By Sonaz (Own work) [CC BY-SA 2.0 de (], via Wikimedia Commons

Spähpanzer 2 Luchs – History

History of Spähpanzer 2 Luchs, an armored reconnaissance vehicle used by the German armed forces (Heer) from 1974 to 2009.

The Spähpanzer 2 Luchs (literally: armoured reconnaissance vehicle "Lynx") was an amphibious armoured fighting vehicle used for reconnaissance, in service in the German Army. It had a 8-wheel drive, two propellers used for crossing water courses and a driver position for each direction, and it was very silent.

It was powered by a 390 HP polyfuel engine, which allowed a maximum speed of 90 km/h (56 mph) on roads, with a 800 km (500 mi) autonomy. Under 30 km/h (19 mph) all four axles were steerable, allowing a better maneuverability. The maximum speed in water was 11 km/h (7 mph).

The main armament was a 20 mm (0.78 in) Rheinmetall MK 20 Rh 202 autocannon, in addition to a 7,62 mm (0.3 in) MG3 machine gun.

In 1985 this vehicle was upgraded to the version A2, with the removal of the IR/white light projector and with the installation of a thermal visor and a new radio system. The subsequent increase in weight, though, made it lose its amphibious capabilities.

Employed for recoinnassance during the Cold War since September 1975, it was later used in several peace-keeping missions in Croatia, Kosovo and Bosnia-Herzegovina from 1995 to 2004 in convoy escort roles. It was eventually struck off from service in 2009.

This vehicle bears the same name of a German reconnaissance tank used during the Second World War, the Pz.Kpfw. II Ausf. L "Luchs".

From Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia.

Spähpanzer 2 Luchs on display in the military history museum of Dresden, Germany.

Image sources: 1, 2

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