We are accustomed to see military vehicles in videos or pictures on various media platforms or in best case – parades or museums. The most interesting part of this, however, is that only few know that some of the military vehicles are available for general public, if the fuel consumption is not an issue for you. Anyone with money and desire can become an owner of these 10 military transportation units. All of them can be used on road, just like any other mass production vehicle. Some of them are still being produced by manufacturers, but some, not surprisingly, have become valuable items among private collectors.
Unimog or Universal-Motor-Gerät in German is an AWD or all-wheel drive, multi-purpose truck produced by Mercedes-Benz. Its production started in 1951 and is still continuing. Various military armies use it in all continents, hence in various terrains and climate conditions. At this moment, it can be purchased in one of three variations which are used for civilian purposes, mainly off road expeditions and adventure trips. With a variety of tailor made interior and accessories the price of Unimog car reach mind blowing $250k.
Humvee or High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle in full name is our nations pride and honor! It’s an AM General production military off road car that was later introduced under a separate Hummer brand. Production of Humvee’s started in 1984 and initially was used only by US Army, then it became available to other country armies and only then to any civilian. First individual to get one was the legendary Hollywood actor, lead actor of blockbusters Terminator and Commando, Arnold Schwarzenegger. It wasn’t an easy transaction, but popular star who is a huge fan of all that is military related, succeeded. Shortly after this, an interest towards the particular vehicle appeared in others, so AM General decided to introduce Hummer H1 as a civilian version of Humvee.
In 1960 Czechoslovak company Tetra introduced the very first AWD prototype of model 183, but shortly after the initial trials company’s engineers decided to increase the number of wheels to eight. All four axes are active. However, the modular building platform has allowed customers to get this all-wheel drive beast with four, six or eight wheels.
This V12 engine vehicle was available not only for military buyers, but private as well. The only difference between those was that the military version could run either on petrol, diesel, aviation fuel or a mix of them all in any proportions.
This top wouldn’t be complete without a mention of an amphibian. TPZ that stands for armored transport in german Transportpanzer, but Fuchs – for fox. This amphibian was developed by Daimler-Benz and introduced to clients in 1979. Its production has continued ever since.
With a V8 diesel engine under the hood, this 320 horsepower 18 ton armor vehicle is able to reach 65 miles per hour maximum speed. With a full fuel tank it can drive up to 500 miles. This amphibian is distinguished by its mobility and quietness. Maximum speed in the water is around 6.2 mph.
Volvo TP21 Sugga
In last century fifties the Swedish army used Volvo TP21 to transport military radio communication equipment in off road conditions. Rounded front side of the body and the rear part was the reason it got a nickname Sugga. Translated from Swedish it means sow (piglet mother).
Nowadays TP21 is a popular object among collectors of military equipment, off-road riders and Volvo brand lovers alike. For example, world recognized brand of energy drinks Red Bull use the current car model as a DJ platform in their events in USA and Europe and maybe somewhere else, too.
NSU SdKfz 2
NSU SdKfz 2 also known as Kettenkrad HK 101 is the smallest caterpillar tracker in the German army that could also be transported in the relatively small Junkers Ju 52 plane. Normally this military transport was used to transport inventory on mainland. Its maximums speed is astonishing 45 mph.
Due to trackers that function as the wheels, it can’t be used on asphalt roads (as it damages the surface of road), but since the Second World War it’s widely used in agriculture. So, if not on city streets, then on rural roads it’s clear that civil persons have covered long distances.
Volkswagen Type 183 which is widely known as the Iltis is a military off road AWD car introduced in 1978 by German car maker Volkswagen after an order from German army.
Suspension parts for Iltis were borrowed from Audi 100 model and so was the 1.7 liter four cylinder engine with 75 hoursepower. Interesting is a fact that Iltis AWD system was later on adopted by Audi and became the basis of Audi Quattro system that debuted in 1980. Before this, Audi modified Iltis won the world famous Paris – Dakar Rally.
Until 1988, when the production of Iltis was terminated, more than 10 000 vehicles were manufactured and sold. Only a small part of them, however, have been preserved till this day.
The American company Oshkosh production HEMTT (Heavy Expanded Mobility Tactical Truck) is available in many variations from 1982. In any of the variations it’s equipped with 8 wheel AWD system. In the essence it’s a vehicle for heavy cargo transportation in military purposes.
Despite its enormous dimensions and huge weight of 17 tons, HEMTT is relatively economical. Well, at least for such a vehicle type. It comes with a powerful 445 hp American 12.0 liter turbo diesel engine. With a full tank (you can get there 587 liters of diesel) it can drive as much as 400 mile distance. Top speed this war machine can reach is 65 mph.
HEMTT civilian versions can mostly be found at airports or fire depos. The price isn’t too sweet: depending on the version can cost as much as $135k.
Daimler Ferret was made in 1949 when after the Second World War the British army had a need to update their light armored car park. For this task car maker Daimler was hired. Mostly because of their success with the previous model called Dingo. To note, Daimler is not a military manufacturer, but is engaged in a luxury limousine production.
Ferret was a four wheel drive vehicle equipped with run flat tires that allowed to move even after the tires were damaged in a battlefield. Normally, this vehicle was armored with a machine gun and six grenade launchers.
But Daimler Ferret was not only usable in large terrains; thanks to its small dimensions it was quick in cities as well. As of now, the British army no longer uses it. However, model is exceptionally popular among collectors mainly due to the fact that it is relatively cheap. Price range, depending on the condition, can vary from $15k to $45k.
From the military vehicles listed above Chenowth ALSV (Advanced Light Strike Vehicle) certainly has the superior steering and can bring the biggest driving pleasure. This 1996 production is lightweight, relatively fast and can be driven on any road surface.
This all-wheel drive car has a power steering and a 160 hp Porsche diesel engine, but there are also petrol versions available for purchase. One and a half tons heavy SUV needs around four seconds to accelerate to 35mph.