T65 40mm Gun Motor Carriage

The T65 40mm Gun Motor Carriage was an attempt to mount a 40mm Bofors gun on a modified M5 Light Tank chassis. The design was a success, but the M5 was going out of production and so work moved onto a version based on the M24 Chaffee light tank that entered service as the M19 Gun Motor Carriage.

In May 1941 the US Army began work on the T16 4.5in Gun Motor Carriage. Cadillac did much of the design work and they produced a chassis that was based on their M5 Light Tank, but lengthened and given a third two-wheeled suspension bogie. This increased the amount of space within the vehicle and made it easier to mount big guns (attempts to produce self-propelled guns on the basic M3 or M5 chassis had failed because it was too small).

The modified M5A1 chassis became the basis for a family of self-propelled gun designs, sometimes called the Light Combat Team. The T65 was produced for Anti-Aircraft Command and carried a twin 40mm Bofors gun mount on a circular platform mounted at the back of the tank. The prototype underwent successful trials, and in February 1943 Anti-Aircraft Command asked for 1,000 T65 40mm Gun Motor Carriages. Army Ground Forces objected to this order as the M5 was expected to go out of production soon. At this stage both the T7 Light Tank and T21 Light Tank programmes were in trouble and would soon be cancelled, but in April 1943 work began on the T24 Light Tank. This would later enter service as the M24 Chaffee, and was also designed to be the basis of other armoured vehicles (the Common Chassis Concept).

On 23 May 1943 the army approved the development of a version of the T65 using the new T24 chassis. The pilot was given the designation T65E1 and was completed early in 1944, and the vehicle was ordered into production in August 1944 as the M19 Multiple Gun Motor Carriage.

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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (6 March 2014), T65 40mm Gun Motor Carriage , http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/weapons_T65_40mm_GMC.html

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