A Soviet tankette T-27 from 1931 on the base of English Carden-Loyd Mk.VI. Four cylinders, 3.28 L, 40 HP, 40 km/h

The T-27 was a tankette produced in the 1930s by the Soviet Union. It was based on the design of the Carden Loyd tankette, bought under license from the United Kingdom in 1930.

The Soviets were not fully satisfied with the Carden Loyd design and made a number of changes before putting it into mass production under the designation of T-27. Compared with the British original, the hull was larger, the running gear was improved and the weapon mount was modified to take a Soviet 7.62 mm DT machine gun. A number of other changes were made by Chief Engineer N. Kozyrev and Lead Engineer K. Sirken to improve the tankette’s ability to cope with the Russian climate and terrain. It lacked any communication devices, as communication between vehicles was intended to be carried out using signal flags.

The tankette was accepted into service on February 13, 1931. It was manufactured in two factories simultaneously, the Bolshevik factory in Leningrad (Now Saint Petersburg) and what would later become the GAZ factory in Nizhni Novgorod.

The principal use of the T-27 during its service life was as a reconnaissance vehicle. Initially, 65 tankette battalions were formed by the Red Army, with each having about 50 tankettes. This figure was later reduced to 23 per battalion. The tankette was also intended to be air-mobile. In 1935, the Soviets experimented with transporting T-27s by air, by suspending them under the fuselages of Tupolev TB-3 bombers.

Four cylinders, 3.28 L, 40 HP, 40 km/h. Made in 1931

The Carden Loyd tankettes were a series of British tankettes of the period between the World Wars, the most successful of which was the Mark VI, the only version built in significant numbers. It became a classic tankette design worldwide, was licence-built by several countries and became the basis of several designs produced in various countries.

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