Home' Defence Technology Review : DTR SEP 2014 Contents EQUIPMENT PROFILE
DEFENCE TECHNOLOGY REVIEW | ISSUE 02 | SEP 2014
GVM 10.4 tonnes
Payload 2 tonnes
(LxWxH) 6.25 x 2.356 x 2.13m
Wheelbase 4 .1m
PERFORMANCE @ GVM
Ground Clearance 0.6m (under chasis)
Side Slope 40%
Vertical Obstacle 0.5m
Trench Crossing 0.9m
1.5m (fording kit)
Main Ring mount for 12.7mm HMG,
40mm AGL or 7.62mm MG
Secondary Swing arm mounts for 5.56mm
LMG or 7.62mm GPMG at
commander’s station and rear
thereby freeing up floor space.
Three shorter fold-down shelves are also
fitted across the rear of the vehicle, with
one on the outward opening tailgate. These
each allow for stowage of three 20 litre
As the vehicle is fitted with run-flat tyres
as standard, only one spare tyre /wheel is
carried, this being to the right and under-
neath the main gun ring. A front-mounted
self-recovery winch, bull bar and wire cut-
ters are also standard equipment.
For high-speed movement on open roads,
the choice of a transparent fabric or ballistic
glass windscreen is available. Either option
is foldable in halves to enable the driver to
have his side of the windscreen up to pro-
tect against the cold and oncoming wind
and the front gunner/commander to fold
his side down to allow for unobstructed
arcs of fire.
Primary armament consists
of a manually-operated ring
mount fitted with an A-frame
and pintle to support a M2
12.7mm heavy machine gun
(HMG), 40mm automatic
grenade launcher (AGL) such
as the Mk 19/ Heckler and
Koch Grenade Machine Gun or
MAG-58 7.62mm general pur-
pose machine gun (GPMG).
Ammunition stowage is located
in close proximity to the ring mount to
facilitate rapid reloading.
The secondary armament fits see a
swing arm mount for a Minimi 5.56mm
light machine gun (LMG) or MAG-58 at
the commander’s station and a swing arm
post-mounted in each rear corner of the
This armament suite provides an all-
round defence capability and excellent
coverage for fast attack missions, raids and
for returning fire during an ambush. Alter-
native weapons to those above can be fitted
to suit individual customer requirements.
The Sherpa SF Light at combat weight
is air transportable in C-130 (1 x vehicle)
and A400M (2 x vehicles) or as an under-
slung load by CH-47 Chinook.
– Ian Bostock
ABOVE: Rear view of the Sherpa SF Light.
Note the jerrycan stowage and swing arm
machine gun mount in each rear corner.
One of the lessons learned by the French fighting in Mali under Operation Serval in
2012/13 was the effective range of weapons fitted to their tactical vehicles compared to
those of opposition forces. In several battles with French ground forces, guerilla fighters
mounted in pick-up trucks and armed with Russian 14.5mm HMGs outgunned and
outranged French vehicles equipped with the NATO-standard M2 12.7mm HMG.
In response, RTD integrated a Nexter P20 pintle-mounted 20mm cannon onto a Sherpa SF
Light vehicle, replacing the M2 12.7mm HMG as the main armament.
Centred around the widely deployed Nexter 20 M 621 20mm cannon, the P20 weapon
system enables accurate engagement of targets out to 2,000m at a rate of fire of 750rd /
min. The 20 M 621 is renowned for its reliability and ease of maintenance, making it well
suited for use by special forces deployed away from forward operating bases.
The light weight of the P20 mount and very low recoil forces allow it to be installed on SOVs
like the Sherpa SF Light, without fear that vehicle centre-of-gravity will be adversely affected
or that recoil forces will cause structural fatigue issues over time.
The P20 version shown on the Sherpa SF Light has a yoke-mounted ammunition can,
enabling it to move with the weapon when traversed or elevated /depressed.
The Sherpa SF Light
fitted with the Nexter P20
20mm weapon system.
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