At the 1944 the situation for the R.S.I. it’s not exactly the best between the Allies approaching from the south and the partisans increasing their attacks on the Nazi-fascists. A division of Blackshirts took one of the few trucks available, a Lancia 3Ro, and armored it within a month. The armored car was built by the Piacenza Arsenal together with various other vehicles, but the others will perhaps be mentioned in other suggestions. The vehicle was nicknamed “the Duce’s last armored car”, received 9 mm thick armor on all sides and a single-seat cylindrical turret. Furthermore, the writing “XXXVI° BLACK BRIGATA NATALE PIACENTINI LUCCA” was painted on the sides of the vehicle and on the doors two lions were painted on the cabin.The vehicle was used from October 1944 until the first months of 1945 as an armored car for anti-partisan patrols, then joined a convoy of republican forces headed for Como, to then go to Menaggio to escort Benito Mussolini until in Merano. On 27 April 1945 the vehicle was immobilized during a fire fight with the partisans. It was then taken to Milan to a foundry, where it was arranged and placed for many years in Dongo as a symbol of the victory against fascism and in the 1960s it was probably scrapped.
Armament and propulsion
The vehicle was armed with three 8 mm machine guns and a Scotti-Isotta Fraschini 20/70. The machine guns were mounted on ball mounts, and the cannon was fixed in the turret. The elevation of the gun was very high, but the number of rounds carried is not known.
Speaking of the engine, the vehicle was equipped with a 5-cylinder Lancia Tipo 102 diesel engine delivering 93 HP which allowed the vehicle to reach a maximum speed of 45 km/h and could overcome slopes of up to 26%.
Dimensions: 7,25 x 2,35 x around 4 meters
Total weight: 8 tonnes
Crew: 7 (driver, vehicle commander/machine gunner, 2x gunners, 2x loaders)
Propulsion: Lancia Type 102 diesel, 5 cylinder
Speed: 40 km/h
Range: 400 km
Armament: 1x Scotti-Isotta Fraschini 20/70 Mod. 1939 and 3x 8 mm machine guns (two Breda 38 and one Breda 37)
Armor: around 9 mm
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