A brief background to ATV use in the Military

A brief background to ATV use in the Military

Light weight ATV's have been part of the battlefield since their development in the 1950's and 60's under the previous guise of mechanical mules. British forces, or at least specialist elements, have been using them to various degrees of effect for over 40 years. The addition of higher quality and more reliable machines accelerated with leading Japanese manufacturers joining the few well established western Brands. 

Attempts to diversify to diesel (in line with single fuel policies) have also been attempted with limited success. Polaris, Honda and Yamaha have held the line in terms of performance and trust, but it has taken time to develop machines that can stand up to the rigours of warfare.

The Honda TRX 450 and its processors were first to gain favour with the US and UK Special forces before wider adoption across the Marine Corps and Royal Marines in the UK, which became a battle proven capability during the second Gulf War.

After significant trials and evaluation by the British Army, the Yamaha Grizzly 450 was selected under a Urgent Operational Requirement to replace the ageing Honda Fleet with the aim of being fielded into Op TELIC (Iraq) and Op HERRICK (Afghanistan) by mid 2008. They quickly established themselves as an essential part of the force, providing mobility and support in highly contested terrain that prohibited normal vehicle use. The role of CASEVAC, ammunition resupply, movement of heavy or support weapons, ECM coverage, ration delivery, FOB or HLS Taxi and route improvement through bridging, are just some of the many examples, where their use was adapted to fit the needs of the disparate outposts and use cases of the soldiers who manned them. The Logic trailers mk1 - SMT171 and subsequent SMT172B were an essential pairing to enable this activity. The 'Mk2' Yamaha Grizzly's were introduced in late 2010/2011, with only some subtle differences - fender design / storage compartment, single piece frame & an updated rear differential / rear brake.

As with all military vehicles, their life will end in service due to changes in role, threat, condition and size of military, which now gives the chance for them to be privately owned, or to be out back into service in another form. Farmers, Security, Event logistics and Military Collectors are the main owners and users as the fleet is being drawn down, pending a new replacement.

At Military Quads UK we are passionate about all lightweight capabilities have taken on both historic restorations for customers through to designing and providing brand new machines for casualty recovery in Ukraine. So what ever your requirement just get in touch.

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