Fact file: Gecko RDLV

3998

Type                      
Airborne amphibious 8×8 light rapid deployment logistic vehicle
Numbers:                    
112[1]purchased, all delivered.
Cost:
Associated project names: 
Ambition 1B.
Manufacturer:    
Crayford All Terrain Vehicles/Land Mobility Technologies
Dimensions[2]
·         Length:                         
·         Width:                           
·         Height:                          
·         Wheel base:
·         Ground clearance:      
·         Transportability:         
·         3.340m (Gecko), 2.860m (trailer).
·         1.660m (Gecko), 1.725m (trailer).
·         1.380m (Gecko), 0.712m (trailer).
·         Not known.
·         0.16m (Gecko), 0.235m (trailer).
·         C130B: internal; Oryx: slung.
Mass
·         Tare:             
·         Payload:       
·         GVM:
·         0.430mt (trailer).
·         0.9mt (Gecko), 0.6mt (trailer).
·         1.03mt
Seating:                
Four seats, including drivers`.
Fuel:                                      
50 litres
Water for crew:   
None
Protection levels
·         Ballistic:       
·         Mine:            
·         None.
·         Limited; 200g TNT under any wheel.
Performance:
·         Top speed:   
·         Range on single refueling:      
·         Acceleration:               
·         Turning circle:
·         Ground pressure:
·         Power/mass ratio:       
·         Capability:
·         45km/h.
·         200km.
·         Not known.
·         Own length (without trailer).
·         Not known.
·         Not known.
·         Can climb a 0.3m vertical step..
·         Can cross a 0.6m wide trench.
·         Fording ability: Fully amphibious.
·         Can climb a gradient of 60 degrees in low range, 30 degrees in high range when fully loaded; 40 degrees fully loaded with trailer.
·         Can traverse a gradient of 40 degrees loaded, static or @ 10km/h.
Drive train
·         Engine:         
·         Transmission:              
·         Transfer:      
·         Steering:               
·         Diahatsu DM950T, 26kW @ 3600rpm.                
·         Variable ratio belt driven clutch.
·         Chain drive to four axles.
·         Hydrostatic skid steering.
Armament:          
Pintle-mounted GPMG 
Comment:
Crayford All Terrain Vehicles (Pty) Ltd won a contract for the vehicles in 2002 and delivery started in 2003. LMT of Pretoria designed and built a variety of trailers for the vehicle, the most important being a flatbed cargo carrier that can be fitted with a command and control “pod” and a separate design mounting a 106mm recoilless gun.
The C2 pod satisfies the needs of a battalion headquarters. Production of the vehicles was at Atlantis-based Agrid SA. The design was based on the automotive components of the Argo Centaur 8×8 built by Ontario Drive & Gear in Canada. The top structure was redesigned and the hull reinforced.
The Gecko is fully amphibious after preparation, which includes fitting inflatable pontoons stored in the hull and inflated using the exhaust system.
Logistic support was developed to MIL-STD-1388-2B and DEF-STAN—0060 levels, but a source told the author in 2006 that only 30 of the platforms were in limited use because the SANDF had failed to purchase adequate logistic support with the acquisition.
The bulk of the vehicles were brand new and as-yet unused although their three-year warranties have expired. LMT took over responsibility for the entire programme and the Gecko`s through-life support in March 2005,as well as the intellectual property and international marketing rights[3].   


[1] 104 with 44 Para Regt, eight with the Special Forces.
[2] As provided by LMT.
[3] Gecko, VEG, 7th Issue, Birchleigh, Johannesburg, 2006.