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Bucher DURO

Light utility vehicle

Bucher DURO

The Bucher DURO was designed to operate over difficult mountainous terrain

 
 
  DURO I 4x4 DURO I 6x6
Country of origin Switzerland
Entered service 1994 2000
Configuration 4x4 6x6
Cab seating 1 + 1 men
Dimensions and weight
Weight (empty) 2.83 - 2.89 t 3.32 t
Payload capacity 2.9 - 3.1 t 3.1 t
Length 5.07 - 6 m 6.22 m
Width 1.96 m
Height 2.6 m
Mobility
Engine VM Motori diesel
Engine power 150 hp
Maximum road speed 110 km/h
Range 550 km 500 km
Maneuverability
Gradient 80%
Side slope 40%
Vertical step 0.4 m ~ 0.5 m
Trench ~ 0.5 m ~ 0.6 m
Fording 0.8 m

 

   The Bucher DURO (DUrable and RObust) is a Swiss tactical transport vehicle. It was specially designed to meet a Swiss Army requirement. In concept it is broadly similar to an Austrian Pinzgauer. However the DURO is significantly larger and heavier vehicle, that can carry much more payload. Its development began in the 1980s. The Bucher DURO participated in the competition among 15 other vehicles to meet a Swiss Army requirement to replace a fleet of ageing light utility vehicles. Eventually after extensive trials the Bucher DURO was selected as the winner and adopted by the Swiss Army. In 1993 the Swiss Army ordered initial batch of 2 000 DUROs. Production commenced during the same year and first vehicles were delivered in 1994. Deliveries were completed in 1999. A second batch of 1 000 vehicles was subsequently ordered and deliveries were completed in 2001. In 2000-2002 A small number of these vehicles, modified as firefighters, were exported to South Africa (14) and Singapore (61). Other operators are Venezuela (358) and Malaysia (57). In 2003 the Bucher company sold its transport vehicle unit, producing DURO trucks to MOWAG. During the same year MOWAG replaced the original DURO in production with an improved model, called the DURO II.

   This Swiss military vehicle has unusual appearance. The main role of the DURO is to carry troops and supplies over difficult terrain. This vehicle was specially designed to operate in mountainous terrain. The baseline vehicle has a 4x4 configuration. It weights 2.8 t and has a payload capacity of 3 t.

   The DURO was designed as a modular vehicle that could be easily fitted with interchangeable bodies, including fully-enclosed bodies and various shelters. Over 30 interchangeable bodies were proposed, including ambulance, command vehicle, UAV launcher, firefighting bodies. The bodies could be simply swapped by a crane, or using purpose designed lifting legs.

   A baseline open-top troop/cargo body with bench seats at the rear is covered with canvas cover. It can carry up to 14 fully-equipped troops, or alternatively 6 standard pallets. Passengers enter and leave the vehicle via rear doors. The DURO can be used to tow light trailers and artillery pieces with a maximum weight of 3.5 t. The towed load is increased to 5 t with air braked trailer. All models of the DURO had these capabilities.

   This vehicle was available with different wheelbase lengths. The 4x4S version had short wheelbase, while there was also a 4x4L with longer wheelbase. The 4x4 model was soon joined in production by a 6x6 version. It could carry up to 18 fully-equipped troops.

   A fully-enclosed 2-door cab is of aluminum and plastic construction. It accommodates driver and one passenger. A third seat was proposed as an option. The cab is tilted forward for engine access and maintenance.

   The DURO is powered by Italian VM Motori 3.75-liter turbocharged diesel engine, developing 150 hp. There was also a 4.2-liter diesel, developing 160 hp. Engine is located under the cab. It is mated to Mercedes-Benz or Allison 4-speed automatic transmission, which is located at the rear of the vehicle. The DURO has a full-time all-wheel drive. This Swiss vehicle uses a patented stabilizer system, which allows axle twisting on rough terrain. Each wheel can travel independently. Such design resulted in great off-road mobility. Also the DURO proved to be a reliable vehicle. Optional equipment included winch, central tyre inflation system and run-flat tyres.

 

Variants

 

   Bucher DURO or DURO I is an initial production version. It was produced between 1993 and 2001. A total of 3 000 vehicles were delivered to the Swiss Army. The Swiss Army operates this vehicle in more than 40 variants. In 2000-2002 A small number of the DUROs, modified as firefighters, were exported to South Africa (14) and Singapore (61). Between 2001 and 2003 a total of 358 DURO I vehicles were exported to Venezuela. Between 2000 and 2003 a total of 57 DURO I vehicles with 6x6 configuration were exported to Malaysia. These were supplied in kit form for local assembly. A small number of DURO I trucks were obtained by the British armed forces. These were configured as Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) vehicles. In 2003 the Bucher company sold its transport vehicle unit, producing DURO vehicles to MOWAG. Production of the original Bucher DURO I ceased in 2003. During the same year MOWAG launched production of an improved MOWAG DURO II model.

   Upgraded Bucher DURO. The upgrade was developed by MOWAG. In 2016 this vehicle was trialed. In 2017 MOWAG received a contract to upgrade a total of 2 200 Swiss Army DUROs out of 3 000 delivered, to keep them operational. Deliveries of upgraded vehicles commenced in 2017 and are planned to be completed in 2022. These vehicles are fitted with a new Steyr diesel engine, mated to a 8-speed automatic transmission. The cab was modified in a number of areas. Upgraded DUROs have a new rear cargo body, which accommodates up to 12 troops.

   MOWAG DURO II is an improved version. This short-lived vehicle was produced by MOWAG between 2003 and 2007. It was available both with 4x4 and 6x6 configurations. It is fitted with a more powerful Cummins ISB 5.9-liter turbocharged diesel engine, developing 185 hp. The engine is mated to an Allison 5-speed automatic transmission. The DURO II vehicles are slightly larger and heavier. The DURO II was exported to the United Kingdom between 2004 and 2007. Ireland obtained a small number of these vehicles.

   MOWAG DURO III is a further improved version with increased payload capacity. The DURO III was announced in 2003. Initially it was available only with 6x6 configuration. It was fitted with even powerful Cummins ISBe 5.9-liter turbocharged diesel engine, developing 250 hp. It is mated to an uprated Allison 5-speed automatic transmission. In 2006 the DURO III with 4x4 configuration joined the line. This 4x4 model has a maximum payload capacity of 4 200 kg and a road range of 650 km. A small number of DURO III 6x6 vehicles are in service with Switzerland. In 2004 two pre-production vehicles were delivered to United Kingdom for trials and evaluation. Eventually a number of these vehicle, both with 4x4 and 6x6 configuration were exported to the UK.

   MOWAG DURO IIIP is an armored version, available only with 6x6 configuration. It is a multi-purpose transport vehicle, based on the DURO III 6x6. First prototype was completed in 1999. Vehicle is fitted with a fully-enclosed modular shelter, which can be replaced to suit specific mission requirements. It has a payload capacity of 3 000 kg and sufficient internal volume to fulfill a number of roles. Variety of shelter modules can be mounted on a single chassis. Its armor provides protection for the crew against small arms fire and artillery shell splinters. The armor protection is modular and can be added in form of kits, so protection level of the cabin and shelter can be adapted to suit mission requirements. This vehicle also had significant mine protection and withstands explosions equivalent to 6 kg of TNT under any wheel. The DURO IIIP has a crew of 2 and can carry up to 12 troops. This vehicle can be armed with remotely controlled weapon station. The MOWAG DURO IIIP is in service with the Swiss Army, where it is known as DURO GMTF. First vehicles were delivered in 2006-2007. The DURO IIIP has been exported to Denmark. Also it was co-produced in Germany with Rheinmetall for the German army, where it is known as the Yak.

   Bucher LTV is a light utility vehicle, similar in concept to a US HMMWV. It was developed in cooperation with ARIS of Italy and was first publicly revealed in 1998. It was based on the chassis of the DURO I 4x4S. This military vehicle was designed with modularity in mind and could have different body styles. Production of bodies and final assembly was performed in Italy by ARIS. This vehicle was proposed for the Italian Army as the ARIS VAT, however it was not adopted.

 

 

 
Bucher DURO

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Bucher DURO

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Bucher DURO

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Bucher DURO

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Bucher DURO

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Bucher DURO

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Bucher DURO

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Bucher DURO

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Bucher DURO

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Bucher DURO

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