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BRDM-2



Overview


BRDM-2

BRDM-2 reconnaissance vehicle in service with Polish forces.
Source: J. Magnuski - © public domain

Origin
Soviet Union
Type
Reconnaissance vehicle
Entered service
1962
Status
In service
Development
Early 1960’s
Developer
Soviet Union - V.K. Rubtsov
Production
1962 - 1989
Producer
Soviet Union - GAZ
1963 - 1982
Soviet Union - Arzamas machine-building plant
1982 - 1989
Number produced
About 9.400, possibly including variants
Designations
BRDM-2 / Boyevaya Razvedyvatelnaya Dozornaya Mashina 2
Russian for "combat reconnaissance and patrol vehicle"
BTR-40PB
Early name
BTR-40P-2
Early name
GAZ-41
Factory designation
SPW-40P2
East German service

Description


Introduction

The BRDM-2 is a reconnaissance vehicle of Soviet origin. It was developed in the early 1960’s as a more capable alternative to the BRDM-1. Large quantities have been produced and remain in service today. The name BRDM-2 stands for "Boyevaya Razvedyvatelnaya Dozornaya Mashina", which translates to "combat reconnaissance and patrol vehicle".

Layout

The BRDM-2 is based on the chassis of the BRDM-1, but has the engine in the rear for greater internal volume. Unlike the BRDM-1 a fully enclosed one man turret is fitted. There are no hatches or doors besides the ones in the front roof of the vehicle.

Firepower

The BRDM-2 is armed with a powerful 14.5mm KPVT heavy machine gun and a coaxial 7.62mm PKT machine gun. Both weapons can be fired on the move, but at reduced accuracy since the turret has no stabilization.

Protection

The steel hull and turret protects the crew from small arms fire and shell splinters. The BRDM-2 is vulnerable for all heavier weapons including heavy machine gun fire and road side bombs. The wheels are particularly vulnerable to puncture. An NBC protection system is fitted as standard. Some upgrade packages add smoke grenade dischargers but most vehicles have none.

Mobility

The 4x4 wheeled chassis provides a 100 km/h road speed and good all terrain mobility. Four chain driven belly wheels can be lowered to increase off road performance. A 140 hp gasoline engine provides propulsion. The BRDM-2 is fully amphibious and may achieve speeds of 10 km/h in the water.

Users

The BRDM-2 was widely used by Soviet and Warsaw Pact nations. It was also exported to most nations with good ties to the USSR. Nowadays the BRDM-2 is no longer produced but it remains in active use in reduced numbers. Various local upgrades have been developed.

Details


BRDM-2

Side view of Russian army BRDM-2 reconnaissance vehicle.
Source: Counterfeiter - © public domain

Variants of the BRDM-2

The BRDM-2 chassis has served as the basis for many specialist combat vehicles. Some of these are discussed in separate articles. The variants that closely resemble the original BRDM-2 reconnaissance vehicle are listed below.

BRDM-2
Original reconnaissance model, this variant is the most common version.
BRDM-2RKh
NBC reconnaissance model with a variety of detection equipment for chemical and radioactive threats and two boxes with lane markers. Also known as BRDM-2RKhA.
BRDM-2RKhB
Improved NBC reconnaissance model with added ability to detect biological threats. Can be identified by turret with KPVT replaced by second PKT and a single land marker box.
BRDM-2UM
Command version without turret and fitted with generator and additional radios.
Facts BRDM-2
General
Origin
Soviet Union
Type
Reconnaissance vehicle
Crew
4 (commander, driver, gunner, radio operator)
Dimensions
Weight
7.0 t combat load
Length
5.75 m
Width
2.35 m
Height
2.31 m overall
Main armament
Type
14.5mm KPVT heavy machine gun
Mount
Turret
Ammunition
500 rounds, 50 ready to fire
Gun sight
PP-61AM
Elevation
-5 to +30°, manual
Traverse
360°, manual
Stabilization
No, but able to fire on the move at limited speeds
Secondary armament
Type
7.62mm PKT machine gun
Mount
Coaxial
Ammunition
2.000 rounds, 250 ready to fire
Traverse
Traverse and elevation as main armament
Automotive
Chassis
Wheeled chassis, 4x4
4 retractable chain driven belly wheels
Tire size
13.00 x18
Wheelbase
3.1 m
Track
1.84 m
Engine
GAZ-41 V8 petrol
Power output
140 hp at 3.400 rpm
Transmission
Manual, 4 forward, 1 reverse
Mobility
Max speed
100 km/h on road
10 km/h in water
Turn radius
9 m
Ground clearance
0.43 m
Power to weight ratio
20.0 hp/t
Fuel capacity
290 L
Range
750 km on road
Wall
0.4 m
Trench
1.25 m
Gradient
60%
Fording
Amphibious
Protection
Armor type
Steel
Thickness
7mm all around
NBC system
Yes
Systems
Night vision
Yes
Radio
Intercom and long range radio

Vehicles based on the BRDM-2 chassis


Vehicles based on the BRDM-2 chassis

9P148

The 9P148 is the latest of the tank destroyer variants based on the BRDM-2 chassis. It has a launcher for five 9M113 Konkurs anti-tank missiles.

Media