Alvis Scorpion IFV (Helio FVT925)
In 1998, France was looking for a turret to equip their VCBI IFV program in order to replace their ageing AMX-10P fleet. Part of this process involved the development or acquisition of a turret to be mounted atop the VCBI platform. Two Turrets proved promising to the French for trials that being the GIAT Draggar and the British Helio FVT925. Because of this in 1998 the french awarded contracts to both companies to trial their respective turrets, to see if either was suitable for the VCBI program.
In order to compete for this tender Helio fitted their FVT925 turret equipt with a 25mm M242 Bushmaster cannon to a Scorpion chassis creating a proof of concept that would be suitable for extensive trials in France. The successful contender would then be awarded a contract for three turrets that would hopefully allow the VCBI to enter pre-production in the year 2000. Helio was relatively confident with their turret system, as it had already seen moderate success as an export unit to the Philippines, where it was fitted to the GKN Simba, along with another IFV project for New Zealand.
The one-man turret weighs in t 1,700 kg, and offers all-round protection against 7.62mm AP rounds from 30m and 5.56mm AP from point blank range, along with a 90% survival chance from a 155mm HE overhead shell burst from 30m. Unfortunately for the design, the French would ultimately select the Giat offering after trials and demonstrations, leaving the Helio equipt Scorpion one of several often forgotten test demonstrators of the Helio company, which would be used for further marketing of their systems before being disassembled and repurposed for other weapon systems as appropriate.
Mass 17,800 lb (8.074 tonnes)
Length 5.288 m (17 ft 4.2 in)
Width 2.134 m (7 ft 0 in)
Height 2.102 m (6 ft 10.8 in)
Armour Aluminium armour, Cast and 1318b plate
Main armament 25 mm M242 Bushmaster cannon
Secondary armament 1 x Coaxial 7.62 mm L43A1 machine gun
16 x smoke dischargers
provision to carry a single tube tow launcher
Engine Cummins BTA 5.9-litre (diesel) 190 hp (140 kW)
Power/weight 22.92 hp (17.3 kW) / tonne
Transmission Self Change Gears TN15X
Operational range 756 km (470 mi)
Maximum speed 72.5 km/h (45.0 mph)
Additional photo and specification for Helio 925 turret:
- Jane’s IDR 1998
- FV101 Scorpion - Wikipedia (wiki page for the scorpion )
- https://www.google.com/search?q=+helio+925+turret&tbm=isch&ved=2ahUKEwi82pD7s-eBAxXQkicCHdqzAQgQ2-cCegQIABAA&oq=+helio+925+turret&gs_lcp=CgNpbWcQA1ChEFihEGDgEWgAcAB4AIABSIgBgwGSAQEymAEAoAEBqgELZ3dzLXdpei1pbWfAAQE&sclient=img&ei=jCAjZbzkD9ClnsEP2ueGQA&bih=619&biw=1360#imgrc=AOWw_2Bz5lQ3PM (Source of turret info)