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Mystery Japanese Amphibious Tanks: What Are They ?
The AFV ASSOCIATION was formed in 1964 to support the thoughts and research of all those interested in Armored Fighting Vehicles and related topics, such as AFV drawings. The emphasis has always been on sharing information and communicating with other members of similar interests; e.g. German armor, Japanese AFVs, or whatever.
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 21, 2006 2:37 am
Post subject: Mystery Japanese Amphibious Tanks: What Are They ?

When were they made? Were they one-man tanks? Were they ever to be fitted with armament?

My Tanks Of The World book has a very brief description of them, but the book has been known to be very wrong sometimes - so I wanted to hear if you guys had any information. Any ideas?


In the first vehicle, it looks like that round cupola might be able to be lowered and raised. Secondly, at the front of the vehicle, there appears to be a glass porthole window. So, perhaps this vehicle was a one-man unit, where the driver would raise the cupola and drive in a sitting position for better visibility when not engaged, but would lower the cupola and pilot the vehicle in a prone position when in action - like the Sabathe one-man concept from France.

Secondly, on the TANKS website they list this "amphibious armored car", with no information:

As you can immediately see, this vehicle utilises the same small track assembly that the other vehicles used, and must have been part of the same design development.

Being that these vehicles have no unique Japanese name, nor serial numbers, it is nearly impossible to try and dig up new information on them via the search engines, so I come to you guys for help.

Thank you in advance! Any information would be appreciated.

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 21, 2006 3:15 am
Post subject: Re: Mystery Japanese Amphibious Tanks: What Are They ?

Hi Benjamin! Hi Folks!

What? Both of those are new vehicles to me! Thanks for the links Benjamin. Hope someone out there has ran acrossed those guys and came help. Looks like a very interesting idea. I wonder how they did doing testing?

Sgt, Scouts Out! Shocked

"You can never have too much reconnaissance."
General G.S. Patton Jr.
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 26, 2006 8:52 pm
Post subject: Re: Mystery Japanese Amphibious Tanks: What Are They ?

Still no takers ?

I don't even know when it was built!! But, I'm guessing late 20's early 30's.

My reason being, look at the odd diminutive track assemblies. I think they must have been from some sort of common tractor or something, because look, the apparent same diminutive track assemblies were used on the Crossley-Martel one-man of 1927. The Japanese assemblies have many differences, but the overall bogie assemblies, shape, and size are close enough that I think they must have been related.


In particular, compare the Crossley-Martel with the "Amphibious Armored Car". Diminutive track assemblies front, with large steering wheels behind.I know that the Crossley-Martel was never accepted for production by Britain, but could it be that they sold the design to Japan? Perhaps augmenting it and turning it into an amphibious tank? There really seems to be some connection here. I would very much like to know more.

Reply back folks! Thanks in advance!

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 30, 2006 5:45 am
Post subject: Re: Mystery Japanese Amphibious Tanks: What Are They ?

Hello again folks, I've come up with one more picture, and a brief account of this. After a short reply on another forum, and digging up a website that had information, I have compiled all the information, and ended up with this.


The "Experimental Amphibious Armored Car Sumida AMP" was built in 1931, and tested in 1932, by 'Ishikawajima Motorcar Manufacturing Company', and was the first in a series of experimental vehicles. It was developed as an effort to mechanise the Japanese cavalry, using aphibious armored cars. The Sumida was the first of the amphibious prototypes, and was a curious vehicle combining both track and wheels, and it ran in the opposite direction in the water and on the ground. After this, other amphibious armored cars were experimented with, however none had suitable cross country performance, and eventually it was decided to create a fully tracked non amphibious vehicle, and this became the Type 92 Combat Car.

As to whether the experimental vehicles were really Tanks, or Armored Cars, the Type 92 Combat Car was infact a fully tracked infantry tank, so it is possible the Sumida could be considered a tank aswell.


So, now that you guys have some dates, the name of the thing, etc, can anyone shed any more light on this thing? Or dig up any more pictures?

I've posted this on a few other forums, and have gotten only one or so replies, but maybe now we can start piling up the information Smile !

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 30, 2006 7:54 pm
Post subject: Re: Mystery Japanese Amphibious Tanks: What Are They ?

Ok folks, mystery solved.. I was being a fool.

When the listings said that both the Crossley Martel and these odd Japanese vehicles used Citroen-Kegresse tracks, I was getting a different picture in my head.

Both the Crossley-Martel and the Sumida AMP were basically modified Citroen-Kegresse half-track cars!!


Sumida AMP:

Like I said, there was a connection between these vehicles and the Crossley-Martel - it's just I should have realised it immediately, it shouldn't have been a great mystery Smile Oh well.

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