Jagdpanzer SK 105 Kurassier Light Tank / Tank Destroyer (TD)
The Austrian Jagdpanzer SK 105 Light Tank was classified as a light tank and armed through a 105mm rifled main gun in a unique oscillating turret.
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The Jagdpanzer SK 105 Light Tank was a tank destroyer developed by Saurer-Werke for the Austrian Army during the Cold War. Its design centered around a capable rifled 105mm main gun armament within a traversing turret assembly atop a lightweight tracked chassis. As a tank destroyer, the SK 105 would naturally be called upon to neutralize enemy armor at range and fill a void in the mechanized forces of Austria - the tank-heavy Soviet Army being the primary enemy of the period. Design work on the vehicle began in 1965 to which a prototype was then completed for testing in 1967 - essentially built up from the preceding Saurer 4K 4FA Armored Personnel Carrier of 1961. Saurer-Werke was then absorbed into the now-defunct Steyr-Daimler-Puch consortium in 1970. The formal designation of the tank became SK 105 "Kurraisser" (sometimes written as "SK-105") and authorized serial production commenced in 1971.
The SK 105 is a tank design of conventional configuration. It features a basic hull with a well-sloped glacis plate, shallow hull superstructure and rear-set engine compartment. The turret is fitted amidships for desired balance when traveling and firing. The hull sits atop a tracked system containing five road wheels to a hull side with the drive sprocket to the rear and the track idler at the front. Three track return rollers guide the track over the road wheels. The vehicle is crewed by three personnel made up of the driver, tank commander and gunner. The driver sits front-left in the hull with the remaining crew in the turret (commander to the left hand side with the gunner to his right). NBC protection is provided for the entire crew and infra-red equipment is located at the driver and commander stations. Armor protection is 40mm at its thickest to help counter the threat from 20mm and smaller fire. Overall weight is approximately 19.5 short tons.