|Please click on a photo for a better image.|
|Panhard AML H90|
|Panhard AML H90 with new sight
Copyright © B. Halligan
|Panhard AML H90 (Original)
Copyright © An Cosantoir
|Following the civil unrest of August 1969, the DF commenced on a programme of equipment renewal and replacement. The Panhard AML 60 had entered service in 1964, with 16 purchased, 8 for the UN force in Cyprus and 8 for home use and training. However, it was felt that a more powerfully armed vehicle was required and as Panhard had basically the same vehicle available with a 90mm cannon an initial order for 4 was placed. These were supplemented in various batches and currently19 are in service (20 were actually purchased but one was destroyed in an accidental fire in Lebanon).
The Panhard AML series is one of the most successful armoured vehicles ever, with 4,800 built between 1959 and 1999. First production vehicles were completed in 1961 for the French army.
One of the biggest drawbacks of the vehicle was the engine, a Panhard Model 4 HD air-cooled petrol unit, which was underpowered and expensive to maintain. From the early 90's a replacement programme was initiated by the DF to replace these with a Peugeot XD 3T diesel unit and all PDF cars have been upgraded (the status of the 3 RDF cars is unclear).
A further upgrade was made to the cars with the addition of the same Fire Control System as fitted to the AML 20s.