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Great Britain's Humber Armored Cars

Design

The Humber armored car was originally the Guy Mk I on the Karrier KT4 chassis, but the design and development was taken over by the Rootes Group.

Armament

Some Humbers had an anti-aircraft mount that allowed for a Vickers K machine gun to be fired from inside.

Production

Guy started production of the Humber, but as it was to be dedicated to producing light tanks, production was moved to Rootes Group and Karrier Motors Limited. Guy did provided armored hulls and turrets.

After production started the armored car received the Humber Mk I name.

  • Humber Mk I: 500
  • Humber Mk II:
  • Humber Mk III:
    • Production started in early 1942
  • Humber Mk IV:
  • Total: 5,400
    • Manufacturer: Guy, Rootes Group, Karrier Motors Limited at Luton
  • Armoured Car Mk I Fox I: 200

Variants

  • Humber Mk I: Had a welded hull. Two 7.92 mm Besa machine guns.
  • Humber Mk I AA: Had four Besa 7.62 mm machine guns in a modified turret. First used in 1943 but withdrawn in 1944 due to lack of need.
  • Humber Mk II: The radiator at the rear of the vehicle was improved. The front glacis plate was improved.
  • Humber Mk III: Larger turret which added a crew member.
  • Humber Mk IV: Added 37 mm gun and reduced crew to 3. To help the driver see behind in while going in reverse there was a lever that opened a slot in the rear.
  • Humber Rear Link: Mk III converted to carry extra radio equipment with a fixed turret and dummy gun.
  • Armoured Car Mk I Fox I: Canadian version.

Usage

First used in North Africa in late 1941.

Most Numerous British Armored Car

60% of all British armored cars used in World War II were Humbers.

Post World War II Usage

Some countries used Humbers into the 1960s.

Specifications

  Humber
Crew 3
Physical Characteristics  
Weight 15,070 lb
6,850 kg
Length 15'
4.572 m
Height 7' 10"
2.34 m
Width 7' 2"
2.184 m
Ground clearance  
Ground pressure  
Turret ring diameter  
Armament  
Main 1: 15 mm
Secondary  
MG 1: 7.92 mm Besa MG
Side arms  
Quantity  
Main  
Secondary  
MG  
Side arms  
Armor Thickness (mm) 14.5 - 30
Hull Front, Upper  
Hull Front, Lower  
Hull Sides, Upper  
Hull Sides, Lower  
Hull Rear  
Hull Top  
Hull Bottom  
Turret Front  
Turret Sides  
Turret Rear  
Turret Top  
Engine (Make / Model) Rootes
Cylinders 6
Net HP 90
Cooling Water
Transmission (type)  
Fuel (type) Gasoline
Octane  
Capacity  
Performance  
Traverse  
Speed - Road 45 mph
72 kph
Speed - Cross Country  
Range - Road 250 miles
402 km
Range - Cross Country  
Turning radius  
Elevation limits  
Fording depth 2'
0.6 m
Trench crossing 4'
1.22 m
Vertical obstacle 1' 9"
0.533 m
Tires  
  Humber Mk I
Crew 3
Commander, driver, gunner
Physical Characteristics  
Weight 6.85 tons
Length  
Height  
Width  
Ground clearance  
Ground pressure  
Turret ring diameter  
Armament  
Main 15 mm Besa
Secondary 2: Besa MG
MG 7.92 mm MG
Side arms  
Quantity  
Main  
Secondary  
MG  
Side arms  
Armor Thickness (mm)  
Hull Front, Upper  
Hull Front, Lower  
Hull Sides, Upper  
Hull Sides, Lower  
Hull Rear  
Hull Top  
Hull Bottom  
Turret Front  
Turret Sides  
Turret Rear  
Turret Top  
Engine (Make / Model)  
Cylinders  
Net HP  
Cooling  
Transmission  
Fuel type  
Octane  
Capacity  
Performance  
Traverse  
Speed - Road  
Speed - Cross Country  
Range - Road  
Range - Cross Country  
Turning radius  
Elevation limits  
Fording depth  
Trench crossing  
Vertical obstacle  
Tires  
  Humber Mk II
Crew 3
Physical Characteristics  
Weight 7.1 tons
7,213 kg
Length 15'
4.57 m
Height 7' 10"
2.34 m
Width 7' 2"
2.18 m
Ground clearance  
Ground pressure  
Turret ring diameter  
Armament  
Main 1: 0.59" Besa MG
1: 15 mm Besa MG
Secondary  
MG  
MG - coaxial 1: 0.312" Besa MG
1: 7.92 mm MG
Side arms 1: 0.303" Bren light MG
1: 7.7 mm Bren light MG
Quantity  
Main  
Secondary  
MG  
Side arms  
Armor Thickness (mm) 15
Hull Front, Upper  
Hull Front, Lower  
Hull Sides, Upper  
Hull Sides, Lower  
Hull Rear  
Hull Top  
Hull Bottom  
Turret Front  
Turret Sides  
Turret Rear  
Turret Top  
Engine (Make / Model) Rootes
Cylinders 6
Net HP 95
Cooling  
Transmission  
Fuel type Gasoline
Octane  
Capacity  
Performance  
Traverse  
Speed - Road 45 mph
72 kph
Speed - Cross Country  
Range - Road 250 miles
402 km
Range - Cross Country  
Turning radius  
Elevation limits  
Fording depth  
Trench crossing  
Vertical obstacle  
Tires  
  Humber Mk III
Crew 4
Physical Characteristics  
Weight 7.1 tons
7,213 kg
Length 15'
4.57 m
Height 7' 10"
2.34 m
Width 7' 2"
2.18 m
Ground clearance  
Ground pressure  
Turret ring diameter  
Armament  
Main 1: 0.59" Besa MG
1: 15 mm Besa MG
Secondary  
MG  
MG - coaxial 1: 0.312" Besa MG
1: 7.92 mm MG
Side arms 1: 0.303" Bren light MG
1: 7.7 mm Bren light MG
Quantity  
Main  
Secondary  
MG  
Side arms  
Armor Thickness (mm) 15
Hull Front, Upper  
Hull Front, Lower  
Hull Sides, Upper  
Hull Sides, Lower  
Hull Rear  
Hull Top  
Hull Bottom  
Turret Front  
Turret Sides  
Turret Rear  
Turret Top  
Engine (Make / Model) Rootes
Cylinders 6
Net HP 95
Cooling  
Transmission  
Fuel type Gasoline
Octane  
Capacity  
Performance  
Traverse  
Speed - Road 45 mph
72 kph
Speed - Cross Country  
Range - Road 250 miles
402 km
Range - Cross Country  
Turning radius  
Elevation limits  
Fording depth  
Trench crossing  
Vertical obstacle  
Tires  
  Humber Mk IV
Crew 3
Physical Characteristics  
Weight 7.1 tons
7,213 kg
Length 15'
4.57 m
Height 7' 10"
2.34 m
Width 7' 2"
2.18 m
Ground clearance  
Ground pressure  
Turret ring diameter  
Armament  
Main 37 mm
Secondary  
MG  
MG - coaxial 1: 0.312" Besa MG
1: 7.92 mm MG
Side arms 1: 0.303" Bren light MG
1: 7.7 mm Bren light MG
Quantity  
Main  
Secondary  
MG  
Side arms  
Armor Thickness (mm) 15
Hull Front, Upper  
Hull Front, Lower  
Hull Sides, Upper  
Hull Sides, Lower  
Hull Rear  
Hull Top  
Hull Bottom  
Turret Front  
Turret Sides  
Turret Rear  
Turret Top  
Engine (Make / Model) Rootes
Cylinders 6
Net HP 95
Cooling  
Transmission  
Fuel type Gasoline
Octane  
Capacity  
Performance  
Traverse  
Speed - Road 45 mph
72 kph
Speed - Cross Country  
Range - Road 250 miles
402 km
Range - Cross Country  
Turning radius  
Elevation limits  
Fording depth  
Trench crossing  
Vertical obstacle  
Tires  

Sources:

  1. The Encyclopedia of Tanks and Armored Fighting Vehicles - The Comprehensive Guide to Over 900 Armored Fighting Vehicles From 1915 to the Present Day, General Editor: Christopher F. Foss, 2002
  2. The Encyclopedia of Weapons of World War II, Chris Bishop, 1998
  3. World Encyclopedia of Armored Fighting Vehicles, Jack Livesey, 2006
  4. Armored Fighting Vehicles, 300 of the World's Greatest Military Vehicles, Philip Trewhitt, 1999
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site