The Stingray light tank was developed by Cadillac Gage as a private venture. It was aimed at the export customers. The first prototype was completed in 1985. It entered service with the Royal Thai army in 1988. Thailand purchased a total of 106 Stingray light tanks.
The Stingray was developed to with increased strategic and tactical mobility in mind. This light tank is air transportable. It can be airlifted by C-130 Hercules or similar cargo aircraft.
RTA Stingray on the move to the Thai – Cambodian border during clashes at Phra Viharn Temple in 2010
Gun and turret of the Stingray are similar to those of the Cadillac Gage V600 Commando fire support vehicle, which was also developed as a private venture in the early 1980s.
The stingray is very lightly armed. Front armor can only withstand 14.5-mm ammunition, however additional armor protection can be fitted.
Stingray tank with RPG cage
The Stingray is armed with a fully-stabilized 105-mm Low Recoil Force rifled gun, derived from the British L7A3. This gun is identical in performance to the one used on the M1 Abrams main battle tank. It can fire a full range of NATO ammunition. This gun is loaded manually. Eight rounds of ready ammunition are carried in the turret. Remaining rounds are stored in the hull.
Secondary armament consists of coaxial 7.62-mm machine gun and 12.7-mm machine gun, mounted on top of the roof.
The Stingray light tank has a crew of four, including commander, gunner, loader and driver.
The layout of the Stingray is conventional, with the driver’s compartment at the front, fighting compartment in the centre and power pack at the rear.
The driver sits in the centre of the hull at the front and has a single-piece hatch cover that is hinged at the rear and can be locked open. The hatch cover has three integral day periscopes, which give good visibility over 120º of the vehicle’s front. The centre periscope can be replaced by a passive periscope for night driving. The driver has an adjustable seat and would normally enter his position via the turret. With the turret traversed fully left or right or with the 105 mm gun in its travel lock, the driver can easily enter via his hatch.
Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comImage @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comImage @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comImage @thaidefense-news.blogspot.com
The driver steers the Stingray with an oval steering wheel rather than the more usual sticks. Either side of the driver’s position are 14 rounds of 105 mm ammunition. When in a combat area, an optional spall blanket is hung to the sides and rear of the driver’s position for added protection. The Stingray has additional internal stowage space above the tracks with an access hatch in the glacis plate either side of the driver. Source @army-guide.com
Vehicle is fitted with a Detroit Diesel 8V-92TA diesel engine, developing 535 horsepower. Engine, transmission, suspension and tracks of the Stingray are standard components, used to reduce procurement and servicing costs.
Detroit Diesel 8V-92TA diesel engine
The initial powerplant was a standard-issue Detroit Diesel Allison 8V-92TA 535 hp (399 kW) engine, but the serial model (for the Thai Royal Army) was a liquid cooled turbo charged 2 stroke V-8 diesel engine which developed 550 hp (410 kW).
Suspension either side has six small road wheels with idler front, drive sprocket rear and three track-return rollers, no side skirts. Source @tanks-encyclopedia.com
The engine is coupled to an Allison Transmission XTG-411-2A automatic transmission, which has an automatic lock-up torque converter with a torque multiplication of 2.4, geared steer and clutch and brake steering. The 4:1 planetary final drive gearboxes have been designed and built by the company specifically for the Stingray.
Allison Transmission XTG-411
Pic shows XTG-411-5 model – Image @nimda.co.il
Cooling is by three-vane axial fans, each of which moves 9,000 cfm. The radiators and oil coolers are sized to provide adequate cooling to 120ºC. The air inlets are above the engine compartment, with the air outlet at the left rear of the hull and the exhaust outlet on the right side of the hull. Special attention has been given to making the infra-red signature of the vehicle as small as possible. An extra heavy-duty air cleaner scavenges heavier dirt into the engine exhaust.
Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comImage @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comImage @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comImage @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comImage @thaidefense-news.blogspot.com
Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comImage @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comExhaust outlet on the right side of the hull – Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.com
Electrical power is provided by a 650 A oil-cooled generator and stored in six batteries in the left side of the hull. Access to these batteries for daily checks is via a door in the side of the hull. The batteries are capable of furnishing start-up current in temperatures as low as -25ºF.
The rear engine compartment panels fold down for access to the engine while those on top fold rearwards. Daily checks can easily be carried out on the engine.
The 757 litre fuel tank is integral and located between the crew and engine compartments.
The now BAE Systems Land Systems 105 mm Low-Recoil Force (LRF) gun has a muzzle brake added, a redesigned fume extractor, a cradle design and a new recoil system. The new cradle design is a monocoque structure that combines high rigidity with light weight.
Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comImage @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comImage @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comFume extractor – Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.com
Muzzel break – Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.com
There are 32 rounds of 105 mm ammunition carried, all of which are stowed below the turret ring. Eight rounds are stowed in the turret, three of which are for immediate use, stowed vertically to the left of the breech and the remainder under the spent case ejection bag. The three ready rounds are kept in special individual racks, which are configured to accept all types of 105 mm ammunition.
Main gun – Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comMaon gun breech – Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.com
Once the loader releases the catch the first ready round swings forward as it is pivoted at the base. The spent case ejection bag holds five cases which can be disposed of through the ammunition resupply hatch in the left side of the turret.
Ammo storage for main gun – mage @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comAmmo storage for main gun – Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.com
Ammunition resupply hatch
Ammunition resupply hatch – Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.com
Following initial trials with the prototype Stingray, a muzzle reference system was fitted to the 105 mm LRF gun and a collapsing breech guard fitted to allow for improved crew movement in the turret.
A 7.62 mm M240 machine gun is mounted coaxially to the left of the main armament and is provided with 400 rounds of ready use ammunition. A further 2,000 rounds of 7.62 mm ammunition are stowed in the turret area in 200-round boxes. It takes the loader 7 seconds to replenish the ready use ammunition for the coaxial machine gun.
7.62 mm M240 machine gun is mounted coaxially
A 7.62 mm M240 (with 200 rounds of ready use ammunition) or a 12.7 mm M2 machine gun (with 100 rounds of ready use ammunition) is mounted externally at the commander’s station for anti-aircraft use. A total of 1,000 rounds of 12.7 mm machine gun ammunition is carried for the M2 anti-aircraft weapon.
7.62 mm M240 machine gun – Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.com7.62 mm M240 machine gun – Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.com
12.7 mm M2 machine gun
A bank of four electrically operated grenade dischargers is mounted either side of the turret, for which 16 grenades are carried.
Electrically operated grenade dischargers @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comElectrically operated grenade dischargers @thaidefense-news.blogspot.com
The turret is of all-welded Cadloy steel armour construction providing the same level of protection as the hull. The use of flat plates in the construction of the turret enables the user to up-armour the turret at a later date without extensive rework.
Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comImage @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comImage @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comImage @thaidefense-news.blogspot.com
The commander sits on the right of the turret with the gunner below and to his front and the loader on the left. The gunner has a roof-mounted Optic-Electronic Corporation M36E1 day/night sight. As an option this can be replaced by an M36E1 SIRE day/night sight incorporating a laser range-finder or a thermal sight. The commander has an NV-52 day/night sight, seven periscopes for all-round observation and a single-piece hatch cover that opens to the rear.
Optic-Electronic Corporation M36E1 day/night sight
Gunners sight – Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comGunners control panel – Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.com
NV-52 & M36E1 day/night sight
Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comCommanders sight – Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comCommanders station – Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comCommanders control stick – Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comCommunication radio – Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.com
The loader has a single-piece hatch cover that opens to the rear and a single forward-facing periscope for observation.
Turret traverse and weapon elevation are via an HR Textron Incorporated electrohydraulic system with a manual back-up. Controls are provided for both the commander and gunner and turret traverse is a full 360º at 40º/s, with weapon elevation from -7.5 to +20º at a similar speed. An automatic deck clearance system is fitted as standard and as an option, a two-axis electrohydraulic stabilisation system can be fitted, enabling the 105 mm gun to be laid and fired while Stingray is moving across country.
Electrohydraulic stabilisation system
Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comImage @thaidefense-news.blogspot.com
Prototypes and production Stingray light tanks have been fitted with the then Marconi Electronic Systems, Land and Naval Systems Group, Digital Fire-Control System (DFCS). Marconi Electronic Systems is now part of BAE Systems Land Systems and is no longer involved in tank fire-control systems.
The Stingray could be fitted with the standard M13A1 ventilated face mask system for NBC protection and the vehicle can be painted in chemical-resistant paint.
As an option Stingray can be fitted with a land navigation system and an engine smoke generator that injects diesel oil into the exhaust to create a smoke-screen behind the tank. The prototype is fitted with an HTL engine fire warning and suppression system as well as a fire detection/suppression system for the crew compartment. Radios and crew intercom depend on the user’s requirements. Source @army-guide.com
Further development of the Stingray became the Stingray II. It has a number of improvements, including increased armor protection, mobility and improved fire control system. However the Stingray II has not entered service with any country yet.
Image @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comImage @thaidefense-news.blogspot.comImage @thaidefense-news.blogspot.com
The Stingray II is an upgrade version of the Stingray, developed by Cadillac Gage as a private-venture armored fighting vehicle (AFV) for the export market. The light tank’s baseline armor, while thin, is adequate for a cavalry, reconnaissance or light infantry fire support role; it protects its occupants from armor-piercing, heavy machine gun rounds up to 14.5 mm in size. Additional armor appliqué can be fitted to increase ballistic protection. Operational range is increased by about 25 miles (about 40 kilometers) if one assumes a travel speed of about 30 mph (48 km/h). In addition, the engine on the Stingray II has been upgraded to 410 kW (550 horsepower) at 2,300 rpm.
The Stingray’s main armament is a low recoil force (LRF) version of the British Royal Ordnance L7 105 mm rifled gun installed in a well-angled and electro-hydraulically powered turret having manual backup as is usually found on tanks, together with duplicate turret controls for the gunner and the commander, providing redundancy. Dimensions of the turret were deliberately designed to allow it to be refitted to M41 Walker Bulldog and M-551 Sheridan vehicles as an upgrade.
M41 Walker Bulldog with Stingray turret
M-551 Sheridan with Stingray turret
The gun has optional stabilization in two axes, and eight rounds, with another 24 rounds stored in the hull. Complementing the main gun is a 7.62 mm co-axial machine gun with 2,400 rounds, as well as a 12.7 mm M2 Browning anti-aircraft machine gun with 1,100 rounds on the commander’s hatch. The Stingray II is fitted with 16 protective smoke grenade launch tubes, with 8 of them on each side. The optic system for the gunner is composed of a two-axis stabilized day/night thermal imaging system called ‘Hughes Hire,’ made by the company then known as Hughes Electronics, together with a laser rangefinder. For the commander, there is another optical system that has seven different periscopes, and there is also a repeater display for the same thermal image seen by the gunner.
The main improvements offered in the Stingray II are a more capable digital fire-control system, NBC equipment, enhanced mobility and superior target-engagement capabilities. The Stingray II also improves the armor to provide protection from 23 mm rounds.
Stingray modified for the AGS competition but lost to the FMC/UDLP/BAE Close Combat Vehicle Light which became the type-classified M8 Armored Gun System.
The AGS-Sheridan was a mating of the standard M551 Sheridan hull with the turret of the Stingray light tank. It was entered for the Armored Gun System competition but lost to the FMC/UDLP/BAE Close Combat Vehicle Light which became the type-classified M8 Armored Gun System.
Image @tanks-encyclopedia.comImage @tanks-encyclopedia.com
|Date of first acceptance||1988||Total acceptances||108|
|Manufacturer||Cadillac Gage Co.||Crew||4 men:
|Length without gun||248″
|Gun overhang forward||117″
|Ground pressure, zero penetration||10.2psi
|105mm Gun LRF||Turret||32 rounds
|12.7mm M2HB MG||Commander’s cupola||1100 rounds||360°
|7.62mm M240C MG||Coaxial to 105mm gun||2400 rounds||360°|
|M36E1 day/night sight for gunner|
|Engine||Detroit Diesel 8V-92TA; 8 cylinder, 2 cycle, vee, turbocharged diesel|
|Type||Road wheels||Track return rollers|
|Torsion bar||6 dual/track||3 dual/track|
|Drive sprockets||Idlers||Shock absorbers|
|Rear drive||Dual at front of track||3/track|
|Center guide, double pin, steel with detachable rubber pad|
|Max level road speed||42mph
|Max grade||60%||Max vertical obstacle||30″
|Max fording depth||42″
Specification data @afvdb.50megs.com