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M577

Armored command vehicle

M577

The M577 command post vehicle is used as a tactical operations center

 
 
Entered service Early 1960s
Crew 5 men
Dimensions and weight
Weight 11.6 t
Length 4.86 m
Width 2.68 m
Height 2.7 m
Armament
Machine guns -
Mobility
Engine Chrysler 75M petrol
Engine power 209 hp
Maximum road speed 58 km/h
Amphibious speed on water ~ 5 km/h
Range 480 km
Maneuverability
Gradient 60%
Side slope 40%
Vertical step 0.61 m
Trench 1.68 m
Fording Amphibious

 

   The M577 is a US tracked armored command post vehicle. It is based on an M113 armored personnel carrier chassis and is a member of the same vehicle family. First 4 prototypes, known as XM577, were converted from M113 APCs. Production began in the early 1960s. The M577 has been exported to a number of countries. Largest operators are Egypt (44), Greece (45) and Portugal (28). It has been license-produced in Italy by Oto Melara. Despite its age the M577 is still used around the world.

   The M577 is basically an M113 with a raised rear part of the roofline. This vehicle is used as a tactical operations center.

   Hull of this armored vehicle is welded of aluminum armor. Up to 40% of vehicle components are manufactured from light alloys. It allowed to save weight. Armor of this vehicle provides protection against small arms fire and artillery shell splinters. Vehicle is also fitted with NBC protection system.

   Vehicle has a crew of 5, including the driver. Crew enter and leave the vehicle via rear power-operated ramp with integral door. There is a commander's hatch.

   The M577 has a tent extension. It is attached at the rear, when vehicle is stationary. It provides additional work space for command staff. Furthermore multiple M577 command vehicles can be connected via the tents. In traveling order the tent is carried on top of the vehicle. Onboard the vehicle there are map boards, folding tables, computers, radio and other command and control equipment.

   This command vehicle has a hand-cranked extendible antenna for long-range communications.

   The M577 is also fitted with external diesel generator. It is mounted at the front of the vehicle and develops 4.2 kW to provide 24 volt power. The generator powers all electronic systems and communication equipment when the main engine is turned off. Electricity can be also exported. A single generator provides enough power for two M577 vehicles. If required the generator can be removed from the vehicle using onboard davit, and used as a stationary unit.

   This command vehicle has no defensive weapons.

   Engine is located at the front of the vehicle on the right side. Initial production M577 were powered by a Chrysler 75M petrol engine, developing 209 hp. It was mated with a manual gearbox. However soon improved production version of the M577 were fitted with General Motors 6V53T diesel developing 275 hp, that was mated with an automatic gearbox. It is worth mentioning that engine compartment is fitted with a fire extinguishing system. It is manually operated by the driver. It can be also activated from outside of the vehicle. The M577 has an additional fuel tank, mainly for the generator. This armored vehicle has good cross-country mobility. It can travel over sand, snow and mud.

   Despite its bulky appearance this vehicle is fully-amphibious. On water it is propelled by its tracks.

   Although the M577 was developed as a command post vehicle it was also used for other roles. Due to its large internal volume it was used as an armored ambulance, medical treatment vehicle, fire direction center and for other roles.

   Some user nations have added their own modifications to this armored command vehicle. Italian license-produced version has some minor differences. Some of the countries, including Egypt and Germany, have their own specialized versions, of the M577.

 

Variants

 

   M577 initial production version. A total of 1 152 units were built when production switched to improved M277A1 version;

   M577A1. Improved production version. Improvements are similar to those of the M113A1 APC. It is powered by a Detroit Diesel engine, that replaced the original petrol engine. This version was fitted with an automatic gearbox. A total of 3 863 units were built;

   M577A2. Improved production version. Improvements are similar to those of the M113A2 APC. It has a reinforces suspension and improved cooling systems. A total of 2 417 units were built;

   M577A3. Upgraded version. It is fitted with the Reliability Improved Selected Equipment (RISE) powerpack;

   Mugaf, Israeli designation of the M577;

   NM196 medical treatment version of the M577A2, used by Norwegian armed forces;

   NM198 modified command post vehicle, used by Norwegian armed forces;

   CM-26 command post vehicle, used by Taiwan;

   M1063 Standard Integrated Command Post System (SICPS). It is an upgraded version of the M577A2 and M577A3 vehicles, fitted with conversion kit. This kit consists of new auxiliary power unit, new tent extension, improved electrical systems and electronic equipment, telescopic antenna mast, and improved NBC protection system. The XM1063 prototype was trialed by the US Army in 1991 during Operation Desert Storm. Production contract for 162 upgrade kits was awarded in 1992. In 1993 the kit quantity was increased to 330 units. Conversion process took place in depots where existing M577 vehicles were upgraded to M1063 configuration.

 

 
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