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Eland 60 obsticle course

Crew: 3 

Combat Mass: 6 mt 

Armament: 75 mm SA49 with 56 rounds (3 in)

3/4 x 7,5mm (0.3 in) MAC Reibel Mgs 4500 rounds

Engine: GM 2.5L (150 in3) inline 4-cyl. wc petrol


Speed: Road 85 km/h 

Operating Range: 400 km 



The first model derived from the licence was the VA (Vehicle A) Mk2 used by reconnaissance and cavalry units in 1964. After succesful trials, the model was built by four companies with an order of 300 and 150 more, turretless, by Sandock-Austral for further devlopments. The first batch of 56 VA delivered in 1966 did not fared well and were ultimately rejected by the army and returned to Sandock-Austral for modifications. At that time, these vehicles still relied heavily on imported parts from France, although around 40% of the components were now manufactured in South Africa. These batches were therefore upgraded in several stages, the Mk.2 had an improved steering system, the Mk.3 had better brakes, and both received a custom fuel system, while the electric clutches were replaced by hydraulics on the Mk.4.


Although still externally similar to the Panhard, the Mark 4 was entirely overhauled with South African components. The shape of the welded hull and turret were similar, position of the driver in the front center remains unchanged (with a three vision blocks hatch and central IR one), the central fighting compartment still housed the gunner and commander, and at the rear was present a turbocharged General Motors 2.5 l (150 in3) inline 4-cylinder water-cooled petrol, coupled to a 6-speed manual constant mesh transmission. The vehicle rested on four massive wheels, with an independent 4X4 drive suspended on active trailing arms. Through the dismensions remains unchanged, the weight rose to 6 tons (vs. 5.5 tons for the French model). Armour was still relatively thin, around 6 to 12 mm at the front, protecting from light arms to heavy MGs rounds. Armament varied bewteen the tow models ordered, the Eland-60 (60 mm K1 mortar and 56 rounds) and Eland-90 (90 mm Denel GT-2 and 29 rounds); The secondary armament comprised two cal.30 Browning M1919A4E1 with 2400 to 3800 rounds, one coaxial and one the turret top, actioned by the commander. The gun was relatively low-velocity (450 to 750 m/s depending on the round) and could fire HEAT-T, HEAT-P, HE and WP-SMK rounds. The effective range was abour 2,200 m (with HE), and the HEAT-T can penetrate 320 mm at 0° or 150 at 60°. 

Outside this, there was no NBC lining and the vehicle was not amphibious. Its performances were awaited for such lightweight design, with a top speed of 100 kph on flat, and more importantly 450 km of range for a 25 litres/112.5 km average consumption. This way the vehicle was suited for long-range reconnaissance missions, even extended by carrying extra jerrycans. It was also suited for counter-insurgency missions where MBTs were too costly to deploy.


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