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M-39 Armored Utility Vehicle (AUV)

The M-39 Armored Utility Vehicle (AUV) was a variant of the M18 Gun Motor Carriage, a 76mm self-propelled tank destroyer (Hellcat). With the turret and gun removed, the light weight chassis and hull made an excellent choice for a multi-purpose utility vehicle used as an ammo carrier, personnel carrier, ambulance, prime mover and other duties. The open top cargo area had a ring mount for a .50 cal. machine gun.

The M39 Armored Utility Vehicle (AUV) was designed during World War II, known as T-41 during development. The M-39 AUV saw limited service in WW II as well as in the Korean War.

The most serious drawback to the M-39 was its open top without topside armor. The M39 was superseded by enclosed Armored Personnel Carriers beginning with the M75 APC.

Specifications of the M-39 Armored Utility Vehicle (AUV)

Crew3 + 8 passengers
Weight33,450 lbs.
Height6 ft, 8 in.
Width9 ft, 5 in.
Length17 ft, 4 in.
EngineContinental R975-C4, 9 cyl, radial gasoline
Horsepower400
Road Speed50 mph
Range100 mi.
ManualsORD 8 SNL G-163 Field & Depot Maintenance Parts List

Find additional photos and hi-res versions of the M-39 Armored Utility Vehicle at the Olive-Drab Military Mashup:

An M39 Armored Utility Vehicle arrives at Baker Company, 1st tank Battalion, 1st Marine Division, with ammunition for the tanks during second battle of outpost Vegas, 29 May 1953.
An M39 Armored Utility Vehicle moves up to 3rd Battalion, 1st Marines to pick up casualties during an attack against Boulder City, Berlin sector, in Korea, 25 July 1953.
Marines of Baker Co, 1st Tank Bn, 1st Marine Div, remove the shells from the casings and pile them up after taking them off an M39 Armored Utility Vehicle, OP Vegas, 29 May 1953
Marines of Baker Co, 1st Tank Bn, 1st Marine Div load white phosphorus shells on an M39 Armored Utility Vehicle (AUV) to be brought up to the tanks in the field, Korea, 25 May 1953.
M39 Armored Utility Vehicles, used as personnel carriers, stand by to take Marines into action during the battles for outposts Berlin and E. Berlin, Korea, 25 July 1953.
Troops loading wounded at OP onto an M-39 Armored Utility Vehicle (AUV), 17th Infantry Regiment, 7th Infantry Division, Korea, 1953.  Jeep in right foreground is MB or GPW, WW II vintage.

M-39 Armored Utility Vehicle (AUV) Photo Gallery

Members of the 389th Infantry Regiment, 2d Infantry Division, help a veteran of the battle of Old Baldy into the forward aid station for treatment after transport by an M-39 Armored Utility Vehicle, Korea, 19 September 1952
Members of the 389th Infantry Regiment, 2d Infantry Division, help a veteran of the battle of "Old Baldy" into the forward aid station for treatment after transport by an M-39 Armored Utility Vehicle, Korea, 19 September 1952.

Personnel of the Korean service corps unload logs from an M-39 Armored Utility Vehicle at the RHE 2nd US Inf Div supply point on Old Baldy near Chorwon, Korea. Logs are for use in the construction of bunkers. A second M-39 is in the background.  Korea, 1 Oct 1952
Personnel of the Korean service corps unload logs from an M-39 Armored Utility Vehicle at the RHE 2nd US Inf Div supply point on "Old Baldy" near Chorwon, Korea. Logs are for use in the construction of bunkers. A second M-39 is in the background. Korea, 1 Oct 1952.

Marines of Baker Company, 1st Tank Battalion, 1st Marine division load white phosphorus shells on an M-39 Armored Utility Vehicle to be brought up to their tanks in the field. Korea, 25 May 1953
Marines of Baker Company, 1st Tank Battalion, 1st Marine division load white phosphorus shells on an M-39 Armored Utility Vehicle to be brought up to their tanks in the field. Korea, 25 May 1953.

An M-39 Armored Utility Vehicle (AUV) arrives at Baker Company, 1st tank Battalion, 1st Marine Division, with ammunition for their tanks during second battle of Outpost Vegas, Korea, 29 May 1953
An M-39 Armored Utility Vehicle (AUV) arrives at Baker Company, 1st tank Battalion, 1st Marine Division, with ammunition for their tanks during second battle of Outpost Vegas, Korea, 29 May 1953.

Marines of Baker Company, 1st Tank Battalion, 1st Marine division, remove shells from their casings and pile them up after taking them off an M-39 Armored Utility Vehicle. The tankers were reloading their tanks for firing on Outpost Vegas, Korea, 29 May 1953
Marines of Baker Company, 1st Tank Battalion, 1st Marine division, remove shells from their casings and pile them up after taking them off an M-39 Armored Utility Vehicle. The tankers were reloading their tanks for firing on Outpost Vegas, Korea, 29 May 1953.

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