Marmon-Herrington Armoured Car Mk. II (canon de 25 mm SA mle 1934)

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Marmon-Herrington Armoured Car Mk. II (canon de 25 mm SA mle 1934)


Vehicle design and service history:

In the early months of 1938, authorities in South Africa began funding the development of a new armoured car for their defence that could be manufactured locally. The initial progress was slow, but with the outbreak of the second world war, a vehicle was rapidly designed using the knockdown kits of the ford 3-ton truck chassis. This was due to SA completely lacking a locally developed automotive industry, leaving them dependent on imported vehicles to supplement their needs, with bodywork often done locally. The chassis was chosen, as it could be readily purchased from Ford Canada, which was further supplemented by a four-wheel drive train produced by the American firm Marmon-Herrington, resulting in its designation. The armament would be produced in the UK, except for the Browning machinegun, with only the armoured plates being produced locally at the South African Iron & Steel Industrial Corporation, ISCOR. With all the components accounted for the final assembly would then be done at the local manufacturing facility of the Dorman Long company, though it was designed in such a way that cottage industry production was possible as required.

Because of this simplified design the first version of the “South African Reconnaissance Vehicle” Mk I, was ready to enter service in 1940. The vehicle in question was a long-wheelbase four-wheel chassis, with the drive initially to only one axle. The armament was rather lacking, being just two Vickers machine guns, but even so it saw action against the Italians in the western desert before being swiftly relegated to training units, when the MK II became more readily available.

The MK II possessed a shorter wheelbase, and was the first variant to be fitted with 4 wheel drive. This vehicle was known as the Armoured Car, Marmon-Herrington Mk II in British service. It was also known as the “Middle East Model” to denote it serving with the British in the North Africa Campaign. This variant was fitted with a Boys AT rifle, and a single coax Bren gun. A rarer variant was also made known as the Sub-Saharan Model, which was again armed with twin Vickers machine guns.

This Boys equipt variant would see extensive combat usage in North Africa, due to its reliability and large numbers. Issues were found with the anti-armour capability of the Boys rifle rather quickly, and due to being both under-gunned and rather light it was not uncommon to see the car’s up-gunned with German, Vichy French or Italian weaponry, which were captured in large quantities during the desert engagements. Due to the turret lacking any provision for larger armament, the turret was simply removed, leaving the crew members dependent on the gun shield of the mounted gun for protection. A documented Field modification involved the mating of the 25mm Hotchkiss anti-tank gun to the MK.II chassis. This modification was used by both the British and the Free French during the North Africa campaign, in a similar manner to the Breda 20mm field modification, with 2 per unit, based on demand and availability like with all of the up-gunned Harringtons constructed by local motor pools, and the modifications would often be removed by the time they returned to British motor pools. These vehicles were soon superseded once more heavy six-pounder equipt armoured cars became available such as the AEC MK.II and were relegated to secondary roles.

Due to this limited and unsanctioned service, most of the up-gunned Harringtons are poorly photographed, but this example can be confirmed thanks to a German captured example, which can be seen in the photos overseeing some captured British prisoners for propaganda purposes.

Vehicle specification:

Mass 6.4 tonnes

Length 15 ft (5.51 m)

Width 6 ft (1.83 m)

Height 7 ft (2.29 m)

Crew 4

Armour up to 20 mm

Main armament 1x canon de 25 mm SA mle 1934

Secondary armament: 1 x Vickers machine gun

Engine Ford V-8 petrol (95 horsepower (71 kW))

Power/weight 14.2 hp/tonne

Suspension wheeled; 4 x 4 drive

Operational range 200 miles (322 km)

Maximum speed 50 mph (80 km/h)

Additional historical photo:



We need Mormon Herrington Dutch Order model

It’d be a fun low-tier British/SA tank destroyer! +1

Looks like the distant cousin of Leichter Panzerspähwagen, Sonderkraftfahrzeug 221 (schwere Panzerbüchse 41, 28/20cm). Awesome, +1!

Well to be the boring guy this is not exactly the same modification as the Free French took more time to modify theirs , resulting in a more protected variant


Sooo… we can get two variants? Gimme! :D

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both British and the French-operated ones based on the mk.II and III, it is currently in my queue of suggestions, as there is an evolution to the 25mm technicals ;)

the mk.III came with a better turret, so versions of that that were upgunned straight up had a fully traverseable turret, whereas the ones based on the mk.2 were effectively casemates

once i clear the Harringtons i might mention and make a suggestion for the universal carrier with the 25mm, which was the french stop gap until they were given Harringtons. the one pictured is one in British use though, as the 8th army allocated vehicles based on demand, but they were prolific enough for Germany to capture atlease one example.


british mini puma loving it