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The M3A1 Scout Car was an armored car in U.S. service during World War II. It was also known as the White Scout Car, after its manufacturer, the White Motor Company. It was used in various roles, including patrol, scouting, command vehicle, ambulance and gun tractor.  This M3A1 was built in 1941

The original M3 was a classically-built, light armored truck.  The improved M3A1 was the main production variant.  The hull was lengthened, and to prevent bogging down, an un-ditching roller was mounted in front of the bumper on most variants.  In the standard M3A1 armament consisted of three machine guns were mounted on skate rails, one forward central 0.50 caliber and two 0.30 caliber guns at the rear. A radio was fitted with an antenna base at the center of the rear section. Nearly, 21,000 units were produced.

The M3 and M3A1 first saw combat during the Japanese invasion of the Philippines in 1941.  It was used by the cavalry units of the US Army in the North African Campaign and the invasion of Sicily. It served traditional cavalry roles, such as scouting and screening.  It also served as an armored command vehicle.  By mid-1943, the drawbacks of the design – its open top, poor off-road mobility, and poor armament – were evident. During 1943, most US Army units replaced the M3A1 with enclosed armored vehicles. A small number of M3A1s were retained and employed in the Normandy invasion.

Specifications

  • Type: Armored car
  • Manufacturer: White Motor Company
  • Weight: 8,900 lb
  • Length: 222 in
  • Width: 80 in
  • Height: 79 in
  • Crew: Driver + 7
  • Armor: 0.25 inch sides, 0.5 inch windshield removable armor and shatterproof glass windshield and 0.5 inch louvered armor for radiator
  • Main Armament: .50 cal M2 Browning machine gun
  • Secondary Armament: .30 cal Browning M1919A4 machine gun
  • Engine: Gasoline fueled Hercules JXD, 110 horsepower
  • Operational range: 240 miles
  • Speed: 55 mph

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