In 1966, Germany purchased a total of 97 FV601D Alvis Saladin armoured-cars from Britain. The vehicles were introduced to the BGS, the German border-patrol, which used them from 1966 to 1973 under the new name “Sonderwagen III” meaning Special Vehicle III, the name was also sometimes shortened to “SW III”. The vehicles were not used by the Bundeswehr, but were completely operational, including the cannon.
As to why the BGS received such heavy vehicles, this was most likely done, because in the case of an escalation between east and west, the BGS would have supported the Bundeswehr in the ensuing conflict with east-Germany, therefore such a heavily armoured and armed vehicle made sense to be fielded with what essentially was a military-police, especially during the time, because during the 1960’s and 1970’s, the BGS was still more military, than police, with new recruits being trained on handgrenades, machineguns and rifles up until at least 1972, if not even later.
For the overall look that differenciates them from the British original, they did not have a roof-mounted LMG, they also had BGS markings, like the number-plate, but otherwise were left stock like the standard British Saladin. Even the paint-job was not changed, with all of the German SW III’s retaining the original British olive paint-job.
The specific version which Germany purchased was the FV601D, which was different to other Saladin variants, with the lack of a coaxial LMG, different smoke-dischargers and also different lights.
Weight: 11,6 tons
1x 76mm L5A1 cannon (42 rounds) (the version Germany purchased, the FV601D, did not have a coaxial LMG, and the German used Saladins also did not receive a roof-mounted LMG)
I personally think this would be an excellent wheeled vehicle for Germany, which could fit great after the Sd.Kfz 234/2 at a BR of 4.7 or 5.0.
If you want to add something, or spot a mistake, feel free to post it under this thread. Cheers!