In an effort to expand the FARG motor pool, I have been trying to locate a Panhard AML 60. These small armoured cars were first manufactured in the early 60's when the needs of the French Military couldn't continue to be fullfilled by the surplus American WW2 kit and the handful of english FERRET cars they had used in Indo China.
Panhard had made a war time armoured car that was captured and used widely by the German army. These were very heavy cumbersome vehicles and the French developed a smaller lighter three man vehicle platform to carry both a large gun (AML 90) and a recce low pressure mortar version (AML 60)
France have now ended their use of these vehciles and they were sold in numbers to Spain, Portugal, Argentinia and many African states. The South African even made some under licence (Eland) but changed the power unit from the aircooled apposed cylinder engine (similar to the VW) to an American petrol unit.
Nearly all these states (apart from the African ones) have now moved on to newer vehicle platforms and the AML's have become obsolete.
The Southern Irish army although, still use the vehicle to this day, but have fitted Turbo Diesel engines and up-rated the armament. Morrocco still deploy the vehicle as well, but the Spanish army (amoungst others) began a scrappage programme over the last 20 years.
This has left either excellent working examples in the hands of active armies, or a good deal of scrapped or destroyed examples. For example the Irish and Morrocan army disposal includes cutting into peices and crushing (thoroughly!)- no vehciles have been released into the public domain from these sources (?).
Indeed both an American and Belgian Arms dealers currently rebuild the AML's for use by expanding armies - so all parts are readily snapped up for these works, and therefore extremely little reaches civilian hands.
There was only one known AML90 in private hands in the UK and one AML60. The AML 60 is in extremely poor condition, and the AML 90 has now moved to Ireland.
The best place to find an AML was in Spain, and indeed were advertised up to about 7 years ago, but the scrapping programme was very thorough - and road worthy survivors are extremely rare.
In my hunt to find amn AML 60 - I have found some surviving examples across the globe - these are shown in the pictures to the right.
If you have any information on possible vehicles available to buy or in preservation (in any collections world wide), please let me know and I can add to the growing database!
1. Bovington Tank Museum AML 60 as captured in the Falklands from the Argentinians in '82
2. French Tank Museum in Saumur currently have on display an AML 90.
3. Privately owned AML 90 - currently based in Ireland (now in UN white?)
4. Sad looking AML 60 in private UK hands - no engine and missing many parts - was cannibalised for the AML 90 (picture 3)above.
5. AML 60 still in use with Irish Army
6. AML just before destruction in Morrocan scrap yard
7. AML rescued from a Spanish Scrap yard, and was in private collection in Spain for a while - the owner only paid a very small amount for this example, but sold it in 2007. It is believed to have been stripped to form basis of the AML 90 in Ireland. (see 3 above)
8. An AML refurbished by a belgian company and ready for use - the price tag is as much as a supercar!!
9. A serving AML 60 in the Army of Senegal
10. AMLs awaiting destruction!!! somewhere in N africa!! What a shame..
Therefore excluding museums and foreign army use - there may only be a handful of these vehciles left in private hands across Europe and only one is known to exist (in a non drivable state) in the UK. This may make my search a little tricky!!!