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Bronetransporter BTR-40

History

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Soviet Manual 1957
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The first post-war armored personal carrier to enter service with the Soviet Army was the BTR 40.

Wartime experience with the American lend-lease Scout Car M3A1 and M3A2 showed the Soviet Army an urgent need for such an armored vehicle. The wartime BA-64 and its moderized BA-64B version were manufactured until 1946 and remained in service until the mid-1950's. The drawback was its size and the inability to improve the armament, armor, or increase the vehicle crew.

 

A new vehicle was needet therefore and the GAZ 63 4x4 truck chassis was selected as the basis of the first post war Armored vehicle.

 

To develop armored vehicle models in the post-war era, a new design bureau was set up at the Gorkovskiy Avtomobilniy Zavod ( GAZ ). The new Dedkov OKB ( Opytno Konstruktorskoye Bureau - Experimental Design Bureau ), directed by V.A.Dedkov,  started design work on the BTR 40 at the end of 1947 under the designation "Izdeliye 141".

Design responsibility for the Izdeliye 141 was assigned to senior engineer V.K.Rubtsov, who became the primary designer of Russian armored cars for the next three decades.

The Izdeliye 141 was designed in response of the military requirement for an APC capable to transport eight soldiers. Two variants have been developed - one for scout/APC duties and the other one for ground support/air defence.

The prototype 141's were completed at the end of 1947. The prototypes were different from the later series production models. They had a chamfered, highly feceted hull with half doors in the lower hull section and angular sheet steel rear wheel arches - the design bearing some resemblance to the earlier BA-64.

The trail prototypes of the Izdeliye 141 were consequently reworked and a new vehicle with a slab-sided fighting compartment and rear was developed. The definitive series appearing in prototype form in 1949.

State trails of the new, second series prototypes were conducted in 1949 and the vehicle was accepted for service with the Soviet Army under the designation BTR-40.

Series production began in Gorkiy late 1950 with the factory designation GAZ-40.

The Dedkov OKB subsequently received a state prize for the BTR-40 design.

The normal Armament of the BTR-40 was the 7,62mm SGMB but from the russian manual we also know of the special mount for the Infantry Squads DP-28.

In total approximately 8,500 BTR-40's of all variants were manufactured between 1950 and 1960 when production stopped for the new BRDM that was accepted for service in 1958.