with a radial rotation. The main drawback — a slow leveling the subsequent target. 56 ammo ammunition, which included armor-piercing shells and. Range defeat explosive ordnance 15 thousand meters. The barrel produced 23 and 30 gauge, he was provided with a muzzle brake dual-chamber execution. For fire control SPG AMX 105 AM equipped with a 6-fold sight and 4x goniometer. ACS data is exported — they used Morocco, Israel and the Netherlands.

"AMX-13 F3 AM» — the first post-war European ACS. Entered service in '60. ACS had tool caliber 155 mm and length of 33-gauge and effective range of 25 km. Rate — 3 rds / min. "AMX-13 F3 AM» did not take with them ammunition, he drove to her truck. Ammunition — 25 rounds. Also, a truck transporting and 8 — ACS team. Most first "AMX-13 F3 AM» gasoline had an 8-cylinder engine with liquid cooling of the «Sofam Model SGxb.». Recent ACS had a 6-cylinder diesel engine with liquid cooling of the «Detroit Diesel 6V-53T». Diesel was stronger than the internal combustion engine and allow ACS to travel 400 miles at cruising speed of 60 km / h

«BATIGNOLLES-CHATILLON 155mm» project ACS. The basic idea — to set the rotating tower type. Start working on a standard — 55 year. Tower completed design in '58. In '59 the project shall be removed from the layout ACS was not built. According to the draft, speed — 62 km / h, the weight of 34.3 tons, the team consists of 6 people.

«Lorraine 155" — ACS Type 50 and 51. Base Project — Base «Lorraine 40t» with the installation of 155 mm howitzer guns. The basic idea — placement of the Casemates. First, in the first swatch is located in the heart of ACS, in a subsequent example — has moved to the bow ACS. Owning a rubberized chassis rollers made SPG fun option for use. But in the '55 draft closed in favor of another project SAU «BATIGNOLLES-CHATILLON». The main data: weight — 30.3 tons, the team — 5 people, speed — up to 62 km / h Armament ACS — caliber 155 mm howitzer and coupled with her 20-mm cannon.

«AMX AC de 120," the first project of the type of self-propelled artillery systems based on the "M4" standard '46. Received a "checkerboard" suspension and cockpit in the bow. Outside was similar to the German «JagdPanther». Project data: weight ACS — 34 tons, Armor — 30/20 mm, the team — 4 people. Armament: 120mm «Schneider» machine gun tower and to the right of cutting. Control Maybach «HL 295" capacity of 1.2 thousand hp «AMX AC de 120" — the second type of self-propelled artillery systems design based on the "M4" standard '48. The main change — cutting design. Changing silhouette of the car: it is noticeably lower. ACS now looked like a «JagdPzIV». Changed armament: cutting ACS received 20 mm «MG 151" turret of the feed ACS two 20 mm «MG 151."

The last considered the project — AMX-50 Foch. Self-propelled artillery system based on «AMX-50", is 120 mm cannon. SAU outlines reminiscent of the German «JagdPanther».
There was a machine-gun turret with CP «Reibel» on the remote control. Commander's Tower was provided rangefinder. ACS driver followed the situation through which had periscope. The main purpose — to support 100 mm tank, liquidation increasingly insecure enemy armored vehicles. After successful tests in 51 small amount goes to the French army weapons. After that, the standardization of weapons of NATO, SAU assembly is removed from the stream and '52 project closed in favor of tank design "creation AMX-50-120."

Like this post? Please share to your friends: