Armored fighting vehicle (or armored fighting vehicle; AFV) is a combat vehicle, which is protected by strong protective covering made of metal and used in combat and armed with weapons, which combines operational mobility, tactical offensive, and defensive capabilities. AFVs can be wheeled or tracked. Armoured fighting vehicles are classified according to their intended role on the battlefield and characteristics.
Initially AFVs were Armoured cars, which were designed after the invention of the normal motor car. Such vehicles were largely used as scouting vehicle, and were equipped to protect the crew or group of army people. The development of the AFV continued when the tracked tank was introduced as a machine that was armoured because it was specifically designed to be fired upon. The tank proved highly successful, and as technology improved the tank became a weapon that could cross large distances at much higher speeds than supporting infantry and artillery. The need to provide the units that would fight alongside the tank led to the development of the wide range of AFVs that exist today, with most armies having vehicles to carry infantry, artillery and anti-aircraft weaponry.
Armoured personnel carriers (APCs) are tracked armoured vehicles that are used for transporting infantry into battle.
Different types of AFV’s:
Main battle tank: The tank is an all terrain AFV designed primarily to engage enemy forces by the use of direct fire in the frontal assault role. These were basically of 3 types i.e Light tanks, Medium tanks, Heavy Tanks. According the usage also the tanks wer named as Cavalry tank, cruiser tank, infantry tank, and breakthrough tank.
Tankette: A tankette is a tracked armed and armoured vehicle resembling a small tank roughly the size of a car, mainly intended for light infantry support or scouting.
Super-heavy tanks: These are the armoured fighting vehicles which are of extreme size, generally over 75 tonnes.
Armoured car: It is a wheeled armoured vehicle, generally lighter than other armoured fighting vehicles, primarily being armoured and/or armed for self-defence of the occupants.
Aerosani: It is a type of propeller-driven snowmobile, running on skis, used for communications, mail deliveries, medical aid, emergency recovery and border patrolling.
Internal security vehicle: An internal security vehicle (ISV), also known as an armoured security vehicle (ASV), is a combat vehicle used for supporting contingency operations.
Improvised fighting vehicle: An improvised fighting vehicle is a combat vehicle resulting from modifications to a civilian or military non-combat vehicle in order to give it a fighting capability.
Infantry fighting vehicle: An infantry fighting vehicle (IFV), also known as a mechanized infantry combat vehicle (MICV), is a type of armoured fighting vehicle used to carry infantry into battle and provide direct fire support.
Armoured engineering vehicle: These vehicles are designed to directly conduct obstacle breaching operations and to conduct other earth-moving and engineering work on the battlefield.
Armoured bulldozer: The armored bulldozer is a basic tool of combat engineering. These combat engineering vehicles combine the earth moving capabilities of the bulldozer with armor which protects the vehicle and its operator in or near combat.
Armoured recovery vehicle: This is a type of vehicle recovery armoured fighting vehicle used to repair battle damaged as well as broken-down armoured vehicles during a fight, or to tow them out of the danger zone for more extensive repairs.
Self-propelled anti-aircraft weapon: An anti-aircraft vehicle, also known as a self-propelled anti-aircraft weapon (SPAA) or self-propelled air defense system (SPAD), is a mobile vehicle with a dedicated anti-aircraft capability.
Self-propelled artillery: These vehicles are highly mobile, usually based on tracked frame carrying either a large field gun or some form of rocket or missile launcher. These are used for long-range indirect bombing support on the battlefield.
Armoured train: An armoured train is a railway train protected with various fighting equipments. Usually equipped with railroad cars armed with artillery and machine guns.
Ground Combat Vehicle (GCV): Its a higher version for AFV’s designed specially for Heavy AFV’s. This Ground Combat Vehicle whcih is being developed by BAE Systems and Northrop Grumman will probably be the heaviest hybrid in existence; it is expected to weigh 140,000 pounds fully-equipped. This uses 20% less fuel than normal vehicles.
The Ground Combat Vehicle is currently under loads of development, with the year unfloding, there will be many changes made in the AFV’s and GCV’s.