armoured vehicle

Motor vehicle with plating for protection against bullets, shells, or other projectiles that moves on wheels or tracks.

The tank is the chief armoured vehicle for larger military forces. Other military types include infantry fighting vehicles, amphibious landing vehicles, and mobile weapons platforms such as self-propelled artillery and antiaircraft guns. Infantry fighting vehicles, descended from the armoured personnel carriers of World War II and the Vietnam War, are armoured, tracked vehicles that transport infantry into battle but also serve as platforms from which soldiers can fight without dismounting. Armoured cars are wheeled civilian vehicles, ranging from commercial trucks to luxury sedans, that generally are equipped with armour and other amenities for securely transporting valuables and individuals over paved roads.

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armoured also spelled  Armored,  

      motor vehicle that is fitted with partial or complete armour plating for protection against bullets, shells, or other projectiles. Armoured vehicles for military use can move either on wheels or on two endless metal chains called tracks. The tank (q.v.) is the principal fighting armoured vehicle. Other military types include armoured personnel carriers, armoured cars, self-propelled guns, tank destroyers, and mobile antiaircraft systems. The classification also includes armoured cars used for such civilian purposes as transporting valuables.

      Armoured personnel carriers are the most widely used armoured vehicles after tanks. They are tracked, armoured vehicles that are used for transporting infantrymen into battle or as combat platforms from which infantry can fight without dismounting. Armoured personnel carriers first appeared in large numbers early in World War II, when the Germans adopted them to carry the infantry contingents of their panzer divisions into battle. These vehicles, though only partly armoured half-tracks, began the replacement of unarmoured trucks for this purpose. After World War II many nations developed fully tracked carriers with all-around armour protection and a mounted heavy machine gun. The most modern infantry fighting vehicles are armed with an automatic cannon and antitank guided missiles.

      The armoured car is an armoured, wheeled vehicle that is usually fitted with a 20-millimetre to 90-millimetre gun and a machine gun. Armoured cars made their first appearance in large numbers in World War II, particularly in the North African theatre. Armoured cars perform poorly on wet or uneven terrain in comparison to tracked vehicles, but the former move faster on roads or other flat expanses. They are lightly armoured and rely on speed for their protection, thus making them good reconnaissance vehicles.

      The self-propelled gun is essentially a 100-millimetre to 200-millimetre artillery piece mounted in a turret on a medium or light tracked or wheeled vehicle that is armoured to varying degrees. It is a useful antitank weapon, though a highly vulnerable one. A related type of vehicle is a tank destroyer, a tracked vehicle that relies on speed and firepower and has only a minimum of armour protection. Tank destroyers are usually armed with either an antitank guided-missile launcher, an 80-millimetre to 90-millimetre gun, or a recoilless rifle. Antiaircraft guns (antiaircraft gun) can be made mobile by mounting them on a tracked or wheeled vehicle. The armament often consists of automatic cannons or surface-to-air missile launchers.

      Armoured cars for civilian use made their appearance shortly after World War I. Armour was applied to truck bodies to enable the safe transport of currency, payrolls, and other valuables without fear of easy loss to armed robbers. These vehicles are essentially bulletproof chambers with armoured doors and gun ports and with space inside for valuables and armed guards.

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Universalium. 2010.

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