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2 1/2 Ton 4x4 "Gunship" Truck


Country of Origin/Used by: Ireland
First Produced/Service Dates: 1983-1993
Manufactured by: ACMAT - Ateliers de Construction Mechanique de l'Atlantique (France)
Crew: 2+8
Armament: (3) GPMG 7.62mm machine guns normally fitted. However, a .5 inch Browning HMG could also be mounted if needed.
Engine: 6-Cylinder Diesel
Miscellaneous Info: (16) ACMAT VLRA TPK420 SM3 2.5ton 4x4 lorries were delivered to Eire from France originally to be used as gun towing vehicles (particularly for L118 105mm Light guns).  Also, an additional bit of trivia, the ACMAT VLRA was also used by the British SAS in the first Gulf War.

The "gunships" served in Somalia with the Irish Contingent in 1993. The Irish contingent sent to Somalia were the 1st Transport Company, which were a unit that ferried materials & supplies between Bidoa & Mogadishu.  Two of these ACMATs were used on each transport convoy, one at the front and one at the rear.The Irish Contingent were the Last "western" UN peace keepers to leave Somalia. 

Each ACMAT is equipped with a 200-litre drinking water tank located under the rear body between the chassis side members. Roll Bars and gunner seats were added after the initial deliveries to Ireland.  While serving in Somalia, steel armored plates were later placed in the rear of the truck behind the troop carrying seat to prevent damage in the event of being hit by fire (which did happen). Also sand bags were placed on the floor bed of the trucks (front and rear) in an attempt to limit damage in the event of the vehicle striking a mine or explosive device beneath the vehicle.

Data Sheet Available:   None Available


Reference Source/Provider
Irish VLRA ACMAT TPK 420 4x4 "Gun Ship" Truck Photos Roy Kinsella - Dublin, Ireland

References Available


Reference Source/Provider


Reference Author
"Francophile" (ACMAT Manufactured wheeled vehicles) - (June 2013 Issue of Military Machines International Magazine) Shaun Connors
Irish Army Vehicles: Transport & Armor Since 1922 Karl Martin

Hobby Modeling

Kits and Accessories

Model Kit Manufacturer Scale Other Information
ACMAT VLRA Truck Model Kit Masters Productions 1/35 Resin.
ACMAT VLRA TDE 4.36 2 Commando Light Vehicle model kit (GAS50216) Gaso.line 1/48 Multi-Media.
ACMAT VLRA Truck Model Kit (HK-10101) Personnel Carrier H&K-87 1/87 Resin. Out of Production.
ACMAT VLRA Truck Model Kit (HK- 10102) Cargo Carrier H&K-87 1/87 Resin. Out of Production.
Aftermarket Set Manufacturer Scale Other Information
ACMAT VLRA /Bastion XZL Michelin 365/80 R20  Tire and Wheel Set (GAS50557) Gaso.line 1/48 Rubber.

Model Photos

Reference Source/Provider
Irish ACMAT VLRA "Gunship" -1993 Somalia Model Photos (Converted 1/35 Masters Productions Kit) Roy Kinsella - Dublin, Ireland