Friday, July 10, 2009

Marmon-Herrington Armoured Car

The Marmon-Herrington Armoured Car is rather unknown during the war. Together with the Lancaster Armoured Cars they held up against the mightier Japanese tanks. The British thought tanks were unsuitable for the tropical terrain and all they have were the obsolete armoured cars. Very little is written about this vehicles during the invasion. Maybe too insignificant to the retreating troops.
The South African Reconnaissance Car, better known under its British designation Marmon-Herrington Armoured Car, was an armoured vehicle produced in South Africa and adopted by the British Army during the World War II. he Mk II had a shorter wheelbase than the Mark I and 4x4 drive and was known in British service as Armoured Car, Marmon-Herrington Mk II. It and the Mk III were extensively used mostly for reconnaissance being the only armoured car available in sufficient numbers, and had a reputation as a reliable, but underarmoured vehicle. Their normal armament, consisting of a 0.55 inch Boys anti-tank rifle in a turret, a coaxial Bren machine gun and one or two additional machine guns for anti-aircraft defence, was also considered insufficient. British service units modified some of the vehicles to carry various guns, including the Italian 20 mm and 47 mm Breda, the German 37 mm PaK 35/36 and the 2.8 cm sPzB 41 taper bore gun, the French 25 mm gun, the 20 mm Oerlikon cannon and the British QF 2 pounderanti-tank gun. As there was no place for a gun in the small turret, the latter had to be removed and the crew had to rely on the gun shield for protection. Some other vehicles were adapted to serve as artillery observation post vehicles, ambulances, command cars, recovery vehicles, and Royal Air Force liaison cars. The Mark III was slightly shorter than the Mark II without its double doors.

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