Over the past several decades or so there has been a considerable shift by modern armies of the world away from the expensive and complex tracked vehicle to more conventional armored wheeled carriers. This helped to bring other nation's engineering prowess to the forefront as was the case with the Finnish "Patria Pasi XA - a 6x6 wheeled armored vehicle serving in the Armored Personnel Carrier (APC) role. The Pasi XA (originally recognized as the "Sisu Pasi") was developed to a Finnish Army requirement for a modern APC that included an inherent amphibious quality. It has since been offered for export and taken on by Austria, Denmark, Estonia, Ghana, Ireland, the Netherlands, Sweden, and the United Nations.
The core Pasi XA design saw a 6x6 wheeled arrangement with three large diameter, well-spaced road wheels fitted to each hull side. Ground clearance was decidedly high which aided in cross-country travel. The driving compartment was set to the front of the hull and included thick bulletproof windscreens and automobile-style hinged side access doors. All windowed sections featured hinged armor panels that could be raised to add additional armor protection in active warzones. Two banks of four smoke grenade dischargers were fitted at the extreme front end corners of the hull and allowed the crew to shield its movements by way of self-generated smoke screens. The vehicle exhibited some slight sloping of its various armor panels which provided ballistics protection against small arms fire and shell splinters. With the driving compartment set forwards, the powerpack was centralized and this opened the rear of the hull for a fighting cabin to house passengers. The hull roof line was dotted with various access hatches for the crew and passengers alike. The sides of the vehicle hull walls were given vision blocks for use by the passengers as well as gun ports for engaging enemies from the safety of the protected hull. A pair of waterjets were installed low along the rear hull face to provide the necessary propulsion of the vehicle through water sources. Armor protection reached up to 10mm thickness at the most critical of facings. A typical operating crew was two (driver and commander) with seating for up to sixteen occupants.
The Pasi XA began life in pilot form as the XA-180 with the first example made unveiled in 1980. The vehicle was constructed by Sisu Auto which gave it its original name of Sisu Pasi. In competition with two other contenders, the XA-180 design won out under the Finnish Army trials that spanned into 1983 and resulted in a first-batch order of 50 vehicles by year's end. Sisu Auto, founded in 1931 in Helsinki, specialized in the manufacture of heavy vehicles and other automotive products and lent its name to the early Pasi vehicle forms until subsequent orders came at a time when Patria Oyj had taken over the product - producing the more recognizable "Patria Pasi" name. The product line was then formally known as the "Patria Pasi XA" and foreign launch customers became Estonia, Netherlands, Norway, and Sweden.