M578 ARV

With the delivery of the M113 armoured personnel carrier and the M109 self-propelled howitzer in the mid-1960s, the need arose for a “light” tracked recovery vehicle, which could be used to recover these types of vehicles under field conditions.

The choice fell on an already well-tried American vehicle M578, which shared undercarriage with the self-propelled artillery pieces M107 and M110, which however have not been in service in the Danish Army.

In the period 1966-1970, Denmark received a total of 24 M578 armoured recovery vehicles. These were placed in the staff battalions of the divisional armoured battalions and in the artillery divisions, this as a primary recovery vehicle for vehicles not exceeding 25 tonnes.

The recovery capacity was set at a maximum of 27 tons. The lifting capacity of the crane was max 11 tons, this was just enough to “handle” an M113, as well as other tasks at the attached vehicles.

The M578 was in use until early 2005 when it was phased out as the wear and tear was now so pronounced and the cost of a total refurbishment too high to make this viable.

The vehicle is preserved in 3 examples in Denmark and the exhibited example is almost fully functional.

M578 ARV
Country of origin: USA
Type: Light recovery vehicle
Speed: 59 km/h
Range: 700 km
Weight: 24.5 tons fully loaded
Width: 3.15 m
Height: 3.4 m with machine gun
Length: 6.4 m with crane in driving position
Crew: 3
Armament: .50 Cal (12.7 mm) machine gun
Engine: Detroit Diesel 8V 71T 9.3 liters 8-cylinder 405 HP
Transmission: Allison XTG-411-2A, 4 forward and 2 reverse
Year of introduction: 1966-70
Phased out year: 2005