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Dardo



Overview


Dardo

An Italian army Dardo in the field.
Source: OTO Melara - © copyright lies with original owner

Origin
Italy
Type
Mechanized infantry combat vehicle
Entered service
Early 2000's
Status
In service
Development
1982 - 1988
Developer
Italy - Iveco & Oto Melara
Production
2002 - 2004
Producer
Italy - Iveco
Unit cost
€ 2.8 million in 2006
Number produced
200
Designations
VCC 80 / Veicolo Corazzato da Combattimento
Notable users
Italy - Army

Description


Introduction

The Dardo is a mechanized infantry combat vehicle of Italian origin. It was developed in the early 1980's to supplement the M113 in Italian service. Only 200 Dardo's have been produced of the original requirement for 500 vehicles. Since the adoption of the Freccia infantry fighting vehicle it seems unlikely the production of the Dardo will resume.

Layout

The Dardo has a conventional layout with the engine and driver in the front of the hull. The two man turret is mounted in the middle and the crew compartment is at the rear. The 7 soldiers access the vehicle through the ramp with door in the rear. A variety of different versions were proposed but only the infantry fighting vehicle version was produced in quantity.

Firepower

The main armament is the 25mm KBA autocannon. It has a cyclic rate of fire of 600 rpm and a total of 200 rounds are carried. A 7.62mm MG42/59 machine gun is fitted as a coaxial weapon. The prototype was fitted with a single TOW anti-tank missile on either side of the turret. The production vehicles do not have this capability but could be refitted if needed.

Protection

The Dardo features an aluminum hull with additional steel plates on top. This provides full protection from small arms fire and shell splinters and 14.5mm rounds over the frontal arc. An NBC system is fitted and two banks of four smoke grenade launchers are fitted. It is possible to fit an appliqué armor package which increases weight by 3 t. The appliqué armor increases protection to 25mm APDS rounds over the frontal arc.

Mobility

The tracked chassis gives the Dardo good mobility on roads and cross country. The maximum speed is 70 km/h. An Iveco 520 hp turbo diesel engine coupled to an automatic transmission provides propulsion.

Users

The Italian army is the sole operator of the Dardo. A total of 200 vehicles have been delivered. There was a total requirement for 500 vehicles, but due to the end of the Cold War this number was reduced. A total of 6 vehicles have been deployed in Iraq and 10 vehicles have been shipped to Afghanistan in 2004.

Details


Dardo

Two Italian army Dardo during a training exercise.
Source: Italian Army - © copyright lies with original owner

Variants of the Dardo

The Dardo is a modern mechanized infantry combat vehicle. It is armed with a 25mm KBA autocannon. Several variants based on the same chassis have been proposed. These include an IFV version with TOW missiles on either side of the turret, an armored ambulance, command post and 120mm mortar carrier. Of these variants only a single vehicle was produced.

Facts Dardo
General
Origin
Italy
Type
Mechanized infantry combat vehicle
Crew
3 + 7 (commander, driver, gunner, 7 infantry)
Dimensions
Weight
23.0 t combat load
Length
6.71 m
Width
3.14 m
Height
2.64 m overall
1.75 m hull top
Main armament
Type
25mm KBA autocannon
Mount
Turret
Ammunition
200 rounds, all ready to fire
Elevation
-10 to +30 degrees, powered
Traverse
360 degrees, powered
Stabilizer
Yes, both axis
Secondary armament
Type
7.62mm MG42/59 machine gun
Mount
Coaxial with main armament
Ammunition
700 rounds, all ready to fire
Traverse
Traverse and elevation as main armament
Chassis
Chassis
Tracked chassis, 6 roadwheels
Drive sprocket front, idler rear
Ground pressure
0.70 kg/cm^2
Automotive
Engine
Iveco 8260 V6 turbo diesel
520 hp at 2.300 rpm
Transmission
ZF LSG 1500 automatic
4 forward, 2 reverse
Mobility
Max speed
70 km/h
Range
500 km
Power to weight ratio
22.6 hp/t
Obstacle crossing
Ground clearance
0.40 m
Wall
0.85 m
Trench
2.5 m
Gradient
60 %
Slope
50 %
Fording
1.5 m
Protection
Armor type
Aluminum and steel
NBC system
Yes
Smoke
2x4 80mm smoke grenade discharger