In 1946, the French government has decided to equip its army with Russian-made tanks. Was given an order to develop a light aerotransportabelnogo tank weighing 13 tons in 1949, he was made an experienced model, and in 1951 started its mass creation. The five-year period from order to achieve mass production of large, given the sad state of French industry after the war.
The assembly of the tank is different from the traditional: power department located in the front part of the body, followed by the separation of management and fighting compartment in the stern. The frontal body part is made with bolshennymi angles. Tank AMX-13 (or AMX-51, year of release) is one of the most unique in the history of tank development due to the installation of its so-called oscillating tower. Occasionally when some tank caused so much controversy and had so many enemies.
Composite swinging tower FL-10 consists of a lower and an upper rotating portion connected to the lower trunnion means. 75-mm gun (Initial velocity armor-piercing projectile of 1000 m / s) is set aggressively in the upper part of the tower and taken out of it ahead — in the tower left only breech. The recoil of the concentric type devices are placed in the «trunk» of the front of the tower. The tower got a small in size, but it had a small diameter of the shoulder straps, which, in turn, has reduced the width of the hull.
This tower Designed specifically in order to introduce mechanized (automatic) loading of the gun. On both sides of the turret recess in the breech gun has two drum-type magazine 6 rounds each. Power rollback twists store and release another cartridge that slips into the tray, the axis of which coincides with the axis of the barrel of a gun. Then the cartridge shall be sent automatically to the trunk, locked the gate and made the shot. This device provides a rate of 10-12 rounds per minute and avoids the charging of the crew. After shooting ammunition, essentially unarmed tank must leave the battlefield and go to recharge shops. They are filled through hatches in the roof of the tower. The angle of the cannon fodder niche is limited focus of the tower on the roof of the body and is 13 °.
The eight-cylinder carburetor engine mounted in the front of the chassis on the right. Power transmission is placed across the tank and consists of a manual gearbox and dual differential as a rotation mechanism. Personal torsion suspension.
Batch creation of the tank was completed in 1964, but its base is used to this day for the creation of countless families (about 20) and a variety of combat support vehicles: self-propelled 105-mm and 155-mm howitzers, 120-mm mortars, self-propelled twin 30mm anti-aircraft , armored personnel carriers, bridge layer, etc. Since 1968, the tank is produced under license in Argentina. In all there were about 7,000 cars of family AMX-13.
AMX-13 tanks were on the modernization of armament. 75-mm gun was replaced by 90 mm. On the part of the machines on the front part of the tower mounted ATGM 4 SS-11. In 70 years on the AMX-13 is a change tower with 105-mm gun and a laser rangefinder. The cumulative projectile gun has an initial velocity of 800 m / s and hit the 400-mm armor. Tower FL-10 and its modifications are installed on other machines (namely, tanks «Sherman»).
The tank is in service with the French Army and the armies of some 30 other countries (Switzerland, Belgium, Netherlands, Italy, India, Lebanon, Israel, Egypt, etc.). AMX-13 participated in combat operations in Vietnam in 1953-1954, respectively, in the Middle East in 1956, 1967, 1973, etc.