Armor: Sherp The Unstoppable

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March 4, 2016: A Russian firm has developed a new ATV (All-Terrain Vehicle) design apparently intended for the most extreme terrain. Called the Sherp, it costs $65,000 and is amphibious and able to handle swamps, snow, sand, ice and just about any type of terrain. Sherp is 3.4 meters long, 2.52 meters wide and 2.3 meters high. It moves on four 1.6 meter self-inflating tires. The vehicle weighs 1.3 tons and has a top speed of 45 kilometers an hour on land and six kilometers an hour in water. Carrying capacity is one ton and it seats up to four plus cargo. The vehicle has an electricity generator and carries 258 liters (62 gallons) of diesel for its 44 horsepower engine. Sherp is built for extremes of terrain, which describes much of northern Russia. Most Western ATVs are more specialized.

For example in 2015 Chinese airborne and light infantry units began receiving a locally made amphibious ATV. This is an 8x8 vehicle apparently based on the Canadian Argo design, which has been around since the 1960s and has been regularly upgraded, refined, improved and extensively used all over the world. The Chinese ATV can carry six people (including the driver), weighs 1.7 tons and has a max payload of about a ton. If used amphibiously the ATV can only carry about a third of a ton. Max road speed is 60 kilometers an hour. The ATV is 3.9 meters (12.7 feet) long and 1.8 meters (5.9 feet) wide. The Chinese military has several thousand of these vehicles, many (if not most) of them with non-combat units.

Western manufacturers have built hundreds of different ATV models, a growing number of them modified for military use.

 


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