Vickers Mk 3(I) - The Fastest Vickers Medium.

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The fastest of the Vickers mediums


Last month I covered the Vickers Mk.1(I) or Mk.1 improved, which was met rather favourably so today’s subject is another of the improved series, the Mk.3(I), the fastest and arguably best of the Vickers medium tanks they produced and a prime candidate for a place in War thunder.

The Vickers Mk.3 currently in the game at rank VI was an earlier attempt at improving the Mk.1 MBT to make the series more desirable to their potential customers, whilst retaining the same desirable traits, notably a vehicle that was cheap to purchase and operate compared to contemporary western MBT’s yet offered good fire power and mobility with just enough armour enough to withstand some threats.

While the Mk.1 was almost entirely designed initially for an Indian contract, it did see some sales outside of India, namely Kuwait and many other nations were offered the vehicle but Vickers frequently fell flat on their faces when it came to selling tanks.

The Mk.3 was therefore aimed at modernizing the MK.1 to a new set of customers, including Egypt, Thailand, Venezuela, and several African Nations, with only the latter showing interest after Vickers once again diplomatically face planted themselves into the ground.

The Mk.3, offered a new turret taken from the cancelled Mk.2 project, and merged with the older modified Mk.1 hull. The armour itself was little better, but it did have some improvements in the fire controls systems and engines.

Despite total sales being less than was hoped for, Vickers would pick themselves out of the dust they put themselves into and once again set to making a tank that nobody really asked for, but certain in their confidence of the old adage of ‘3rd time lucky’ this time designing the Mk.3(I) or Mk 3 improved.

The Mk.3(I)


Developed between 1986 and undergoing trials in 1987 the Mk3(I) was first publicly announced in 1990 with Vickers claiming that it has specifically been redesigned to maximize mobility. The vehicle was now powered by the VR 800 power pack which consisted of the Rolls Royce CV12 800E coupled to a TN 12 gearbox delivering 800-900 bhp and a top speed recorded as 62 kph. There was also an optional choices of a VR 750 pack which consisted of a CV12 TCE engine at 750 bhp, finally the V 800 pack was the carry over from the Mk.3 with the 720 bhp GM 12V71T engine offering just 50kph.

The hull differs slightly, the front is now cast instead of welded and the driver now has 3 periscopes instead of one as seen on the Mk.3 and it included a day night driving systems. The armour gives it a smoother curvier front similar to some American tanks but otherwise offers no extra protection. Unlike the Mk.3 she has quite distinct side skirts.

The suspension is slightly different, with lengthened torsion bars over the Mk.3, wider tracks at 559 mm over the 521 mm original tracks and the final drive, road wheels and idlers were all uprated with improved shocks added.

The turret itself had the same armour with a cast front and welded back, the 105 mm gun was the familiar L7 but now featured a muzzle reference system for improved accuracy but retained the older SFCS 600 Marconi FCS and EC620 GCE.
Gun depression remained at -10 degrees and + 20 elevation, however, unlike the older Mk.3 the 3(I) she was now able to fire all modern NATO 105 mm rounds including APFSDS, while secondary fire was in the form of a 7.62 coax, and a 12.7 mm pintle mounted HMG along with a pair of standard 6 pot smoke launchers.

The MK.3(I) was displayed at Aldershot and got some public attention but like many Vickers projects no sales were achieved and the original vehicle is believed to have been scrapped. The colours painted on it and the location of the photos indicate that it was displayed alongside the same team that demonstrated the Vickers MK 7 against leopard Abrams and Challenger but was not involved in that trial itself.

So, what will it do in game?


The Mk.3(I) would folder in below the Mk 3 or as a premium or reward vehicle, feel free to discuss what and where or what BR etc. what it does offer is an improved speed over the Mk.3 at 62 kph and improved handing in all areas due to more grunt in the trunk, and improved running gear. There are no thermals, but it does have passive day/night. The 105 mm now has APFSDS which is a big step up from APDS, and it is fully stabilized on the move.

Basically, you’re getting a better Mk.3 in a nutshell, - good gun depression, should be quite nimble and agile, a good round, a 12.7 is handy for UK stuff, an acceptable profile, on the downside your armour will melt to anything above air rifle in calibre so caution should be had when around autocannons and the like. Feel free to discuss where this should go below.

Technical gubbins


Crew: four persons, commander gunner loader driver
Weight: battle 38.7 tons unladen 36.1 tons
Ground pressure: battle 0.79 kilograms/cm2
Power to weight ratio:
20.7 bhp/tonne (VR 800 pack)
18.9 bhp/tonne (V 800 pack)


Overall length (vehicle only) 7.56 meters
Overall length (gun forward) 9.78 meters
Overall length (gun rear) 8.53 meters
Overall width 3.16 meters
Ground clearance 0.432 meters


Power pack – VR 800
Engine make – Rolls Royce
Designation – CV12 800E
12 cylinders 60 degree v4mation 4 stroke diesel
Piston displacement – 26.1 litres
Horsepower – 800 BHP at 2,300 engine rpm
Compression ratio – 14: 1
Air cleaner – two stage cyclone/filter
Engine lubrication – dry sump system
Fuel 1000 litres
Coolant 132 litres
Oil 91 litres


Gearbox – TN12 automatic
Clutch – Centrifugal
Steering – Merritt regenerative
Steering breaks – disk – hydraulically applied mechanical interlock
Main breaks – disk – for foot break; band – for parking brake
Final Drive dash single spur reduction
Final Drive ratio – 3.93:1


Maximum road speed – 62 kilometres an hour (VR800 power pack)
Maximum road speed – 50 kilometres an hour (V800 power pack)
Vertical obstacle – 0.91 meters
Maximum gradient – 30 degrees (60%)
Trench Crossing – 3.0 meters
Estimated range on road 600 kilometres at 32 kilometres an hour (v800)
Water Crossing – shallow forwarding without preparation 1.1 meters


Torsion bars – each of the 12-wheeled stations (6%) has a primary torsion bar
Wheeled stations one, 2 and 6 on each side having additional secondary torsion bars and shock absorbers.
Road wheels – 12 pairs twin steel wheels (six pairs per side) 762 mm X 111 mm wide
Rubber tired.

Wheel deflection:

Static to bump – 218 mm
Static-to rebound – 117 mm
Total movement – 335 mm
Track – dry pin, rubber padded, 559 mm
Number of links per track – 96
Track pitch – 152 mm
Track centres – 253 mm
On ground – 4.28 meters
Sprockets – 13 teeth 651 mm PCD
Top rollers rubber tired – six pairs three per side
Track adjuster dash double rimmed cast steel wheel
686 mm diameter x 100 and 168 mm wide, adjusted by screw thread

Main Armament

Designation – 105 mm gun TK l7a1 semi-automatic
Gun mounting type self aligning needle roller mounted trunnions
Elevation + 20 degrees
Depression -10 degrees except it rear of Hull

Secondary armament

Coaxial mounted with main Armament 7.62 mm GPMG l8
12.7 mm browning MG cupola mounted
7.62 mm GPMG l37
Smoke dischargers – two sets (6 barrels per side)

Sighting and Vision equipment

Commander – one periscope. combined day/night image intensifier magnification: day X1 X10 night X4. six pairs of scopes magnification X1.
Gunner - 1 x tank laser site with ballistic graticule magnification X1 and X10.
Loader – 1 periscope (reflecting mirror folding type) magnification x 360 degree rotating.
Driver – Day: three periscopes bracket wide angle magnification X1 . Night: one periscope wide angle image intensifier magnification X1.

Fire control equipment

Marconi SFCS600

Gun control equipment

EC620 transistorized manual and electric at the gunner’s position and electric at the commander’s position. Turret stabilized an azimuth and gun mounting in elevation to provide stabilized power lay for the gunner and Commander.
Commanders override on power controls only. emergency power traversed provided direct from vehicle batteries

Ammunition stowage

105 millimetre – 50 rounds
All standard NATO types of 105 mm tank ammunition.
12.7 millimetre – 1000 rounds
7.62 millimetre – 5,000 rounds


Vickers press release correspondence from Vickers
Vickers publicity brochure
Vickers Mk3i workbook
Vickers mK3i specifications brochure
Communication with Ex Vickers Elswick staff.
Vickers ATDU trials reports.


+1 at 8.7!

Luv me Vickers. Simple as. +1


Luv me L7
Luv me mobility
Ate the T-55 (not racist just don’t like 'em)
Simple as