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Renault FT-17

General Characteristics
Length:5 m (with a tail)
Width: 1.47 m
Height: 2.14 m
Weight:6.5 t
Speed: 7 km/h
Range: 65 km (road)
Armament: 37 mm gun or 8 mm machinegun
Maximum armour: 16 or 22 mm
Power plant:gasoline, 39 HP
Crew:2 (Commander, driver)

The Renault FT-17 (Renault FT modele 1917) was the French light tank. It was probably the most revolutionary and influential tank design in the history. FT-17 was the first tank with an armament in a fully rotating turret, and its composition became the classic one, repeated in most tanks until today.

The prototype was constructed in 1917, and more than 3800 were produced. The tanks had either earlier octagonal turret or later rounded turret (called Berliet turret). In the USA this tank was built on a licence as Six Ton Tank Model 1917 (950 built).


Combat History

The tank was widely used in the battles of the
World War I since 31 May 1918. It was the most succesfull tank design of the war, cheap and well-suited for a mass production.

After the war, they were exported to many countries. As a result, FT-17 tanks were used by most countries, which had armoured forces, usually as their first tank type, including USA. They took part in many later conflicts, like in Russian Civil War, Polish-Soviet War, civil war in China and Spanish Civil War. FT-17 tanks were also used in the Second World War, among others in Poland and France, although they were completely obsolete by then.

US army operating Renault FT-17 tanks
From the site Photos of the Great War

See also: List of tanks\n