Top 10 Armored Vehicles of World War II
Top 10 Armored Vehicles of World War II

Top 10 Armored Vehicles of World War II

Maria - June 15, 2016

The beauty of creativity is that it can yield all things spectacular, which often goes for beauty. In the context of war, you have the license to push your creativity to its limits and come up with something useful.

On the darker side, “spectacular” can be subjective. It can be more of creepy than it is graceful. These ten WWII armored oddballs are proof of just how far south creativity can go for the sake of uniqueness, which often equals power in the context of war.

10. The Fox Armored Car

Top 10 Armored Vehicles of World War II

The Fox was a four-wheeled armored combat vehicle manufactured during WWII by Canada’s General Motors. It was designed based on the Mk III, a British Humber Armored Car. The Fox was however adapted to a design befitting the Canadian Military Pattern, CMP truck chassis.

The armored car could accommodate four men inside. These included its commander, a gunner, wireless operator and the driver. About 1,506 of the armored cars were manufactured.

The Fox Armored Car was used in operations in various countries including the Italy, the UK and India during World War II. The Polish 15th Pułk Ułanów Poznańskich unit relied extensively on this car while they fought in Italy.

The Netherlands also used it when they ran short of the Humber armored cars supply. The country had about 39 of the Fox Armored Cars. Out of these, 34 were hybrids called Humfox. These were fitted with Humber Mk. IV turrets and were very popular. The collection was eventually passed on to Indonesia after The Netherlands gained its independence.

The Fox did not end with the end of WWII. And as soon the 2nd World War was over, the fleet went to the Portuguese Army, who eventually used them in Angola, Mozambique, and Guinea for their counterinsurgency measures between 1961 and 1975.

9. The Rhino

Top 10 Armored Vehicles of World War II


The Rhino, also referred to as The Rhino Heavy Armored Car, was developed by the Australian government in 1941 partly as a result of the UK’s failure to meet the Commonwealth demands set out to regulate the supply of armored combat vehicles.

It was fitted with an armored hull approximately 30 millimeters thick to the front, and 11 millimeters thick to the sides and the rear.

All sides had a thirty-millimeter cap and a turret finish. It was armed with a 40 mm two-pound gun and a 7.7-mm Vickers machine gun.

The Rhino project was scraped out in 1943 due to its excess weight and after it suffered from the actions of the enemies. It therefore never went past its prototype stage.

8. The Ironside

Top 10 Armored Vehicles of World War II

Many names refer to the Ironside. You’ll meet it by the name of the Humber Light Reconnaissance Car or Humber LRC Mk IIIA. A more common name, however, is Ironside or the Humberette.

From 1940 to 1943, the period of the Second World War, well over 3000 units of this British military vehicle were produced. Its design was based on the 4×4 Humber Heavy Utility car and the Humber Super Snipe chassis. This vehicular oddity was built by Humber. It was employed by the RAF and the Infantry Reconnaissance Regiments and was equipped with the No. 19 radio set.

The Ironside was used widely in Western Europe, Italy, and Tunisia. Three of these vehicle units were later converted to be used by the British Royal Family and a few cabinet members. These were the popular Special Ironside Saloons.

7. The Otter

Top 10 Armored Vehicles of World War II

The Otter Light Reconnaissance Car, or simply the Otter was a light armored car built by General Motors Canada for use by the British and other Commonwealth troops in WWII. Its design was based on the Chevrolet C15 Canadian Military Pattern truck chassis. This armored unit utilized a lot of the components typical of GM.

Compared to the Humber, the Otter was a more powerful armored military vehicle. Its overall performance was, however, lesser since it weighed more than the former. This oddball was fitted with a Bren light machine gun placed in a tiny open-topped turret and a hull-mounted Boys anti-tank rifle.

Even though fewer than 1,000 Otter units were delivered overseas, 1761 units were produced in Oshawa, Ontario between 1942 and 1945. Used by the Canadian units in the Italian Campaign and Northwest European operations, the Otter was also employed by the British RAF Regiment and the South African Army. After the war, the Jordanian Army and Dutch Army used these vehicles during the Indonesian Revolution.

6. The Beaverette

Top 10 Armored Vehicles of World War II

The very first version of this Light Standard armored car was released in 1940. Its construction was the handiwork of the Standard Motor Company at the behest of Lord Beaverbrook. The company ceased its production after manufacturing an estimated 2,800 units in 1942. The car was mainly used for home defense service and training by the British Army and the Royal Air Force. The Beaverette was extremely heavy, which made it difficult for the soldiers to maneuver.

There were various series of the Beaverette with the first (Mark I) given light armored panels on the sides of the engine hood and three large steel plates welded to the chassis, covering the front and sides of the driving compartment. The second series was entirely different. Its construction was altered hence only featured five plates covering the front, sides, a split roof, and rear. New armored panels completely covered its engine hood, and the curved wings were eliminated.

During world war military plan, the Beaverette were too heavy for their chassis and suffered from suspension and mechanical fatigue. Even though their production was stopped in 1942, about 2,800 units were already delivered.

5. Bobik

Top 10 Armored Vehicles of World War II

Many sources often quote 9,000 as the number of Bobiks that were made. This is however contradicted by other sources that offer a different figure. Nonetheless, the Bobik was a lightly-armored four-wheeled scout car by the Soviet Forces. Russian Army used it between 1942 and the 1960s for reconnaissance missions and liaison. Bobik was used both in the Second World War and the Korean War.

Equivalent to the American Jeep, the construction of the BA-64 was an initiative of GAZ chief designer V. A. Grachev. Design work started on July 17, 1941. While the first prototype of this small, light armored car was tested on January 9, 1942, and its hull had similarities with the sdkfz-234 basic shape. The vehicle was operated by a crew of two and had an open roof, not forgetting the pintle-mounted 7.62mm DT machine gun.

4. The Csaba

Top 10 Armored Vehicles of World War II

The Csaba was named after Attila the Hun’s son and was built to be used by the Royal Hungarian Army during World War 2.The armored scout car was designed by Nicholas Straussler, a Hungarian expatriate. He made several vehicles, but the Csaba was his most prominent design.

At the request of the Hungarian Army, a total of 101 Csaba units were produced. 20 of them were used in actual warfare while the rest remained to be used for reconnaissance purposes and as armored command vehicles.

The Csaba featured a turret that was armed with 9 mm armored plating, 20 mm cannon, and an 8 mm machine gun. Even though the operational range of the vehicle was limited to around 150 kilometers, it had a 90 hp Ford engine that could propel it at a speed of up to sixty-five km/h. Interestingly, the Csaba also had two driving positions – one at the front as normal, and an additional one at the rear.

3. The Scout Car S1

Top 10 Armored Vehicles of World War II

Ford Australia manufactured the Scout Car S1 upon the request of the United States Army Air Force [USAAF]. It was to be used in 1942 by the US Army during WWII. The Scout Car S1 was a light armored car used for airfield patrolling and defense. Only 40 units of these cars were ever made. Each unit featured a .50 cal. machine gun, two .30-inch machine guns on its skate rails and could carry up to 5 crew members.

With its open-topped armored hull similar to that of the M3 Scout Car, the Scout Car S1 was based on a Ford of Canada CMP F15A 4×4 and 4×2 chassis, onto which was bolted an armored superstructure

2. The T27 Armored Tank

Top 10 Armored Vehicles of World War II


T27 was an enormous eight-wheeled armored tank developed in 1944 by the Studebaker Corporation for the US Army. Its production did not, however, go past the prototype. It was canceled in the favor of a competing design by Chevrolet.

Intended to replace the M8 Greyhound, the T27 Armored Car was armed with two .30 caliber machine guns and a 37 mm cannon and wad also powered by a Cadillac gasoline eight-cylinder engine. It could accommodate a crew of four.

After its completion in late 1943, this prototype armored car developed for the US Army was taken to the Aberdeen Proving Grounds in 1944 for testing against the T28 Armored Car. T28 was found out to be more mobile than the T27. However, they both proved their superiority to the mobility of the M8.

1. The C15TA Armored Truck

Top 10 Armored Vehicles of World War II

General Motors Canada built this armored vehicle based on the Otter design. It was intended to be used for ferrying loads during WWII. It was used further after the war by countries such as Denmark, Belgium, Norway, the Netherlands, the French, Spain, Portugal, the Federation of Malaya and South Africa.

With a six-cylinder GMC engine that could propel it at a speed of up to 65 km/h, the C15TA performed exceptionally well in its assigned function. Also, this comparatively huge truck had a leaf spring suspension system and armor thickness ranging from 6 mm-14mm.

The C15TA eventually replaced the American half-tracks and White Scout Cars in Canadian service. Sources reveal that a total of 3,961 C15TA were produced, with most being sent overseas. During the war, they were mostly used as armored personnel carrier and ambulance