Ratel 20

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Ratel 20 IFV
Ratel 20
Country Of Origin:South Africa
Designation:Infantry Fighting Vehicle
Configuration:6 x 6
Manufacturer:Reumech Sandock
Length: 7,21m
Width: 2,7m
Height: 2,395m
Weight: 18,5 t
Ground Clearance: 350mm
Trench: 1,15m
Speed: 105 km/h (road)
30km/h (off-road)
Range: 1000 km
Primary armament: 20mm semi-automatic cannon
Secondary armament:1 x 7.62 mm MG (coaxial), 7.62 mm MG (anti-aircraft), 1 x 7.62 mm MG (anti-aircraft), 2 x 2 smoke grenade dischargers
Power plant:D 3256 BTXF 6-cylinder in-line turbocharged diesel developing 282 hp at 2,200 rpm
Crew:4 + 7

The Ratel, a 6x6 South African IFV, entered production in 1977. It is the basic IFV of the South African Mechanized Infantry battalions. Developed for the South African Army to circumvent the arms embargo of South Africa. It took into account the local conditions and requirements. The first wheeled IFV designed and put into military service. It is also the first IFV with a commanderís Cupola. Armour protection is given against small arms fire and the hull design offers protection in the event of a land mine detonation. The tyres are run-flat types. The doors open to the side, with hatches to the top and an access door at the rear of the vehicle.


Production History

The South African Army was using the 6x6 British Alvis Saracen APC for several years before the acquisition of spare parts become problematic due to the arms embargo, the South Africans decided to manufacture a new vehicle to satisfy their needs. After building the Eland, a modified version of the 4x4 Panhard AML armoured car, Sandock then undertook to design a replacement for the Saracen. The prototype was completed in 1976, and the first units rolled out the following year. Since then, over a thousand Ratel vehicles were manufactured.


  • Ratel 20 - Original version, French designed turret (see side notes)
  • Ratel 60 - crew of 4+7, turret is identical to that of the Eland 60 with a 60 mm breech-loading mortar
  • Ratel 81 - no turret, but a 81mm mortar is installed in the crew compartment for use as a fire support platform
  • Ratel 90 - crew of 5+7, turret is identical to that of the Eland 90. Primary role: Anti-Tank support to the Mechanized Battalions.
  • Ratel Command - crew of 9 men, two-seater turret with a 12,7 mm MG
  • Ratel Maintenance - setup as a mobile workshop
  • Ratel ZT3 - new anti-tank turret, with a container containing 3 AT missiles ready with employment
  • Ratel Logistic - 8x8 logistic vehicle. Only 2 were ever built and thus never went into production.


Combat History

  • Angola 1978
  • Western Sahara

Missing image
Ratel 60 IFV

Ratel 81 Mortar Carrier Ratel 90 Anti-tank

See also


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