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Foden DROPS

Heavy utility truck

Foden DROPS

The Foden DROPS military truck was designed for off-road application

 
 
Entered service 1994
Configuration 8x6
Cab seating 1 + 1 men
Dimensions and weight
Weight (empty) ~ 14 t
Maximum load 15 t
Length 9.5 m
Width 2.9 m
Height 3.4 m
Mobility
Engine Perkins Eagle 350MX
Engine power 350 hp
Maximum road speed ~ 70 km/h
Range ~ 450 km
Maneuverability
Gradient 60%
Side slope 30%
Vertical step ~ 0.6 m
Trench up to 2 m
Fording at least 1 m

 

   The Foden DROPS or Demountable Rack Offload and Pickup System was developed to meet the British Army requirement. The Foden proposed two vehicles for evaluation, referred as the MMLC (Medium Mobility Load Carrier) and IMMLC (Improved Medium Mobility Load Carrier) due to their payload equivalent to a medium load. The Foden IMMLC was selected for production, commencing in 1994. British Army ordered over 400 of these vehicles.

   The Foden DROPS has 8x6 configuration. It is a versatile logistic support vehicle, designed for off-road application and capable of transporting large quantities of various loads to front-line troops. Its original role is to supply ammunition to the AS90 155-mm self-propelled howitzers. However in service these vehicles were used for a wider range of applications. Vehicle can carry up to 15 000 kg of palletized stores. This military truck is fitted with the Multilift Mk.4 load handling system, which loads and unloads flatracks rapidly. Vehicle can also tow a long-wheelbase trailer with a maximum weight of about 15 000 kg. This trailer was intended to transport replacement engines for the AS90 artillery systems. The trailer can be also used to carry standard 20 ft ISO containers.

   The driver controls the hook arm, which lowers and lifts the flatrack onto the vehicle. It can also move loads on the ground. Loading or unloading takes about 30 seconds. Vehicle can be fitted with equipment for loading or unloading railway wagons.

   The Foden DROPS is powered by a Perkins Eagle 350MX turbocharged diesel engine, developing 350 hp. Engine is coupled with ZF 6-speed automatic transmission. First two axles are steered. This military truck has good cross country mobility. Interestingly because of limited funding all Foden DROPS vehicles were limited in their design to operate effectively only in European climatic conditions.

   A slightly different Foden DROPS vehicle is used to carry COBRA counter-battery radar system.

   Production of all Foden brand trucks ceased in 2006. It was expected that in 2007 a programme to refurbish 50% of operational Foden DROPS vehicles will be launched. However this did not happen. The Foden trucks are being replaced by new MAN HX77 8x8 trucks, fitted with load handling systems.

 

 
Foden DROPS

Foden DROPS

Foden DROPS

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