The Minister for Defence selects the lightweight armoured vehicle (VBL)

Launched in 1978, the invitation to tender from EMAT (Land Army authority) led Panhard General Defense to propose a lightweight armoured vehicle which was selected in 1985.

The VBL is a wheeled, amphibious, armoured vehicle with great mobility, and was designed for reconnaissance and infiltration missions. Its design followed the rule of three: 3 tonnes, 3 metres long, 3 crew, space divided into 3 (2/3 for the cab and 1/3 for the engine), 3 doors and 3 hatches on the roof.

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The self-supporting body is made of very high density steel of between 5 and 11 mm thick, and the armoured windows offer the same protection as the steel. The XD-3T Peugeot Diesel turbocharged engine delivers 95 HP and has a top speed of 95 km/h. Available in several versions, 1600 examples were ordered by France and it has enjoyed considerable export success (African countries and Mexico)


Book : Yves Debay, VBL Panhard, Histoire et collections (Histoire and collections), 2004.

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