The M8 Greyhound was used during World War II primarily as an escort and
reconnaissance vehicle. The 6 wheeled vehicle's light weight made it a
maneuverable vehicle. Development of the M8 began in 1941, and it was originally
planned for armor support, but was later shifted to reconnaissance. The Ford
company developed a prototype in June, 1942. The Greyhound had a Hercules JXD
rear mounted, water cooled engine, capable of generating 110 HP at 3000 r.p.m.
The transmission had a 4 speed forward, 1 speed reverse gearbox. The six wheel
configuration and engine made the Greyhound a stable vehicle with a maximum
speed of 88.5 km/h and range of 563 km. The steel plated armor on the body
ranged from 19mm to 32mm thick, the open topped turret had 19mm thick armor. The
12.7mm M2 machine gun was added to the cuppola. The Greyhound was also equipped
with an M70D gun sight/telescope. The interior could store up to 80 rounds for
the M6, 400 rounds for the 12.7mm machine gun and sometimes 1500 rounds for the
7.62mm machine gun. From March, 1943 to April 1945, over 8523 M8s were produced.
They were mainly used in Europe, but they also served in the Pacific. The M8 was
supplied to the Allies, including Britain and France. It is the British who
nicknamed the M8 "Greyhound". Many countries would continue to use the M8 well
after this conflict.
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