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Ratel

The Ratel is a range of 6x6 infantry combat vehicles which has been truly tested in battle and has shown itself to be a most cost-effective system in terms of both operational purpose and cost. In its primary role the Ratel is fitted with a 20 mm or 90 mm gun. Variants include an armoured command vehicle, equipped with a 12,7 mm machine gun or a 20 mm gun, a missile launcher, a 60 mm and 81 mm mortar as well as logistic and recovery vehicles.

The South African Army was using the 6x6 British Alvis Saracen APC for several years before the acquisition of spare parts become problematic due to the arms emborgo, the South Africans decided to manufacture a new vehicle to satisfy their needs. After building the Eland, a modified version of the 4x4 Panhard AML armoured car, Sandock then undertook to design a replacement for the Saracen. The prototype was completed in 1976, and the first units rolled out the following year. Since then, over a thousand Ratel vehicles were manufactured.

It took into account the local conditions and requirements. The first wheeled IFV designed and but into military service. It is also the first IFV with a commanders Cupola. Armour protection is given against small arms fire and the hull design offers protection in the event of a land mine detonation. The tyres are run-flat types. The doors open to the side, with hatches to the top and an access door at the rear of the vehicle.

The Ratel 20 IFV is a wheeled, infantry fighting vehicle designed in the early 1970s to circumvent the arms embargo of South Africa. The vehicle is equipped with a turret-mounted 20mm autocannon, a coaxial MG-4, another MG-4 (C), and yet another MG-4 pintle-mounted on the rear roof (manned by the infantry squad). Main entrance to the passenger compartment is via a large door on either side of the vehicle. There is also a driver's hatch on the front deck, hatches for the commander and gunner on top of the turret, and eight hatches on the rear deck. There are four firing ports on each side that will accept any assault rifle or submachinegun. The Ratel 20 is used by South Africa and has been sold to undisclosed countries.

The Ratel 12.7 Command is a command version of the Ratel armored personnel carrier. The Ratel 12.7 has a two-man turret with an M-2HB, and a MAG in a mount on the rear roof. The command Ratel has three radios, a tape recorder with time injection, a combined receiver and cassette recorder, internal loudspeakers, a PA system, a pneumatic radio mast, and map boards.

The Ratel 60 is a wheeled infantry support vehicle designed in the early 1970s to circumvent the arms embargo of South Africa during apartheid. The vehicle is equipped with a turret-mounted 60mm Gun/Mortar, a coaxial MG-4, another MG-4 (C), and yet another pintle-mounted on the rear deck and manned by the infantry squad the Ratel 60 normally carries. Main entrance to the passenger compartment is via a large door on either side of the vehicle. There is also a driver's hatch on the front deck, hatches for the commander and gunner on the turret deck, and eight hatches over the passenger compartment (four to a side of the deck). There are four firing ports on each side that will accept any assault rifle or submachinegun. The Ratel 60 is used by South Africa and has been sold to several undisclosed countries.

The Ratel 90 is a wheeled fire support vehicle designed in the mid-1970s to circumvent the arms embargo of South Africa during apartheid. The vehicle is equipped with a turret-mounted 90mm gun, a coaxial MG-4 (the South African-made version of the MAG), another MG-4 (C), and yet another MG-4 pintle-mounted on the rear deck. Main entrance to the passenger compartment (not normally used) is via a large door on either side of the vehicle. There is also a driver's hatch on the front hull deck, hatches for the commander and gunner on top of the turret, and eight hatches on the rear deck for passengers. There are four firing ports on each side that will accept any assault rifle or submachinegun. The Ratel 90 is used by South Africa and has been sold to several undisclosed countries.



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