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WZT ARV (Series)

Armored Recovery Vehicle

Poland | 1970

"The Polish WZT represented a line of Armored Recovery Vehicles first built atop the chassis of the Soviet T-55 Main Battle Tank and progressively updated from then on - culminating in a modern version based on the PT-91 MBT."

Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 08/07/2019 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site; No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.
Like other countries under the sphere of Soviet influence during the Cold War (1947-1991), Poland benefitted (at least militarily) from its relationship with a superpower. From this relationship came access to various weapon designs running the gamut of small arms and aircraft to vehicles and combat tanks. As such, with access to the Soviet line of Main Battle Tanks (MBTs) like the T-55 and T-72 series, the Polish Army went on to adopt their Armored Recovery Vehicle (ARV) forms based on these original Soviet designs. The Soviet BTS-1, based on the T-54 MBT, was purchased by Poland in the latter part of the 1960s. This experience ultimately led the country to invest in a series of similar vehicles under the "Woz Zabezpieczenia Technicznego" (literally "Armored Recovery Vehicle") name, or abbreviated to "WZT".

Beyond the Soviet-inspired ARVs, the series was expanded to include ARVs based on the local Polish PT-91 "Twardy" MBT hull, itself based on the Soviet T-72M1. The series has since encompassed the WZT-1, WZT-2, WZT-3, WZT-3M and WZT-4 built upon the respective hulls of the T-55, T-55A, T-72M, PT-91 and PT-91M tanks. The WZT-1 was in service until 1978. The WZT-4 was developed for the Malaysian Army.

The Polish Army no longer relies on the older WZT ARV series forms though some existing hulls are used for other battlefield roles. It maintains some twenty-nine WZT-3M models as a standard ARV to operate alongside its standard MBT, the Twardy.

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Power & Performance
Those special qualities that separate one land system design from another. Performance specifications presented assume optimal operating conditions for the WZT-2 (T-55) Armored Recovery Vehicle.
1 x V-55A 12-cylinder water-cooled, diesel-fueled engine developing 580 horsepower driving a conventional track-and-wheel arrangement.
Installed Power
31 mph
50 kph
Road Speed
292 miles
470 km
The physical qualities of the WZT-2 (T-55) Armored Recovery Vehicle.
23.3 ft
7.1 meters
O/A Length
10.7 ft
3.27 meters
O/A Width
6.9 ft
2.1 meters
O/A Height
69,446 lb
31,500 kg | 34.7 tons
Armament & Ammunition
Available supported armament, ammunition, and special-mission equipment featured in the design of the WZT ARV (Series) Armored Recovery Vehicle.
1 x 12.7mm DShK Model 1938/46 Heavy Machine Gun (HMG) for anti-aircraft / anti-infantry coverage.
Nightvision - YES - OPTIONAL.
Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear Protection (CBRN) - YES.
Notable series variants as part of the WZT ARV (Series) family line.
WZT - Base Series Designation
WZT-1 - Version built from T-55 MBT
WZT-2 - Version built from T-55A MBT
WZT-3 - Version built from T-72M MBT
WZT-3M - Version built from PT-91 MBT
WZT-4 - Version built from PT-91M MBT for export to Malaysia.
Global customers who have evaluated and/or operated the WZT ARV (Series). Nations are displayed by flag, each linked to their respective national land systems listing.

Total Production: 50 Units

Contractor(s): Bumar-Labedy - Poland
National flag of India National flag of Malaysia National flag of Poland

[ India; Malaysia; Poland ]
Design Qualities
Some designs are single-minded in their approach while others offer a more versatile solution to battlefield requirements.
Some designs stand the test of time while others are doomed to never advance beyond the drawing board; let history be their judge.
Going Further...
The WZT ARV (Series) Armored Recovery Vehicle appears in the following collections:
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