Armor: July 5, 2000

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Italy's Iveco-Oto-Breda has come up with a variant of its Centauro eight-wheeled armored personnel carrier designed for export sales. The new variant of the Centauro has been reduced from 3.28m wide to only 3m wide to allow it to maneuver through narrow streets, something Italian forces in the Balkans have noted as a problem. The new variant is also used to showcase a new turret. The two-man turret carries a 60mm high velocity cannon instead of the 25mm gun on the Italian Army's Centauros. The larger turret reduces the number of infantry carried in the back from eight to six, although an export customer could select the original turret if it wanted the larger infantry team. The new variant has sealed up the firing ports on the Italian version, although the vision blocks are retained to allow the infantry to see outside of the vehicle. Another variant of the Centauro, under development for the Italian Army, has increased volume; it is longer and higher. To handle the increased load, the engine will be replaced by the more powerful one designed for the tracked DARDO infantry fighting vehicle. The company is also developing anti-tank, command, ambulance, and recovery vehicles.--Stephen V Cole

 


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