• Hi Guest! Forum rules have been updated. All users please read here.

Italian prototypes and never built

MANTUS

ACCESS: Restricted
Joined
Nov 5, 2009
Messages
21
Reaction score
3
I will start to report news on Italian prototypes, that although numerous, appear to be little known

We start from the family of vehicles OF-40

The OF40 is a tank that was produced in small quantities for export markets, from its platform, however, were derived means very interesting:

OF-40 Mk2/120

15mmcuw.jpg


The OF-40/120 Mk 2A MBT is of conventional design with the driver's compartment at the front, fighting compartment in the centre and power pack at the rear. The hull and turret are of all-welded steel construction with the turret front being well sloped to provide the maximum possible ballistic protection.

The driver is seated at the front of the vehicle on the right side and has a single-piece hatch cover above his position and three periscopes for forward observation, the centre one of which can be replaced by an image intensification periscope for driving at night.

The loader is seated on the left of the turret, and has a single-piece hatch cover, with the commander being seated on the right and the gunner forward and below the tank commander. The commander has a single-piece hatch cover, a stabilised day/night image intensification roof-mounted sight and periscopes for all-round observation. He also operates the roof-mounted 7.62 mm machine gun.

The gunner's day/night sights are mounted in the forward part of the turret roof and are stabilised and incorporate a laser rangefinder.

The computerised fire-control system is fitted as standard and this processes the information from the laser rangefinder, type of ammunition for the engagement and other sensors.

Main armament comprises a 120 mm smoothbore gun which is stabilised in both elevation and traverse and is fitted with a thermal sleeve, muzzle reference system and a fume extractor. This gun fires standard 120 mm ammunition fired by the Leopard 2, M1A1/M1A2 Abrams and the Leclerc MBTs with an ammunition resupply hatch provided in the left side of the turret.

A 7.62 mm machine gun is mounted coaxially with the main armament and a bank of four electrically operated smoke grenade dischargers is mounted either side of the turret firing forwards.

The complete power pack, consisting of the V-10 supercharged diesel developing 1,000 hp, fully automatic transmission and cooling system, can be removed from the vehicle in 40 minutes using a crane and a four-man squad.

The fully automatic electrohydraulic transmission and steering system has four forward and two reverse gears and can be operated at full torque.

The cooling system is water operated and consists of two radiators, forced air cooled with thermostatically controlled fans designed for desert conditions. To reduce the infrared signature of the MBT, cooling air is mixed with the exhaust gases and discharged either side of the hull at the rear.

Suspension is of the torsion bar type with each side having seven dual rubber-tyred roadwheels with the drive sprocket at the rear, idler at the front and track-return rollers; the upper part of the suspension is covered by a rubber skirt.

Standard equipment includes an NBC system and the vehicle can ford to a depth of 2.25 m with a very short period of preparation and an optional kit enables the vehicle to ford to a depth of 4 m.

http://www.army-guide.com/eng/product4412.html
 

Jemiba

ACCESS: Above Top Secret
Staff member
Top Contributor
Senior Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2006
Messages
8,269
Reaction score
1,107
"with the turret front being well sloped to provide the maximum possible ballistic protection"

Just for curiosity,the backwards sloped lower part of the turret front reminds me on discussions
about the German WW II "Königstiger" (King Tiger or Bengal Tiger, just not to open this discussion
here again !) with the Porsche turret, where the roller like gun mount was regarded as a "bullet trap".
Here it's the whole turret front ! Isn't this a point today anymore ?
 
C

CostasTT

Guest
It would be an issue with solid armor plate, but since modern tanks have layered armor, the outer plates merely serve to slow KE projectiles down sufficiently for the inner layers to stop them. It's the simplest explanation I can come up with.
 

DanielStarseer

ACCESS: Confidential
Joined
Jan 18, 2010
Messages
59
Reaction score
15
I've had similar discussions elsewhere: seems that some circles today have the concesus that new armor types and "newest and best" committee design mentalities overrule any thought of ballistic shaping.

There is an abundance of AFV types out there in-service today that, in looking at their outward appearance, it seems the engineers never studied AFV development, in particular so much of what was learned about armor in WW2 (that shaping is highly favorable, and shot traps are not).

Even tall, slab-sided vehicles have their uses today (look at the various MRAP types),
but no worries there when we can just surround them in an armored birdcage. :D

Today it seems the ideology is that, rather than design for deflecting an incoming projectile,
we'd rather design additional extra weight of armor types (ERA, applique laminates, skirts, cages, etc) to absorb impacts,
or cause pre-detonations at stand-off distances so shaped-charge jets lose a lot of energy before reaching the main armor.
At some point, technology can/will make active systems commonplace (like Trophy)
for defense against singular large projectiles (ATGMs, tank main gun rounds),
but rapid-firing autocannon could still get through these systems with burst fire,
and that's where ballistic shaping still plays an important role.
 

lastdingo

Blogger http://defense-and-freedom.blogspot.de/
Joined
Oct 18, 2008
Messages
586
Reaction score
26
Website
defense-and-freedom.blogspot.de
Sloping was good in WW2 primarily because some shells ricocheted that would otherwise have penetrated or at least produced spall on the inside.

Modern projectiles don't ricochet any more.
HEAT (shaped charge) explodes on the surface and propels a non-ricocheting metal penetrator (solid, but behaving like a fluid) through the armour. This does not ricochet either.
Subcalibre projectiles (APFSDS, APDS) don't ricochet either; they're too fast, the contact are is tiny and the whole mechanism is closer to a plasma cutter than to WW2 APCBC projectiles.

HEAT fuses typically work even at extreme angles (70° off axis), sloping doesn't help here either.

Sloping increases the thickness of a plate in the path of the projectile (45° ~ x1.5, 60° ~ x2), but this comes at a cost in regard to volume. Sloped surfaces make still sometimes sense, but not always.

The composite armours ("Chobham", "Burlington" etc) use something like sloped armour inside in their composite in order to break the penetrator or to widen a shaped charge's penetration tunnel. It doesn't take a sloped outside for this effect.



------------------

Btw, I remember that the Italians built a new prototype with the 76 mm automatic gun, a kind of SPAAG - not the old OTOMATIC beast with the huge naval turret. Does anybody have info on this? I forgot my source.
 

MANTUS

ACCESS: Restricted
Joined
Nov 5, 2009
Messages
21
Reaction score
3
P1010701w.jpg


Certainly the modern revival of the old Otomatic.
Is based on the platform of the centaur-arrow with a new tower OTO-Melara.The prototype has the official name of Draco (dragon in Latin).


more information here
http://www.defence-observer.info/news/europe/420-draco
 

lastdingo

Blogger http://defense-and-freedom.blogspot.de/
Joined
Oct 18, 2008
Messages
586
Reaction score
26
Website
defense-and-freedom.blogspot.de
Thx, I as beginning to think my memory had fooled me when I didn't find it on the Otobreda website.

I dislike the use of a compromising radar (necessary for DART projectile, though) and the use of an unmanned turret (fit for a dedicated AD vehicle, not fit for a versatile combat vehicle). The 8x8 basis is fashionable, but again not advisable for a versatile combat vehicle.
 

xiaofan

ACCESS: Confidential
Joined
Jun 25, 2010
Messages
109
Reaction score
22
Sine we talk about Italian prototypes and never built so how can we forget the old Otomatic.

All the pictures are come from web.
 

Attachments

  • 1.jpg
    1.jpg
    55.4 KB · Views: 265
  • 8.jpg
    8.jpg
    80.8 KB · Views: 78
  • 7.jpg
    7.jpg
    118.8 KB · Views: 73
  • 6.jpg
    6.jpg
    138.2 KB · Views: 61
  • 5.jpg
    5.jpg
    132.9 KB · Views: 62
  • 4.jpg
    4.jpg
    142.4 KB · Views: 65
  • 3.jpg
    3.jpg
    141.3 KB · Views: 259
  • 2.jpg
    2.jpg
    92.6 KB · Views: 279

xiaofan

ACCESS: Confidential
Joined
Jun 25, 2010
Messages
109
Reaction score
22
Military-today mentioned "The Dardo IFV can wade through water obstacles up to 1.5 meters deep without preparation. It has been proposed that the 25-mm cannon could be replaced by an OTOBREDA 60-mm high velocity gun in a special turret on some vehicles." and here is the picture of that vehicle (the picture is come from web).
 

Attachments

  • 9.jpg
    9.jpg
    78.2 KB · Views: 153

Nico

ACCESS: Secret
Joined
Sep 9, 2008
Messages
266
Reaction score
30
I want to say that the Mantus' thread is welcome.
Seeing 'reportages' from Lybia, I saw some self-propelled howitzer that surely are the Italian-buil OTO-Melara Palmaria, derived from the tank that is the subject of this thread.
Even not a prototype (Palmaria was series bult for Lybian Army), the self-propelled gun could be considered... secret, as in Italy is near totally unknown or forgotten.
Could you tell us something about this fascinating combat vehicle, in this thread or another?
Nico
 

Attachments

  • 155p.jpg
    155p.jpg
    91.8 KB · Views: 165

MANTUS

ACCESS: Restricted
Joined
Nov 5, 2009
Messages
21
Reaction score
3
New vehicles and prototypes presented at the Republic Day parade

[flash=200,200]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k8eqWarL4Qo[/flash]
 

gral_rj

ACCESS: Confidential
Joined
Sep 6, 2006
Messages
90
Reaction score
31
MANTUS said:
New vehicles and prototypes presented at the Republic Day parade

What is the vehicle that appears at around 0:18(behind the Centauro with AA gun)? Centauro with 120mm gun? Self-propelled artillery Centauro?
 

MANTUS

ACCESS: Restricted
Joined
Nov 5, 2009
Messages
21
Reaction score
3
Is the centaur self-propelled artillery 155/39

Were not released details on this weapon, the vehicle is still under development.

Any information would be more than welcome
 

Pioneer

Seek out and close with the enemy
Senior Member
Joined
May 22, 2006
Messages
1,913
Reaction score
280
Does anyone have anything on the joint Italian/West German Leone MBT program, which started in 1975?

From what I can assertain, the Leone MBT, was in essence derived from the Leopard 1 for export, circumnavigating West Germany's ability to export to Middle Eastern/African nations........The principle difference between the Leone and the Leopard 1 appears to be:
- a cost-effective tank for export. Namely, a cost-effective version of the Leopard 1 MBT;
- The split for manufacturing would be 50-50, with the hull, engine, transmission, and running gear made in Germany and the turret, armament, and electrical equipment by the Italians. Assembly of all of these components was to take place at the OTO-Melara plant at La Spezia with the goal of having a functional prototype by March 1977 and the goal of serial production pending orders for 1978 and beyond;
- incorporated modifications to better suit tropical conditions - including the ventilation and filtration systems for improved cooling to allow the Leone to operate in temperatures as high as 50C (122F);
- The hull was essentially that of the Leopard 1 but it was tropicalized, optimised for use in hot, dry, dusty conditions with improved ventilation and filtration systems, with improved cooling;
- The turret, like that of the Leopard 1A3, was also made from welded rolled homogenous steel armor and featured spaced armor across the front arc for additional protection. The principle difference in the Leone's turret was the traverse system. Where as the Leopard was using the Cadillac-Gage electro-hydraulic system but the Lion was instead to use a new, cheaper, and less complicated Swiss system;
- The Leone was fitted with a 105mm rifled main gun made by OTO-Melara which would have been capable of firing NATO standardized 105mm ammunition.

NOTE: The only interest from an export point of view had come from a delegation from Pakistan who was looking at modernizing their own tank fleet at the time.

No serial production ever took place and only the single prototype was ever completed.

(Source: http://beyondthesprues.com/Forum/index.php?topic=1300.180)

Question if I may to the forum, does anyone know if the Leone was equipped with crew air conditioning, to support it's intended Middle Eastern/African AO?

The mention of the Leone turret having "spaced armor across the front arc for additional protection"; does this mean the Leopard 1A3 turret didn't have this (I was under the impression that the Leo 1A4 did?) ? So this gave the Leone turret superior protection than that offered by the Leopard 1A3's turret?

What made the Leone 'cheaper/less expensive' compared to the Leopard 1A3? Was it cheaper Italian manufacturing labour costs?


Regards
Pioneer
 

Grey Havoc

The path not taken.
Senior Member
Joined
Oct 9, 2009
Messages
12,733
Reaction score
2,727
Going back to the WWII and the period immediately preceding it:
Top 5 Rare Italian Tanks That Were BADLY Needed in WWll
Published on Dec 5, 2019
Songs :
- National Anthem of the Kingdom of Italy (1861-1943) - Marcia Reale d'Ordinanza
- Sad Violin [HQ]
- Gymnopedie No 1
Vehicles :
- Carro d, Assaulto L/5 5 Ton
- Semovente M.5 . 1939
- Carro Armato P.75
- Carro Armato Fiat-Ansaldo Celere Sahariano
- Carro Armato P.26/40 + P.43
 
Last edited:

Grey Havoc

The path not taken.
Senior Member
Joined
Oct 9, 2009
Messages
12,733
Reaction score
2,727
A couple of the interesting video comments:
Paolo Viti1 hour ago (edited)
As an Italian I knew quite well the Italian military situation especially during the thirties, almost handled by real amateurs starting with the combined major staff, army, navy and aviation that hardly communicated with each other. This staff had little knowledge, among many matters, on techinical issues and as a consequence they gave bad directions/advice to important firms like Ansaldo or FIAT in order to improve their productivity yet those same firms in order to save money pocket as much they could never did serious research and stuck to bolted/riveted armour, very slow production and ensuing obsolete tanks before even being drafted. Without writing a book it is curious to know that already during the end of the 1st WW knew that bolted/riveted armour was dangerous and knew that sloped armour offered better protection. They knew very well that the Germans in the late twenties were already mastering welding techniques and Ansaldo has been welding massive slabs of armour but nothing came out of it. Finally I want to mention about the the P26/40: altrough the design started in 1940 by direct order of Mussolini (jumping over the bureaucracy!) it was much better than the contemporary Italian tanks yet it was riveted with better sloped armour, it was hydraulic operated and probaby because of a narrow ring so it only had a crew of two on the turret, it had an obsolet suspension that was not effective on high speed. The real problem was the engine that wasted so much time because it was not available for that tank so instead of opting for a powerful in-line aereo engine, I think only on was in production, instead it was decided to devope a new 330 HP SPA 8V diesel engine instead of putting a license production 12-cylinder Maybach HL120 TRM 300 that would have been available in less then one year with it's grearbox so the rest is history but what they did was far too late with very limited resources. Hope I did't bore you....



dcanmore2 days ago
Good video, however, Matilda II is an infantry tank not a cruiser tank. Italians also deployed what is considered one of the best anti-tank guns of WWII, the 90mm Canone da 90/53, it was also used as a naval and anti-aircraft gun, comparable to the famed German 88mm.
 

Similar threads

Top