1013

by Steven Zaloga
SOVIET WHEELED ARMORED VEHICLES
by Steven Zaloga
~ J I . I ~ J l N . / I
PUBLICATIONS COMPANY
Copynght © 1990
by CONCORD PUBLICATIONS CO
i3Q3.609 Castle Peak Road
Kong Nam Industrial BUilding
10/F, 81. Tsuen Wan
New T err'ltorles, Hong Kong
AU ng,ts reserved. No part of
this publicaclOf1 may be reproduced.
stored In a retrieval system or
transmitted In any form Of' by any
means, electroniC, mechanical,
photocOPYing or otherWise, without
the prior written permiSSion of
Concord Publications Co.
ISBN 962-361 -013-0
We welcome authors who can help
expand oor range of books. If you
would like to submit material, please
feel free to contact us.
Printed In Hong Kong
Front Cover
A BTR·60PU command yehi cJe, currentl y preserved at the Soviet Artill ery and
Engineer Museum i n l eni ngrad.
Back Cover
A BTR-GOPB i nfantry transporter of the Finnish Army. (Yves Debay)
INTRODUCTION
The Soviet Army Ground ForCeS cbssify wheeled
vchicles " KUMff, (Koksnara
mashlml : Wheeled vehicles). This catc:gory
includes IWO broad ohrmorcd vchlcles,
SCOUI vehicles, such as tile UII.DMs. lind :ilrmorcd
such as the IITII.·6oI' B. The Soviet Ground
ForceS often equip their with twO different types
of SOOul vehicles and armored tranSIXlrtcrs, both
wh(elc:d and tracked Iypes. For c)tllmplc. in the 19705,
the IlRDM-2 was the: standard wheeled SCOul vehicle
while the: BRM (based on the BMI'- lj W;l.S the
trllcked SCOUI vehicle. Likewise In the case of :ilrmorcd
Infantry vehicles, the 11'1"11.-70 was the wheeled
transporter, lind the liMP-l was the tracked infantry
comblll vehicle.
The rC;;lson for thiS multipliCity of t ypes Is that
wheeled vehicles less expensive to less
expensi ve 10 than tracked vehicles, The Soviet
Ground Forces extremely large in number It
would be impossible 10 e<l uip all units with
vehicles. Wheeled combat vehicles offer Jeood
mobility In mosl conditions. and are more econornlcal.
The firSI wheeled combat vehicles after World War 2
were: the BTN·'lO and BTR· 152. The IJTR-40, although
deSignated an armored trAnsporter (IlTII in RUSSian means
broneu':msporu:r, armored it waS nOt
primarily intended For InFantry but For
sections lind command groups. It was not entirely
successful as a scout vehicle, lind In the mld· 1950s. beg:111
to be rq>laced by:& fully armored derivative. the UIIOM· I .
The BKOM· 1 was the first true armored scout vehicle
developed for the Soviet Army In the poSt · war years. It
was manufactured both In a scout version. lind In
tank destroyer versions. The BROM· 1 continued 10 serve
In dwindling numbers until the 1970:;, and ,till serves In
small numbers around thc world with foreign armies.
The first Soviet armored infantry uamporter was the
BTN· I 52 . The BTN· I 52 was basically an armored version
of the ZIS· 15 1 truck. The SovietS were very slow 10 begin
mechanizing their Infantry. In World War 2. the German
Wctmnacht, US Army and Bri tish Army had all adOpted
armored Inflntry vehicles, mosl commonl y on half-tr.lck
chaSSiS. The SovietS did not begin this process until the
early 1950s wi th the 8TR-152. In 1957· 5R, the So\'iet
Ground Forces begln reorganlzinK all of the rlne
divisions int O new formations called motor rlne
divisions. These were originally equipped with thc
UTII. -152, but new vehicle WlS In development speCially
for them. Thi s the UTII·60 transporter.
The B1"II.·60 a significant improvement over the
BTR· 152. It was fully amphibious, the Independent
suspension on its dght road wheels gave It much superior
cross·country performance. The original versions, the
I!TR-601' BTR·60A, were: buih In very small numbers.
They were ([ulckl y by the BTII·60PB which
1x:C'.lme the model of this The BTN·60PI!
hls been the most widely produced SOviet armored
transporter, with over 25.000 manufactured. It Is fully
armored. lnd Is e<lulpped with a turret mounted 14.5mm
heavy machIne gun and 7.62mm co·axlal gun.
Although a malor improvement ovcr earli er models. It
was not entlrdy I)()pul:&r with itS crews, sometimes being
the or This
name stemmed from its hull shape. which Is called a
hull " in RUSSian. It used tWO ]Jlsollne engines
which the I)()wertraln arrJllgement led
to mechaniclI problems. [n the gasoline fuel
mlde the vehicle more prone to fires if hit In combat.
Some of these problems were resolved with the
newer BTR· 70 which entered servi ce In the lai C 19705.
The I)TR-70 used new hull desiKn which offered beller
and exit for the troops. In addition, It marked a
switch to diesel engines. The selection of Iwln engincs
for these: vehicles has been to keep the COSt of the vehicle
low. TIle engines used in Ihe IITR,60 and BTII.·70 arc
commonly truck engines. not
armored vehicle engines.
Hoth the BTII·60 lnd BTII-70 were used in comb:it by
Soviet troops in They were commonly used
for convoy escort duty along the d:lnge:rous rOlds leading
from Soviet territory to Kabul , Many were' losl In
ambushes to the mulahidcen reSiStance fighters. In the
final years of the campaign, some units began to Ix:
ree<lulpped with the new IHR-80 armored
Thi s vehicle Is closely reilled to the BTII.·70. but has l
new single diesel engine. cOlllparedlO the Iwln engine in
Ihe BTR·70. As a result, the of the: vehicle is
conSiderably different from the BTR·70.
Although there: have been many changes In the UTII
family of armored transportcrs, the BRDM vehicles
around the UIIDM·2, In service since: the
early I %Os. There been many changes on this
vehicle ovcr the )'Cars, most noti ceably In Ihe
configurAtion of the: e:ngine deck. Otherwise, it is
essentiall y similar, The: UKOM-2 haS formed the basiS for
a large number of Spc:cll U7.ed derivatives. Including
Illlsslle' arme:d lank deStroyers, chemi clI scout vehicles,
command ve:hlcles lnd even the SA-9 Glskln air defense
\'ehi cle. lIeaders will notIce the In
of the BII.DM and BTII f:unlly of \'ehicJcs. This
Is In large melsure due 10 the FlCt that they h:ll' e all been
designed by 1I single Soviet design bureau. thc Dedkov
OKB. one of the: mOst successful Soviet armored \'ehlcle
tealllS,
Besides Ihdr service in the Soviet Army, Soviet
wheeled combat vehicles ha\'e been widely used
thrOUKhout the world. These vehicles have seen combat
in the Middle East Wars, In the Angolan War. in the: Iran·
Iraq Gulf War In the 19805, and el'en in the fighting in
Gren:lda in 198j. The primary aim of thiS book is to
provide modelers with close·up detail photos of these
vehicles, but In addition. rare phOtOs are included here
showing Ihese vehicles in combat lround the world.
The tllalorily of the photos in thIs book are from
officbl US l:>Cpartme:nt of Defense sources. and the
author would like to his for help In Ihls
prolect . The author would al so like to thank James Loop.
George Balin, Christopher Foss, David Isby many
other friends for Ihelr help In preparing thiS book. In
additlon. Ihe author would like to offer a special word of
til U<.)b Fleming and the: Budge Collection for the
opportunity to photogl'2ph this unique privat e coll ection
of finely restored vehicles.
...... The BRDM-l was a derivative of the BTR-40 armored transporter, covered
later in thi s book. The BRDM-l was developed in 1954 as a scout vehicle for
mechanized units. It was fully amphibious, and could carry a variety of machine
guns on external mounts. Thi s vehicl e is currently preserved in the Polish Armed
Forces Museum in Warsaw.
.. Thi s rear view of a BRDM- l shows the rear hydroj et port in the open
position. Water was drawn in underneath the vehicle, and expelled out the rear
for water propulsion. Production of the BROM-l lasted from 1958 to 1968 and
amounted to about 10,000 vehicles. It is no longer widely in service.
<II1II Among the export cl ients of the BRDM- l was the Cuban Army. II is no
longer in fronl-line service in Cuba, but is used for militia training as seen here.
• Indonesia received the BROM- l in the 1960s. 11 was used into
the 1980s, primarly by the Indonesian Marines. Thi s vehi cle shows
a typical armament fit of three SGMB 7.62mm machine guns. Some
Soviet vehicles carried a 12.7mm OShK heavy machine gun in the
center mount instead .
.... The BROM- l served as the basis for three different tank
destroyers. The 2P27, seen here in Polish service in the 1960s, was
armed with the 3M6 Shmel (AT. ' Snapper) wi re guided anit-tank
mi ssi le.
III> The 2P27 tank destroyer carried three 3M6 Shmel
(Bumbl ebee) missiles on elevating launchers. h began to be
replaced after 1960 by an 2P32 tank destroyer improved type using
the more advanced Falanga anti·tank mi ssile.
• Indonesia received the BROM- l in the 1960s. 11 was used into
the 1980s, primarly by the Indonesian Marines. Thi s vehi cle shows
a typical armament fit of three SGMB 7.62mm machine guns. Some
Soviet vehicles carried a 12.7mm OShK heavy machine gun in the
center mount instead .
.... The BROM- l served as the basis for three different tank
destroyers. The 2P27, seen here in Polish service in the 1960s, was
armed with the 3M6 Shmel (AT. ' Snapper) wi re guided anit-tank
mi ssi le.
III> The 2P27 tank destroyer carried three 3M6 Shmel
(Bumbl ebee) missiles on elevating launchers. h began to be
replaced after 1960 by an 2P32 tank destroyer improved type using
the more advanced Falanga anti·tank mi ssile.
"
... A 2P27 tank destroyer with its three missiles in
launch position. These vehicles were not widely
exported outside of the Warsaw Pact at the lime, and
as fa r as is known, never saw combat service before
their retirement in the early 19705 .
....... A close up of the Falanga (AT·2 Swatter) mi ssile
launcher on the 2P32 tank destroyer. The
configuration of the 2P32 was similar to that on the
2P27, but four mi ssiles could be carried.
.... A tank destroyer platoon with two 2P32 (#416
AND 41 1) and one 2P27 (#393) in the lead. Each
motor rifle regiment typical ly had a company of ni ne
of these vehicles, consisting of three platoons wi th
three vehicles each.
In 1961, the 2P32 began to be replaced by an improved type using the
9M 14 Mal yutka mi ssil e in its place. The main advantage of this type is that it
could carry six mi ssi les on the launch rail s, pl us an additional eight in stowage
in the hull. The earlier tank destroyers had little or no reload capacity.
Development of a replacement for the BRDM·1 began in t 962, and
production began in 1968 as the BRDM·2. The BRDM· 2 was about the same si ze
as the BRDM· 1, but used a rear mounted engine. It was regularly filled with a
turret mounted 14.5mm KPVT heavy machine gun with a co-axial 7.62mm
machine, a di stinct advantage over the BRDM·l . This is a BRDM·2 of the Afghan
Army wi th the insignia carried up to the late 1970s.
The BRDM·1 with 9M14 Malyutka mi ssil e could lower the launch array
into the hull when not in use, as seen here on a German vehicle. Its light weight
al so permitted it to be air transported.
An interesting overhead view of a pair of BRDM·l /9M 14 Malyutka tank
destroyers with the armored roof over the missile launchers erected. Careful
examination of the photo will reveal a small armored cover between the two
front hatches which protected the aiming sight for the mi ssiles.
... Two BRDM·2s were supplied to the People's
Revolutionary Army of Grenada, and this one from
the Calvigny Infantry Battalion was knocked out
during fighting wi th paratroopers of the 82nd
Airborne Divi sion on the island during the invasion
by US forces in 1983. The second was captured by
Marine armored units in the SI. George's area.
... The BRDM·2 has been wIdely exported
throughout Afri ca due to its low cost and ease of
maintenance. As a result, it has seen widespread
combat service there in the 1980s .
.... The princi pal armament of the BRDM·2 is the
14.5mm KPVT heavy ma,:hine gun. The turret on the
8RDM·2 is essentiall y the same as the turret on the
8TR-GOPB armored transporter.

20
A cross-section view of the. BRDM·2, 1. Bow deflector screen. 2. Front
towing hook. 3. Infrared driving headlight. 4. Vehicle instrument s. 5. Vehicle
commander's infrared searchlight 6. Peri scopes. 7. Firing porI. 8. 14.5mm KPVT
machine gun. 9. Vehicle air filter/fan. 10. Oi l reservoir. 11. Engine fan. 12.
Hydrojet tunnel. 13. Exhaust muffler. 14. Shock absorber. 15. Engine. 16.
Auxiliary wheel s. 17. Powertrain. 1 B. Ammunition stowage. 19. Vehicle radio.
20. Vehicle wi nch.
A Democrati c Republic of Afghani stan BRDM-2 captured by the
mujahideen rebels in 1987. This i s a late production type with the additional
periscope on the turret roof and the view pori on the left turret side. (David Isby)
·w:. __ .. ··_--
12
13
An interior view of the front compartment of a BRDM-2. The driver sits to
the left , and the vehicl e commander to the right. The cross-shaped markings on
the peri scope housings are for tri als purposes and are not normally carried.
~
A vi ew of the left rear corner of the fighting compartment of a BROM-2. The
turret can be seen in the upper left of the photo. In thi s view, the turret is
traversed towards the rear, and the machine guns are not fitted.
A vi ew from the driver's seat looking back into the ri ght rear corner of the
BRDM-2 hull . The vehicl e interior is the same dark green color as the exteri or
of the vehicle, except for the upper hull sides whi ch are gloss white.
An overall vi ew the BROM-2 interior. In combat, the vehicl e interior
would be a great deal more cramped since a considerabl e amount of space is
taken up with ammunition.
"l1li The configuration of the engine deck on the BRDM-2 evolved through three
styles. Thi s is the third and final configuration, characterized by these distinctive
oval vent and intake covers.
Y The Iraqi Army has modified its BRDM-2s by upgunning some of them with
a 23mm gun derived from the ZU-23 anti·anticraft gun. These also have a
modified sight on the right side of the turret roof. (Chri stopher Foss)
...... The BROM·I tank destroyers were replaced with
new variant s on the BROM·2 chassi s. One of the least
common was thi s type, armed with the Falanga M
(AT·2b Swatter A) anti·tank missile. Thi s version uses
radio command guidance rather than the usual wire
guidance.
... The most common Soviet tank destroyer in the
1970s was the 9PI 22, a combination of the BROM·2
with the 9M 14M Malytuka anti·tank missile. This
parti cular 9P122 lank destroyer was originally in
Egypti an servi ce, captured in the 1973 war, and put
inlo Israeli servi ce as is evident from the markings.
(Christopher Foss)
... A 9PI22 tank destroyer preparing to (ire. Notice
that the cover for the opti cal sight on the right upper
corner of the vehicle superstructure is open.
An i nterior view of a 9PI 22 tank destroyer, showi ng the right side of the
hull compartment occupied by the missile operator. The joy-stick control used
to steer the missile is located immediately i n front of the seat.
A view of the right rear of the hul l compartment in the 9P122. Notice that
there is no easy access between this compartment and the mi ssi le launcher
section; the mi ssi le rails have to be reloaded externally.
A view of the driver's station in a 9PI 22 tank destroyer with the driver's
seat folded. In the lower right side of the photo, the missile operator's joy-stick
is evident.
A view of the left rear portion of the 9P 122 hull behind the driver's seat.
In comparison to the normal BRDM-2, the air filtration system is moved forward
in the hull , over the driver'S left shoulder.

A 9Pl 22 lank destroyer. Although in Soviet markings, it actually belongs to the Budge Collecti on in
Britain. It was in Israeli service for some time, as is evident from the added stowage rail s on the hull side.
A Syrian 9PI22 tank destroyer in camouflage
typical of the 1973 war: tan, dark green and medium
green. In thi s view, the launch rail s are elevated, but
the guidance sight i s not open.
Ordinarily, the launch rail s for the 9PI 22 are
carried in the hull recess in the center of the vehicle.
Thi s Syrian vehicle has an instrumentation package
on the roof, not a normal feature on this vehicle.
An overhead view of a Soviet BRDM·2 tank destroyer with a
full load of fi ve 9M 113 Konkurs missiles. Notice that this version
has a new electro-opti cal sight over the operator's hatch. Thi s sight
can be traversed through 180
0
which permits off·axi s launch of the
mi ssil es.
A close-up of the launch rack for the 9MI13 Konkurs (AT·5
Spandrel ) mi ssil e on the BRDM·2 tank destroyer. The 9M 113
Konkurs has superior range to the 9M' 'I Fagot. (Chri stopher Foss)
The latest tank destroyer version of the BRDM·2 mates the late
producti on BRDM·2 hull with the 9MIII Fagot (AT-4 Spigot) and
9MI13 Konkurs (AT·5 Spandrel) anti·tank missiles. The launchers
can be filled with ei ther type. Thi s Iraqi Army vehicle has two of
the 9M Ilion the right side, and three of the larger 9M 11 3 on the
left. (Chri stopher Foss)
Another view of the Iraqi BRDM-2 tank destroyer. In thi s view, the mi ss ile operator's guidance si te
is pointed forward and has the protective door in the open posit ion. (Christopher Foss)

... As in the case of the other members of the BROM·2 famil y,
the SA·9 Gaskin vehicle is full y amphibious. This parti cular view
is interesti ng in that it shows the vehicle fully equipped with the
~ H a t Box " passive electronic sensor antenna arrays. These small
boxes pick up the microwave emissions of jet attack aircraft,
thereby giving the crew some warning as to the likely direction of
attack .
...... The SA·9 Gaskin anti ·aircraft mi ssile vehicle is also mounted
on the BRDM·2 hull. It carri es four 9M31M Strela 1 mi ssiles on a
traversable launch array. The vehicle can carry up 10 six mi ssiles,
the other two being stowed on the side racks.
... An overhead view of the launcher array on the SA·9 Gaskin.
Thi s is an intermediate production BRDM·2 hull , wil h the slatted-
style covers aft the turret. The SA·9 Gaskin is being replaced by the
SA· 11 Gopher, but many remain in service around the world.
~ The BRDM vehicles are frequently used as chemical scout
vehicles. This is the original chemical scout vehi cle of the BRDM-2
family, designated BRDM-2Rkha. The -a version has the same
14.5mm machine gun as the normal BRDM-2 scout car.
""' ... A rear view of the BRDM-Rkh vehicle. The devices on the rear
are fl ag emplacers, used to fire warning flags into the ground. At
the base of the array is a small explosive squib which can be
detonated in sequence from within the vehicle. These are laid in
areas that are chemically or radi oactively contaminated. From the
markings, thi s vehicle belongs to the Polish 7th Lusatian Naval
Assault Divi sion.
... The BRDM-2Rkhb is the standard chemical scout vehicle of
the BROM-2 family. Unlike the -a model, it i s not fitted with the
normal 14.5mm heavy machine, only a single 7.62mm machine
gun in a reconfigured mounting. It also has improvements in the
internally carried sensors.
... A close-up view of the hull front of a BRDM·2Rkhb. The modified mantle!
has a small attachment which contains flare sti cks which launch · sound stars·
to mark the detection of a chemi cally contami nated zone.
T A Soviet chemi cal scout platoon during field maneuvers wi th a
BRDM·2Rkhb. There are 29 of these vehi cles in each Soviet motor rifl e
division, although some divisions are now receiving the improved RKhM
vehicle, based on the 2S1/MT·lBu tracked vehicle.
The most common varieties of BROM-2 command vehicles are turretless.
This command vehicle in Israeli service appears to have been a local conversion
of a normal turreted BROM-2, not a standard Soviet type. (Christopher Foss)
Thi s East German BROM-2U is a typical type of command vehicle of thi s
famil y. Aside from the lack of a turret, it is easily distingui shed by the two radi o
antenna fittings On the upper hull sides.
The BROM-2 is widely used as the basis for command and radio vehicles.
Thi s partially Polish version retains the normal turret, but has a less common
antenna fitting on the left hull side.
An overhead view of an East German BROM-2U command vehicle
showing the hatch layout. This is from the second production series of BROM-2s,
evident from the type of engine hatch covers.

The BTR-40 was developed immediately after the war to replace lend-
lease M3A 1 Scout Cars. The Soviets used it as a cross between a scout vehicle
and an armored transporter. This particular example is in Afghan service in the
1970s. Notice the continued use of World War 1 Austrian hel mets, suppl ied to
the Afghans in the 1930s by Czechoslovakia.
A BTR-40 currently preserved al the Poli sh Armed Forces Museum in
Warsaw. The original production models of the BTR-40 were open-topped, and
so often fiued with a canvas top during poor weather.
The BTR-40 was not entirely successful either as a seoul vehicle or as a
transporter. It was eventually replaced by the BROM-l in the scout role.
However, it continued to be used inlO the 19705 as a general purpose armored
vehicle.
Rear-view of a late-production BTR-40 showing the stowage racks fiued to
the hull rear. The vehicle had firing ports on Ihe hull sides to permit the troops
inside to fire from within the vehicle- a characteri sti c of most Soviet wheeled
armored vehicles.
A view of the driver' s compartment of the 8TR-40. Usually, the section
commander sat in the right seal.
A yjew 1 BTR-40, looking forward. Again, the bulk of
the stowage racks are configured for ammunition stowage.
An interior view of a BTR·40 looking forwards towards the driver' s station.
The racks to the left of the photo are for ammunition stowage.
A view towards
was four soldiers, but it could be more.
A view of the driver' s compartment of the 8TR-40. Usually, the section
commander sat in the right seal.
A yjew 1 BTR-40, looking forward. Again, the bulk of
the stowage racks are configured for ammunition stowage.
An interior view of a BTR·40 looking forwards towards the driver' s station.
The racks to the left of the photo are for ammunition stowage.
A view towards
was four soldiers, but it could be more.
An overhead view of a BTR·40 currently preserved in the Budge Collection
in Britain. This vehicle was ex·lsraeli (and originally Egyptian), hence the
uncharacteristic side stowage harnesses and Browning M2 machine gun.
The BTR·40A was a fire-support version of the BTR-40 series, armed with
a twin 14.Smm heavy machine gun mounting. Often mistakenly described as an
anti·aircraft vehicle, in fact it was intended to provide both air defense and
ground fire support for scout units. Thi s vehicle was used in combat by the Pathet
lao during the fighting in Indochina in the 19605.
With the advent of the BRDM·2, the East German NVA converted a number
of their obsolete BTR·40 vehi cles to tank destroyers, using the 9M 14M Malyutka
(AT·3 Sagger) missile.
The BTR·152 was the first post·war Soviet armored infantry transporter,
entering service in 1950. It was basically a ZiS- I SI truck with an armored body.
It can be distinguished from later models by the standard truck wheel hub.
.... .
_ . _ .... _ .. ' 4. - ~ · 4 " " " ' · "
*- ... ... ;..,.
..' _ J'...c.
-
... . "
-
.. ..
..... The BTR· 152V was the first version of the BTR· 152 family to
have a tire-pressure regulati on system. Thi s all owed the driver to
reduce the tire pressure in soft ground or snow to improve traction
and fl oatation. Thi s is a BTR-152V of the Egyptian Army,
abandoned in the Sinai during the 1967 war with Israel .
... A Soviet motor rifle company on maneuvers in the 1960s. In
1956-57, the Soviet Army began to mechani ze its rifl e divisions,
whi ch were then deSignated motor ri fl e divi sions. These
BTR-152V2s were the principal armored transporters in the motor
rifl e regiments until the advent of the BTR-60 famil y in the 1960s .
..... T A BTR· 152Vl of the Afghan Army in the late 1970's before the
Soviet invasion. It is armed with a 12.7mm DShk heavy machine
gun on a tripod mount. The BTR-152Vl was a moderni zed
BTR-152 usi ng an i mproved internal tire pressure regulation system
whi ch didn' t need the external hoses of the BTR-152V. The
BTR-1 52 and BTR. 152V were later fitted with thi s system,
becoming the BTR· 152V2 and BTR-152V3 respecti vely.
" .
.... A pair of BTR- 1 S2V1 armored transporters of the Syrian in the
typical camoufl age pattern of the 1973 war, sand over the normal
Soviet dark green. The BTR-152 could be armed with a variety of
weapons, a 7.62mm SMGB was a common selection .
....... An interior view of the BTR- 1S2Vl, looking forward towards
the driver's station. Usually the section commander sat in the right
seal.
... An overhead shot looking into the rear compartment of a
BTR-t S2Vl. Notice that there are four different sockets around the
fighti ng compartment where machine guns can be fitted. This
vehicle is currently preserved i n the Budge Collection i(l Bri tai n.
·<IfIII An overhead view looking into the troop compartment of a BTR·152Vl.
Thi s vehicle could carry a full infantry section of 17 soldiers, plus the two man
crew .
...... A view of the left side of the BTR· 152VI fighting comp..lnmenl.
• A view of the ri ght si de of the BTR· 152VI fighting compartment.
<lflii A closeup of an East German BTR·1 52Vl showing the modified wheel hub
of Ihe ·VI variant. Notice the pol for the radio antenna. The antenna is not
attached in this view.
<Ill A view of the driving compartment of the BTR· 152V. The
device in the center behind the gear levers is the tire pressure
adjustment knobs. The equipme"t in front of the right seat is the
vehi cle's radio transceiver/receiver.
<Ill T In the 1960s, some BTR· 152Vls were rebuilt with full
armored protection as the BTR-152K like this East German pair.
Although thi s provided additional cover for the infantry section, it
taxed an already overloaded chassis.
... As more STR·6Os became available in the 19705, many of the
BTR· 152Ks were retired from frontline motor rifl e service, and
converted into ambulances, like thi s East German example.
A BTR-40 and BTR- 152VI currentl y preserved at the Poli sh Armed Forces
Museum, in Warsaw.
A Syrian BRDM-2 scout vehi cle knocked out during the fighting on the Golan
Heights in the 1973 war. It is in the camouflage typical of thi s war.
A Syrian Army BTR-1 52VI armored transporter near Saida, Lebanon in
March 1978 following the Syrian intervention to interrupt the Lebanese civil war.
The Arabic number on the hull side is ~ 1 3 5 8 ~ . The BTR- 152, al though obsolete
in the Warsaw Pact at thi s time, was still in widespread use by Soviet client
states.
A Syrian 9P122 tank destroyer knocked out by Israeli forces in the fighting
on the Golan Heights in 1973. The missile launcher rack is elevated, and noti ce
that the combat missiles are painted olive drab, not silver. The si lver mi ssiles are
peacetime practice mi ssiles.
A BTR·60PB infantry transporter of the Finni sh Army. (Yves Oebay)
BTR·60PB infantry transporters of the Finnish Army. (Yves Oebay)

A Syri an BTR-60PU command vehi cle knocked Qut on the Golan Heights in
the 1973 war. This is a somewhat unusual command version, having addi ti onal
radios, but not the usual elevating antennas.

Another view of a pai r of BTR-GOPB knocked out near Sal inas airfield during
the fighting on Grenada in 1983.
A pair of STR-GOPBs of the Calvigny Mechanized Platoon, knocked out near
the Salinas airfi eld by the 82nd Ai rborne Division during fighting on Grenada
in 1983 .
A 8TR-60PU command vehicle of the Finni sh Army during TUISKU 87. (Yves
Debay)
;:;;;;;;;;;;;;;, v.!hIeles were mao,ufactured
under the designations STR·IS2B, BTR·1521 and BTR· 152S. This particular
vehicle is marked with red bands wi th whi le !tim, the significance of which is
nol certain.
One of the more unusual conversion of the BTR-152 series is thi s Sudanese
combination of an American M167Al Vulcan 20mm anti-aircraft gun on a
BTR·152Vl chassis. The Sudanese Army had hoped to purchase the tracked
M 163 VADS in 1980, but when thi s fell through, they bought the less expensive
towed version instead and insta ll ed it themselves on old BTR-152 chassis.
The BTR·152Vl remained in front-line service with the Afghan Army well
into the 19605. This particular example was captured by the mujahideen in the
late 1980s. II is unusual in that it is filled wi th a Czechoslovak M53 quad
12.7mm DShK heavy machine gun mount for convoy securi ty duty. (David Isby)
Wi th the advent of the much improved BTR·60, many older BTR· 152s were
configured for support roles. Thi s BTR· 152Vl is fitted wi th a rack for holding 120
mines. It was captured from a Syrian engineer unit in the 1973 war with Israel.
... The STR·60P was the first member of the widely used STR-60 family. It
entered production in 1960. It was the only version of the family to be open·
topped; subsequent models were fully armored. The standard armament as seen
here was a 12.7mm DShK heavy machine gun and two 7.62mm SGMS machine
guns.
<III The STR-60P was retired from frontline Soviet service rather quickly, but
remained in use into the early 19705 with the Soviet Naval Infantry as seen here
during the Yug wargames in June 1971. The camoufl age on these vehicles was
sand over standard Soviet dark green. The 7.62mm SGMS machine gun
mounting was standard for Soviet light armored vehicles.
The BTR· 60P was foll owed by the BTR·60PA in 1963. This version was
full y armored and can be di stingui shed by the lack of side doors as found in the
BTR·60P.
A side view of a BTR·60PA. The mai n probl em with the BTR·60PA was thai
troop access was very diffi cult and the external machine guns were compl etely
unprotected from enemy fi re.
A rear, overhead view of the BTR·60PA. This vehicle was not part icul arly
successful and was in prooudion for onl y one year before replaced by the
BTR·60PB.
• ... Although the BTR-60PA was not popular in the Soviet Army, some of the
vehicles were turned over to the KGB's Border Guards who used them into the
19705 for patrol duty in Central Asia and on the Chi nese border.
... The STR-60PB entered producti on in 1964 and was the most successful
version of the BTR·60 fami ly. It used a new lurret with 14.Smm KPVT heavy
machine gun. It also had side hatches added to make it easier for the squad to
exi t, though this was by no means as easy as in comparable NATO vehicles of
the lime like the Ameri can M 11 3 .
...... An upper rear view of the BTR-60PB in the original version. Note that on
earl y production vehicles, the roof is entirely flat. On late production vehi cles,
a periscope was fitted to the roof.
BTR«lPB CrOh-MClIon
I.DfMng control.
2.1nfrared MIIrchllghl
3. 14.5mm KPVT heavy machine goo
4.MlIn tUfTet
S.FIring portJ
6.ExIt hatch
7.0bsEHvation port lor rIIIa squad
a.Alr titration 'y8tam
9.Englnel
10.Hydrojet
II .SUlpenalon toralon bar
12.Shock ablorber
13.Clutch
1 • . Gearbox
IS.TranImItsIon assembly
IS.OIIferentlai
17'wlnch
IS.Water deflector ICreen
The BTR·60PB has been widely exported. Amongst the users was the
Imperial Iranian Army in the 1970's as seen here. The color scheme was an
overall sand with the nalional roundel in green, white and red.
Thi s Iranian BTR-60PB was captured duri ng the
war with Iraq in the early 1980s. Both sides used the
BTR-60PB.
• •
• •
". "-

-
.. ....
4 •• .;..

."
.
.
-----_.-
An Afghan STR-60PB in the late 1970s before
the Soviet invasion. The BTR-60PB was probably the
most common armored vehicle of the Afghan War,
large numbers of Soviet and Afghan vehicles being
lost in roadside ambushes.
.. An Afghan Army BTR·60PB captured by the
mujihadeen in the late 1980s. The main weakness of
the BTR·60PB was its thin side armor whi ch was
vul nerable to close-quarter ambush, even with small
arms .
...... Thi s rear end view of an Iranian BTR· 60PB
shows the rear water jet open. Thi s system draws in
water from underneath the vehicl e, and expells it
through thi s port for propulsion in water.
.... An East German BTR·60PB. Thi s is a late
production vehicle with the periscope added on the
turret roof.
... The BTR·60PB was not popular in the Warsaw Pact and both
Czechoslovakia and Poland use the OT·64 SKOT instead. However, it is the
standard infantry vehicle for other armi es, such as Bulgaria as seen here.
<IIiI The BTR·60PB was widely used in the Angolan war, thi s particular example
being knocked out by the UNIT A resistance in 1988 during fighting wi th
Angolan and Cuban forces.
A Naval Infantry BTR-60PB command vehicle comes ashore
during Soviet naval exercises. Thi s parti cular vehicle has added
antennas and an additional generator. The white markings often
signify aggressor forces during Warsaw Pact wargames.
The BTR-60PB was used by the Soviet Naval Infantry as well
as the Ground Forces. These two BTR-GOPBs are coming ashore
from landing shi ps during exercises. Naval Infantry armored
vehicles often carry the Soviet naval ensign painted on their sides,
in this case, on the si de of the turret.
• ... During the fighting on Grenada in October 1983, the People's
Revolutionary Army of Grenada had two motor rifle platoons, each with four
STR-60PB and a 8ROM-2. The Calvigny Infantry 8aualion's platoon was led by
a Cuban officer, Capt. Sergio Grandales-Nolasco, who was killed when the unit
attacked the US Ranger positions near the Salinas airport. This is one of the
STR·60PBs of this unit. (000)
Y Another view of a STR-60PB of the Calviny Infantry Batlalion knocked out
in the fighting near the Salinas airport during the fighting on Grenada in 1983.
(000)
III" This appears to be one of the BTR-60PBs of the
molor rifle platoon of the St. George's Infantry
Batlalion whi ch laid siege to a Navy SEAL team at the
Government House. These were eventuall y knocked
out with LAWs or by airstrikes. (000)
'Y A late-production BTR-60PB of the East German
NVA. The panel under the bow of the vehicl e is the
water deflector screen, used when the vehicle is
swimming.
'YII'- An East German BTR-60PB. The adoption of the
BTR-60PB marked a reduction in the size of the
standard Warsaw Pacl rifle squad, from the 17
soldiers typi cal in the 1950s to 8 soldi ers in the
1960s.
An overhead view of a Finni sh BTR·60PB which clearly shows
the hatch arrangement of the vehicle. There are two hatches for the
crew at the front of the vehicle, and two rectangular hatches in the
middle of the roof for the rifle squad. (Kalevi Moi lanen)
An interesting night shot of an East German BTR·60PB which
shows some detail s of the BTR·60PB' s suspension.
A Syrian BTR·60PB in the standard scheme of the 1973 war:
medium green, sand and dark green. The BTR-60PB was the
standard infantry vehicle of the Syrian Army in the 1973 war.
----
A view looking up inlO the turret of a STR·60PB. The turret is actually 100
small for the gunner 10 sit inside it. Rather, he sits below ii, with only his head
inside the turrel.
A view from the rear of the STR·60PB looking forward. In Ihi s view, many
of the seals are mi ssi ng.
A view of the driver's station in the STR·60PB. To the right is the gunner's
seal for the 14.5mm KPVT turrel.
A closeup of the exi t duel for the hydrojet system on the STR-60PB.

... The BTR-60PB is li cense manufactured in
Romania as the T AS-n. It has a number of small
changes, most noticeably to the turret.
... A close-up of the turret of a Romanian T AB-72,
showing the modified sighting system on the
Romani an vehicles.
.. A column of Romanian T AB-72s on parade in
the late 19705. In the late 1980's, the Romanian Army
switched from the star i nsignia over to a roundel in
the national colors of blue, yellow and red.
... The BTR-60 forms the basis for many different types of Soviet
communications and command vehicles, generically designated BTR-60PU. The
most common type has a antenna running around the left side of
the vehicle, and a tel escoping Hawk Eye antenna on the roof. Thi s is a Finni sh
BTR-60PB.
.. An East German signal s unit preparing the Hawk Eye antenna for erection.
Note that the BTR-60PU in the background has already set up its antenna.
An East German NVA BTR-60PU with the Hawk Eye antenna folded and
enclosed in a canvas protective cover.


A 8TR-60PB under a standard camouflage net, and its antenna in the fully
extended position.
Thi s is a BTR-60PU-12 of a Cuban air defense unit knocked out by UNIT A
guerill as during the fighting in Angola i n 1988. II does not have the usual
clothesline antenna, but the Hawk Eye antenna mounting is evident on the roof.
A frontal view of another Cuban BTR-60PU- 12 knocked out by UNIT A i n
Angola in 1988. One of the disti ngui shing features of the command vehicles are
ai r vent covers and antenna mountings on the hull side, not found on the normal
8TR-60PB troop transporter.
,
... The lV19 armored command and recon-
nai ssance vehicle is used by Soviet towed artillery
units in place of the tracked IV12/MT·lBu vehicle
used by self-propell ed arti ll ery units. It uses a different
turret than the standard STR·60PB, with special night
sights and observation devi ces under armored covers.
It is also fitted with a laser rangefinder.
... In the late 19705, the 8TR-60PB was replaced on
the assembly lines by the BTR-70. Although similar in
general outline to the BTR-60PB, the BTR-70 has a
number of iml>ortant changes. It substituted di esel
engines for gasoline engines, and has improved troop
exi t hatches, between the second and third wheels on
either side.
In thi s view of an East German BTR·60PU, the Hawk Eye antenna i s partly
extended. These vehicles are widely used by Ihe headquarters of mOlor rifle and
lank regiments.

... A view of the driver's station in the BTR·70. This is an Easl
German vehicle, as is evident from the driver's uniform.
.. A close-up of the driver' s station in the BTR-70. When in
combat, the front hatches are shut and the driver uses the
periscopes instead.
... As in the case of the STR-60PS, the BTR-70 has a hydrojet system for
propulsion in water. The BTR-70 is squatter and beller proportioned than the
STR-60PS, though armor protection is essentially similar. Thi s is from the later
production batches, evident from the bumpers fitted on the upper hull corners.
... A platoon of East German STR-70s in operation. The East German Army is
the only Warsaw Pact force to use the STR-lO in any significant numbers.
Romania has begun the license production of a modified type.
1 2 3 4
15
A view of the front compartment of the BTR-70 showing the
driver's stati on and the right seat for the squad commander.
5 6
14 13 12
7 8
11 10
BTR-70 Crou-•• ctlon
I .Steerlng wheel
2.lnfrared searchlight
3.14.5mm KPVT heavy machine gun
4.Maln turret
5.Perlscopes
6.Squad exit hatches
7.Englnes
8.Radlator jventlator assembly
9.Hydrojet
10.CUlch
It .Gearbox
12.Suspenslon torsion bar
13.Shock absort>er
1 • . Transmlsslon assembly
IS.Differentlal
iii> An East German STR-70 during summer maneuvers. The use
of flag signal s in the Warsaw Pact is common, to l imit the amount
of radio traffi c for security reasons. Thi s parti cular vehicle is
camouflaged by blothches of mud applied in the field by its troops.
iii> T During the Afghan War. Soviet troops often added an AGS-l 7
Plamya grenade launcher on the roof of the STR-70' s turret for
added firepower. Thi s photo reveals one of the problems wi th the
BTR-70 in the hot climes of Afghanistan: the tendency of the engine
to overheat. As a result. the rear engine grill s were often left open .
..-<41 A rear view of a Soviet BTR-70. The original production
versions of the BTR-70 did not have the type of bumpers filled on
later vehicl es.
<III A view of the interior of the BTR-70, showing the gunner. The
large wheel is for turret traverse. Traverse on the turret is entirely
manual, but is not difficult with one arm.
.. An overhead view of an East German BTR-70
with its section disembarking. On the BTR-70, most of
the squad exits from the side rather than the
vulnerable roof hatches .
...... A Soviet BTR-70 during the fighting in
Afghanistan. On the turret roof is a spare tire. Typical
of the use of BTRs there, the engine hatches are left
open for beller engine cooling. (David Isby)
.... An overhead view of a BTR-70. The distinctive
armored covers over the engine are very evident in
this view.

.... A bow view of the STR·70. It is easy 10 distinguish from the
BTR-60PB by it s sharper angles, and the location of the swi m
deflector plate on the top of the bow rather than underneath. Tile
small hatch on the undersi de of the bow provides access to a power
operated winch.
A In the early 19805. the BTR-70 began to be replaced by the
STR-BO. The STR-70 and STR-80 are very simil ar in appearance
from the front. The main changes are in the engi ne area. This i s a
Soviet STR-BO during the pull-out from Afghanistan in 1988.
(SoVfOl0)
.. Another STR-BO during the Afghan withdrawal. One of the
easiest ways 10 distingui sh the STR-70 from the -80 is the distinctive
shape of the gun ports on the side of the hull . (Sovfoto)
STR·80s escort a convoy in Afghanistan. The lead vehicle is a STR·80MS
radio vehicle with clothes-line antennas. The STR·70 and STR·80 were widely
used in convoy escort duties as, unlike tracked vehicles, they could keep up with
the trucks.
A camouflaged STR·80 during trials at the Kubinka Proving Grounds
outside Moscow. Soviet vehicl es are starting to use camouflage painting more
frequently than in the past, but so far with little regulation.
This overhead view of a STR·80 shows the distinctive features of the new
model. The most important changes are in the rear hull configuration, which is
higher than on the STR·70. Note also that the STR·80 has the late style turret with
smoke mortars and the high elevation gun mantle!.
-----....,
Beginning in 1988, the Soviet Naval Infantry began to reequip with the
STR·80 in place of the older BTR·60PS.

..... Thi s front view of a STR·80 shows several of the characteristic
detail s. The turret on the STR·80 uses a new trunnion mounting
which gives greater elevation for firing al enemy helicopters. As a
result, the sighting assembly is different than on the earlier turret s.
Some very late production STR·70s had thi s turret, but without the
rear smoke mortar array.
.... A close-up view showing detail s of the rear engine deck of the
BTR·BO. The STR·BO uses a single diesel engine instead of the
awkward twin engines of the BTR-60 and STR·7Q families.
... A close-up of the turret of a BTR-aO. Thi s view clearly shows
the roof mounted periscope found on turret s of Soviet STRs since
the late producti on BTR· 60PBs. The insignia is the traditional
Guards emblem.
... The rear turret of the BTR-80 is fiued with a smoke grenade
mortar array. Thi s view also gives a clear display of the special
socket mounts for the squad automatic rifles. These repl aced very
simpl e firing ports on the BTR-lO .
• 111> A close-up rear view of the BTR-aO. This vehicle can be
distinguished from the BTR-lO by the rear roof profile. which is
horizontal. rather than angled.
... A view of the rear of a BTR-ao. This vehicle has a hydrojet
system essenti all y si milar to the BTR-lO.
... Thi s closeup view of the STR-80 shows the smoke grenade
launchers on the turret rear and the machine gun guard which
prevents the turret machine guns from depressi ng far enough to hit
the rear of the vehicle .
...... A front view of the BTR-BO. This view clearly shows the
revised optical sight near the 14.5mm KPVT machine gun. This
turret, minus the smoke grenades, has also been used on late
production BROM-2s.
.... A frontal view of the BTR-80. The firing ports on the side of
the BTR-80 have been repositioned to facilitate firing the weapons
at targets towards the front of the vehicle.
The roof hatches of the BTR-80 are differently configured than
on the BTR-70. Although the squad can exit through these hatches,
as often as not, they use the more convenient hatches in the lower
hull.
A detail view over the rear end of the vehicle showing the
muffler exhaust covers and the armored doors over the rear engine
compartment.
The roof over the rear troop compartment is slightly humped
to give the troops slightly better head room. However, the STR-80
is very cramped inside.
A closeup of the engine covers on the BTR-80. These oval
covers al low air in, but are confi gured to prevent the seepage of
gasoline from Molotov cocktail s into the engine compartment.
1:35 MOdern AFV Series
Aiming lor Perfection. TOday's mOdern armored lighting vehicles mOdeled in sUperb detail.
Highty accurate, With the tatest in W8apo"s and equipment. Each vehicle has been thoroughly
researched by some of fhe world's leading authorities.
3506 T-aJ
"Steps Ahead ... Always'"

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful