BTR-60

The BTR-60 is the first vehicle in a series of Soviet eight-wheeled armoured personnel carriers (APCs). It was developed in the late 1950s as a replacement for the BTR-152 and was seen in public for the first time in 1961. BTR stands for Bronetransporter.


BTR-60
Class Vehicle
Type Armoured Fighting Vehicle
Manufacturer Gorki Automobile Factory No.1 (GAZ)
Production Period 1960 - 1976
Origin Russia (USSR)
Country Name Origin Year
Russia (USSR) 1959
Country Name Operational Year Retirement Year
Afghanistan 1979 View
Algeria 1978 View
Angola 1975 View
Armenia 1994 View
Bhutan View
Bulgaria 1964 View
Cambodia (Kampuchea) 1990 View
China 1969 View
Congo (Zaire) 1984 View
Croatia 1998 View
Cuba 1962 View
Djibouti 1980 View
Egypt 1970 View
Eritrea View
Estonia View
Ethiopia 1977 View
Georgia 1992 View
Ghana View
Grenada 1982 View
Guinea 1983 View
Guinea Bissau 1979 View
Hungary 1963 View
India 1977 View
Iran (Persia) 1967 View
Israel View
Kazakhstan 2000 View
Kenya View
Kyrgyzstan 1995 View
Laos 1981 View
Liberia 1987 View
Libya 1975 View
Lithuania 1992 View
Macedonia View
Mali 1982 View
Mexico View
Moldova 1992 View
Mongolia 1975 View
Morocco View
Namibia 2001 View
Nicaragua 1981 View
Nigeria View
North Korea 1974 View
Peru View
Poland 1980 View
Romania 1959 View
Russia (USSR) 1959 View
Rwanda View
Somalia 1976 View
Sudan View
Syria 1970 View
Tajikistan 2000 View
Turkey (Ottoman Empire) 1990 View
Turkmenistan 1995 View
Uganda 1999 View
Ukraine 1995 View
Uzbekistan 2000 View
Vietnam 1978 View
Yemen View
Zambia (Northern Rhodesia) 1980 View
Azerbaijan 1992 View
Belarus 1995 View
Botswana 1981 View
Democratic Republic of the Congo 2000 View
Mozambique 1977 View
ManufacturerName Production From Production To Quantity
Ratmil Regie Autonoma 1960 1976 1872 View
Gorki Automobile Factory No.1 (GAZ) 1960 1976 25000 View

The BTR-152 and BTR-40, the first two Soviet mass-produced APCs developed after the Second World War gave the Soviet Army useful experience with wheeled armoured personnel carriers. However, even as they were designed, they weren't suited for the needs of the Soviet Army as they lacked a roof (which was added in later versions designated BTR-152K and BTR-40B respectively). The low combat values of the BTR-152 and BTR-40 were exposed during the Suez Crisis, when the Egyptian Army used them. This was one of the reasons why the new APC was developed.

Between 1956 and 1957, a decision was made to convert all rifle and mechanized divisions into new motor rifle divisions and a requirement for a new vehicle was drawn up.

Development proceeded along two paths: a more expensive vehicle that would eventually become the BMP-1, for use in tank divisions, and a cheaper vehicle for use in motor rifle divisions, that would eventually become the BTR-60. Two design bureaus were given the requirements, GAZ led by V. A. Dedkov, and ZiL led by Rodionov and Orlov. The requirements stated that the vehicle should have all wheel drive, at least two turnable axles, independent suspension as well as mobility and fording capabilities allowing it to operate alongside tanks. The vehicle was also supposed to be amphibious. GAZ design team started to work on the new APC during the winter of 1956. Despite the fact that the army wanted a fully roofed vehicle with NBC protection system, the GAZ design did not have those features. It was argued that firing from the cramped interior would be difficult and that the limitation of losses wasn't a priority. The prototype was built between 1957 and 1958. ZiL developed a 6x6 design, the ZiL-153, similar in hull shape to the GAZ design. There were also three other 8x8 prototypes: Ob'yekt 560 (also known as MMZ-560), Ob'yekt 1015 (developed by KAZ), Ob'yekt 1015B (developed by KAZ, it had with a turret-mounted armament and stream propellers, also known as BTR-1015B) and Ob'yekt 1020B (developed by KAZ). All prototypes were submitted to and passed state trials in 1959. Even though the Ob'yekt 1015B performed best, the GAZ design was selected and given the designation BTR-60P. Officially, the committee that made the decision did so because of the GAZ plant's production capabilities and experience. The main reason was that the GAZ design was the simplest and cheapest one and introduced the lowest amount of technological advancements, which made it easier to put into mass production.

BTR-60P had open-roofed crew and troop compartments, which was deemed to be a serious disadvantage. Accordingly, a new version with an armoured roof, designated BTR-60PA, entered production in 1963. This new version's capacity was reduced from 16 soldiers to 14 soldiers.

The appearance of the German HS.30 APC, which was armed with a 20 mm cannon, prompted the addition of the conical BPU-1 turret. This turret, which was originally developed for the BRDM-2 amphibious armoured scout car, was armed with the KPVT 14.5 mm heavy machine gun and a PKT 7.62 mm tank machine gun. The new vehicle was designated the BTR-60PAI and entered production in 1965. It was, however, quickly replaced by the BTR-60PB, which had a better sighting system for the machine guns.

List of Conflicts

  • 1966 - 1991 - South African Border War (Angola, Cuba)
  • 1967 – Six Day War (Egypt, Syria)
  • 1968 - Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia
  • 1969 – Sino-Soviet border conflict (Soviet Union)
  • 1971 – Indo-Pakistani War of 1971 (India)
  • 1973 – Yom Kippur War (Egypt, Syria)
  • 1975 – 1990 – Lebanese Civil War
  • 1975 – 1991 – Western Sahara War
  • 1975 – 2002 – Angolan Civil War
  • 1978–1987 – Chadian-Libyan Conflict
  • 1979 – 1988 – Soviet War in Afghanistan
  • 1980 – 1988 – Iran–Iraq War (Iran, Iraq)
  • 1983 – Invasion of Grenada (Grenada)
  • 1988 – 1993 – Georgian Civil War
  • 1992 – 1993 – War in Abkhazia
  • 1988 – 1994 – Nagorno-Karabakh War (Nagorno-Karabakh, Armenia, Azerbaijan)
  • 1989 – Romanian Revolution
  • 1990 – 1991 – First Persian Gulf War (Iraq)
  • 1992 – 1997 – Civil War in Tajikistan
  • 1993– present – Kurdish–Turkish conflict (Turkey)
  • 1994 – Civil War in Yemen
  • 1994 – 1996 – First Chechen War
  • 1999 – 2009 – Second Chechen War
  • 2001 – ? – United States War in Afghanistan
  • 2003 – ? – Second Persian Gulf War
  • 2003 – Invasion of Iraq (Iraq)
  • 2011 - Libyan Civil War (Gaddafi and Anti-Gaddafi forces)
  • 2011–present - Syrian civil war (Government forces and rebels)
  • 2014–present - War in Donbass (Ukraine and Pro-Russian rebel forces)

Type Wheeled Amphibious Armored Personnel Carrier
Place of origin Soviet Union
Service history
In service 13 December 1959 – present
Used by See Operators
Wars See List of Conflicts
Production history
Designer V. A. Dedkov
Designed 1955
Manufacturer Gorkovsky Avtomobilny Zavod(USSR)
Ratmil Regie Autonoma(Romania, TAB-71)
Produced 1960 – 1976 (USSR)
Number built ~25,000 (USSR)
+1,872 (Romania, TAB-71)
Variants See Variants
Specifications (BTR-60PB)
Weight 10.3 tonnes (11.4 tons)
Length 7.56 m
Width 2.83 m (9.28 ft)
Height 2.31 m (7.58 ft)
Crew 3 + 14 passengers (original roofless BTR-60P had 2+14 capacity, reduced to 2+12 in BTR-60PA and 2+8 in BTR-60PB)
Armor Welded steel
7 mm at 86° hull upper front
9 mm at 47° hull lower front
7 mm hull sides
5 mm hull upper rear
7 mm hull lower rear
5 mm hull floor
7 mm hull roof
10 mm turret front
7 mm turret sides
7 mm turret sear
7 mm turret roof
Main
armament
14.5mm KPVT heavy machine gun (500 rounds)
Secondary
armament
7.62 mm PKT tank coaxial machine gun (3,000 rounds)
Engine 2×GAZ-40P 6-cylinder gasoline
90 hp (67 kW) each
180 hp (134 kW) (combined)
Power/weight 18.4 hp/tonne (13.7 kW/tonne)
Suspension wheeled 8×8
Ground clearance 475 mm (18.7 in)
Fuel capacity 290 l (76.6 g)
Operational
range
500 km (310.7 mi)
Speed 80 km/h (49.7 mi/h) on road
10 km/h (6.2 mi/h) in water

End notes