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WZT ARV (Series)

Armored Recovery Vehicle [ 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.

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.©MilitaryFactory.com
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Service Year

Poland national flag graphic


National flag of India National flag of Malaysia National flag of Poland India; Malaysia; Poland
(OPERATORS list includes past, present, and future operators when applicable)
Onboard systems provide solutions to accomplish a variety of battlefield engineering tasks.
Special Purpose
Special purpose design developed to accomplish an equally-special battlefield role or roles.

23.3 ft
7.1 m
10.7 ft
3.27 m
6.9 ft
2.1 m
69,446 lb
31,500 kg
34.7 tons
(Showcased structural values pertain to the WZT-2 (T-55) production variant. Length typically includes main gun in forward position if applicable to the design)
Powerplant: 1 x V-55A 12-cylinder water-cooled, diesel-fueled engine developing 580 horsepower driving a conventional track-and-wheel arrangement.
31.1 mph
(50.0 kph)
292.0 mi
(470.0 km)
(Showcased performance specifications pertain to the WZT-2 (T-55) production variant. Compare this entry against any other in our database)
1 x 12.7mm DShK Model 1938/46 Heavy Machine Gun (HMG) for anti-aircraft / anti-infantry coverage.

Supported Types

Graphical image of a tank medium machine gun
Graphical image of a tank heavy machine gun

(Not all weapon types may be represented in the showcase above)

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.

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