Combat vehicles / Reconnaissance / Rooikat

Rooikat

General Facts

  • TYPE
    Reconnaissance vehicle

  • ORIGIN
    South Africa

  • NICKNAMES
    -

  • DESIGNED
    1985 - 1987

  • DESIGNER
    Vickers OMC

  • PRODUCTION
    1989 - 1990's

  • PRODUCERS
    South Africa - Vickers OMC

  • QUANTITY
    About 240

  • UNIT COST
    Unknown

  • CHARACTERISTICS
    Able to destroy most combat vehicles
    High level of protection
    High quality fire control
    Large and heavy
    Expensive to produce

Introduction

The Rooikat is a modern wheeled reconnaissance vehicle of South African origin. It was developed in the late 1980's to replace the AML-90 in South African service. Due to its powerful armament it may double as a tank destroyer. The name Rooikat is Afrikaans for African lynx.

Layout

The Rooikat is based on a large 8x8 chassis that was developed specifically for this system. The driver is located in the front, the turret with the other three crewmembers in the middle and the engine at the rear. The 8x8 chassis was chosen for its good mobility in the bush and to remain a low profile. The 76mm cannon is unique to the Rooikat and has been derived from the OTO Melara 76mm naval cannon. Since the 76mm rounds are smaller than 105mm rounds more ammunition can be carried.

Firepower

The Rooikat is armed with a rifled 76mm 62-caliber GT4 cannon for which total of 48 76mm rounds are carried. Due to its stabilization and good fire control system it is able to fire on the move. The APFSDS-T round has a 2 to 3 km range and will destroy most armored vehicles and older tanks. The HE-T rounds have a direct fire range of 3 km and indirect range of 12 km. The rate of fire is 6 rpm. A 7.62mm MG4 machine gun is fitted as a coaxial weapon and a second one is pintle mounted on the roof. The Rooikat 105 is armed with a 105mm rifled GT7 cannon for which only 32 NATO-compatible rounds are carried.

Protection

The steel armor protects the crew from 23mm rounds over the frontal arc and small arms fire and shell splinters all around. Mine protection is good, although it may not be of the same level as many other South African mine protected vehicles. A NBC system is optional. Two banks of four smoke grenade dischargers are fitted and a smoke screen can be laid by injecting diesel in the exhaust.

Mobility

The 8x8 chassis combined with large tires provides Rooikat has a very good all terrain performance and high road speed. A 563 hp diesel engine provides propulsion and the driver may select either 8x4 or 8x8 drive.

Users

The Rooikat with 76mm gun is only used by South Africa. About 240 have been built of which 80 remain in active service and many others are stored. The Rooikat has not been exported, although the Rooikat 105 is actively marketed.

Variants

Rooikat

The Rooikat is a reconnaissance vehicle that is based on a large 8x8 chassis and a unique 76mm gun. The low profile 8x8 chassis with its sloped front and large octagonal turret makes the Rooikat easy to identify. The Rooikat 105 is a modified version of the Rooikat that was developed for the export market. It has a 105mm GT7 rifled cannon, larger tires and can be fitted with various fire control systems. The original Rooikat is sometimes named Rooikat 76 to distinguish it from the 105mm version.

TypeReconnaissance vehicle
Crew4 (commander, driver, gunner, loader)
Length8.2 m (gun forward), 7.09 m (hull)
Width2.8 m (hull), 2.9 m (overall)
Height1.76 m (hull top), 2.5 m (turret roof), 2.8 m (overall)
Ground clearance0.4 m
Weight28.0 t combat load
Ground pressure?
WheelbaseWheeled chassis, 8x8, 1.55 + 2.03 + 1.63 m wheelbase, 2.42 m track, 16.00 x20 tires
Turn radius25 m
EngineV-10 turbo diesel, 563 hp
Power ratio20.1 hp/t
TransmissionAutomatic, 6 forward, 1 reverse
Speed120 km/h on road, 60 km/h cross country
Fuel540 L
Range1.000 km
Wall1 m
Trench2 m
Gradient70% gradient, 30% slope
Fording1.5 m
ArmorSteel
NBC equipmentOptional
Night visionYes
Smoke8x 81mm smoke grenade discharger, exhaust diesel injection
Remarks-
Armament76mm GT4 cannon
7.62mm MG4 CA
7.62mm MG4 AA
Weapon176mm GT4 L/62 rifled cannon in turret
48 rounds, 9 ready to use
360° traverse, -10 to +20° elevation
stabilized in both axis
Weapon27.62mm MG4 CA coaxial machine gun
3.600 rounds in total
traverse and elevation as main armament
Weapon37.62mm MG4 AA roof machine gun
3.600 rounds in total
manual traverse and elevation
non-stabilized
Weapon4-
Weapon5-
Weapon6-
TypeReconnaissance vehicle
Crew4 (commander, driver, gunner, loader)
Length8.80 m (gun forward), 7.1 m (hull)
Width2.9 m
Height1.76 m (hull top), 2.6 m (turret roof), 2.8 m (overall)
Ground clearance0.43 m
Weight28.5 t combat load
Ground pressure?
WheelbaseWheeled chassis, 8x8, 1.55 + 2.03 + 1.63 m wheelbase, 2.42 m track, 18.00 x20 tires
Turn radius25 m
EngineV-10 turbo diesel, 563 hp
Power ratio19.8 hp/t
TransmissionAutomatic, 6 forward, 1 reverse
Speed120 km/h on road, 50 km/h cross country
Fuel540 L
Range1.000 km
Wall1 m
Trench2 m
Gradient70% gradient, 30% slope
Fording1.5 m
ArmorSteel
NBC equipmentOptional
Night visionYes
Smoke8x 81mm smoke grenade discharger, exhaust diesel injection
Remarks-
Armament105mm GT7 cannon
7.62mm MG4 CA
7.62mm MG4 AA
Weapon1105mm GT7 rifled cannon in turret
32 rounds, 9 ready to use
360° traverse, -8 to +17° elevation
stabilized in both axis
Weapon27.62mm MG4 CA coaxial machine gun
3.200 rounds in total
traverse and elevation as main armament
Weapon37.62mm MG4 AA roof machine gun
3.200 rounds in total
manual traverse and elevation
non-stabilized
Weapon4-
Weapon5-
Weapon6-

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