Landships II

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Post Info TOPIC: Armstrong Whitworth 1906 Armoured Car


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Armstrong Whitworth 1906 Armoured Car

I was wondering if anyone had any additional information or pictures.

I would love to see an image of the gun-shield and 1 pounder Pom-Pom fitted.

It certainly looks like it's built to go off road doesn't it? It seems like this vehicle would have fared better in the mire than the Rolls Royce and Lanchester armoured cars. Especially being that this car can pull itself free using that big winch.


-- Edited by Vilkata at 00:29, 2006-10-04



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Although it is described as an armoured car, it was intended to function mainly as a gun tractor. The wheels were to have been interchangeable with those of the artillery it was to tow, so if a wheel of the car was wrecked, it could be exchanged with a wheel from the towed gun. David Fletcher has written, 'What the Royal Artillery, with their traditon of saving the guns at all costs, thought about that idea is not recorded.' Fletcher also notes that the vehicle was demonstrated first and foremost as a gun tractor, hence the business with the wheels, and that a 1-pdr pom-pom could be fitted if required. There is definitely a sense of its role as an armoured car being distinctly subsidiary to that of gun tractor. Clearly, with the total lack of above-waist protection, it left much to be desired as an armoured car.

The most interesting aspect of the vehicle's design, however, was that the designer was Walter Wilson. Yes, the Walter Wilson, who later collaborated with William Tritton to design Little Willie and Mother, before going on to design numerous other tanks of the Great War and the great epicyclic gearbox, variations of which which more or less equipped every British tank for the next forty-odd years (it was even the basis of the Chieftan tank's gearbox).

Here's a photo of it outside Armstong's Elswick works:

Interestingly, in 1915, Wilson submitted a sketch design of another four-wheeled vehicle with much larger wheels and fitted with an integral gun, a sort of super-armoured car cum SPG. This was shortly before his involvement with the Landships Committee.

-- Edited by Roger Todd at 18:16, 2006-10-04

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