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Unipower M-series

Special wheeled chassis

Unipower M-series

The Unipower M-series range of military trucks was designed for demanding military applications

 
 
Entered service 1992
Configuration 8x8
Cab seating 1 + 4 men
Dimensions and weight
Weight (curb) ~ 15 t
Maximum load 24 t
Length ~ 10 m
Width 2.99 m
Height 2.95 m
Mobility
Engine Cummins diesel
Engine power 403 hp
Maximum road speed 90 km/h
Range ~ 600 km
Maneuverability
Gradient 60%
Side slope 40%
Vertical step ~ 0.6 m
Trench ~ 1.4 m
Fording over 1 m

 

   The Unipower M-series range of military trucks was developed by Universal Power Drives in the late 1980s. These high mobility trucks were designed for demanding military applications. Trucks were intended to carry specialized equipment and used as heavy equipment transporters. First production vehicles were completed in 1992. Alvis Plc acquired the company in 1994 and the trucks began to be branded as Alvis Unipower.

   The Unipower M-series chassis has a payload capacity of 24 000 kg. It was proposed for the British Army as a Palletized Loading Systems (PLS), BR90 bridgelayer, heavy recovery vehicle and fuel tanker.

   About 190 BR90 bridgelayers and associated bridge section carriers, based on the Unipower M-series trucks were produced. Deliveries of the BR90 commenced in 1997, however other versions received no production orders.

   An all-metal cab accommodates driver, plus 4 passengers. Cab is equipped with independent heater and air conditioning system. Some vehicles have a roof hatch. A roof-mounted machine gun mount can be fitted if required.

   The Unipower M-series trucks are powered either by Cummins M380E 11-liter turbocharged diesel engine, developing 375 hp, or Perkins 410Tx 12.2-liter turbocharged diesel engine, 403 hp. Both engines are coupled with automatic gearboxes. In 1997 a new variant of the M-series was introduced, powered by a more powerful Cummins diesel engine, developing 405 hp. The engine is located behind the cab. On the Unipower M-series trucks the first two pairs of wheels are steered. Vehicles are fitted with a central tyre pressure system. The Unipower M-series have a good cross-country mobility. They can follow tracked vehicles in the most difficult terrain.

   Further development of the M-series was a range of MH-series prime movers. These were heavy duty tank transporters, designed to operate in off-road conditions. These could transport main battle tanks with a maximum weight of 70 t.

   The MH-6600 (6x6) tractor truck was powered by a Cummins KTA-19 19-liter turbocharged diesel engine, developing 600 hp. The MH-8875 (8x8) was powered by a Cummins QSK-19 turbocharged diesel, developing 750 hp. Both vehicles were fitted with a 5-speed automatic transmissions. A fully loaded tank transporter has a maximum road speed of 85 km/h.

   These prime movers were equipped with two loading winches. They were used in conjunction with semi-trailers, specially developed by a French Nicolas company. Cabs of these trucks provide seating for driver, plus 5 passengers.

   A number of MH-6600 6x6 tank transporters with associated semi-trailers have been sold to Oman. The MH-8875 8x8 tank transporter was proposed to the British Army, however the Alvis was eliminated from the bidding process and American Oshkosh M1070 heavy equipment transporter was selected instead.

   A number of other proposed M-series variants received no production orders. In the late 1990s production of Alvis Unipower military trucks stopped due to the lack of orders. By 2000 the M-series was no longer marketed. In 2004 Alvis company was taken over by BAE Systems.

 

 
Unipower M-series

Unipower M-series

Unipower M-series

Unipower MH-6600

Unipower MH-8875

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