Chaimite V-600 Mortar Carriers

     Notes: Though Portugalís Chaimite-based vehicles are already beginning their replacement by the Pandur, and full replacement is expected to take place as soon as 2016, it is most likely will take longer than is expected.  In addition, Libyan Chaimite mortar carriers will almost certainly soldier on for a while.

     Most Chaimite mortar carriers carry the designation V-600, regardless of the type of mortar they carry and which Chaimite chassis they are built upon. The basic form of this vehicle is a Chaimite V-200 (four-wheel version) with an 81mm or 82mm mortar fitted in the passenger compartment, firing to the rear.  The 81mm mortar is fitted to most of these vehicles; the 82mm mortar equips the V-600s used by Libya.  The actual mortar used varied with time.  The mortar fires through two overhead hatches, with the interior filled primarily with racks for mortar ammunition and fuzes. Some other countries using the V-600 include Peru, Philippines and Peru; mounted mortars are weapons made except for Libya, who chose to mount Soviet-designed mortars they already owned in their V-600s.

     Most users of the V-600 also used 6-wheeled V-600s which mounted heavier mortars.  For most of itís career, these 6x6 Portuguese vehicles carried US-designed M-30 4.2Ē (107mm) mortars.  In the 1990s, however, Portugal replaced these with TDA 120mm mortars. 

     The Libyans mounted Russian-designed 120mm M-43ís on these vehicles.  Once again, the interior is basically full of racks for the mortar rounds and the mortar itself.

     It is rumored that about half-a-dozen 8x8 versions were made for Libya.  These larger chassis were requester to supply mobile platforms for some of Libyaís 160mm M-1953 mortars.  A more powerful 210-horsepower engine was installed to cope with the additional weight, and the suspension beefed up.  These vehicles were not found during or after the recent action in Libya, and it is uncertain as to what happened to them, but it is certain that only one small batch was produced. Commanderís machineguns on these Libyan vehicles are Italian-made MG-44/59s.

     The V-600s have an additional long-range radio; late in their career, all versions except Libyan versions received a mortar ballistic computer and the long-range radio was made data-capable. Like other Chaimites, the V-600 was originally powered by a Chrysler gasoline engine, but these were quickly replaced by a 155-horsepower Cummins diesel engine. Transmission is manual.  Suspension is of off-road-type, with number of wheels depending on the mortar carrier type. A spare tire normally mounted at the front of the vehicle. The front of the hull has a winch with a capacity of 4.53 tons, with 38.1 meters of cable. The Chaimite is amphibious, propelled in the water by its wheels; however, with the mortar fit, swimming a V-600 can be dangerous due back-heaviness. Armor is painfully light.

     Just to the front of and above the side door is a station for the vehicle commander; he is armed with a machinegun (several sizes possible).  His position is ringed by all-around vision blocks.  There is no provision for aiming and firing when buttoned up, and the V-600 has no form of turret.  The mortar fires from enlarged overhead hatches on the rear of the roof. The driver remains on the front left side.  There are the usual clamshell doors on either side of the vehicle. The driver and commander have small bullet resistant windows to the front and sides of them, and hatches above them.  The driver and commander have firing ports directly in front of them and to the sides of them, but these are only shutters with armored covers and not sealed firing ports.  The standard firing ports in the sides are plated over, but the one on the rear left remains.  (This is in the rear door.)

Vehicle

Price

Fuel Type

Load

Veh Wt

Crew

Mnt

Night Vision

Radiological

V-600 81/82mm

$134,228

D, A

600 kg

7.71 tons

4

6

Passive IR (D)

Enclosed

V-600 120mm

$207,397

D, A

700 kg

8.22 tons

4

7

Passive IR (D)

Enclosed

V-600 160mm

$326,199

D, A

800 kg

10.01 tons

6

8

Passive IR (D)

Enclosed

 

Vehicle

Tr Mov

Com Mov

Fuel Cap

Fuel Cons

Config

Susp

Armor

V-600 81/82mm

244/148

61/37/6

300

71

Stnd

W(3)

HF3  HS2  HR2

V-600 120mm

229/139

57/35/6

350

76

Stnd

W(4)

HF3  HS2  HR2

V-600 160mm

252/153

63/38/6

450

101

Stnd

W(6)

HF3  HS2  HR2

 

Vehicle

Fire Control

Stabilization

Armament

Ammunition

V-600 81/82mm

None

None

MAG (C) or M-2HB (C) or M-249 (C); 81mm or 82mm mortar

2400x7.62mm or 1700x.50 or 3200x5.56mm; 50x81mm or 82mm

V-600 120mm

None

None

MAG (C) or M-2HB (C) or M-249 (C); 120mm TDA or Bloc mortar

2800x7.62mm or 2000x.50 or 3700x5.56mm; 40x120mm

V-600 160mm

None

None

MG-44/59; 160mm mortar

3200x7.62mm; 35x160mm