Military Vehicle Trivia


By: Ian Fortey

6 Min Quiz

Image: danilovi/ E+/ Getty Images

About This Quiz

For most of human history, a military vehicle was a horse or maybe a chariot depending on your timeframe and place of origin. The advent of the automobile set off a pretty amazing revolution in how wars were fought and just what a military could do on the field of battle. What started with simple trucks and Jeeps for transporting soldiers and equipment from one place to another evolved to some of the most destructive, powerful and sophisticated machines ever produced and we're still going strong with some incredible designs and machines today. We have tanks that can fire rounds miles away. There are machines that can lay bridges across rivers or fire missiles to intercept aircraft. There are heavily armored vehicles that can handle land mine explosions and others decked out with more firepower than some small countries. It's pretty incredible.

Whether you're new to military vehicles or an old expert who's properly educated in what was used 100 years ago as well as you are about what's in use today, there's plenty of trivia to be versed in. If you think you know your stuff, then you just need to hop into the quiz and show us what you've got.

How many Willys MB Jeeps were produced during the Second World War?

When you think of an old-school military Jeep you're probably picturing the Willys MB. 650,000 of these were produced during WWII accounting for a solid 25% of all non-combat vehicles produced at the time.


In the late '90s, the 44th Medical Brigade outfitted one of these John Deere vehicles for casualty evacuation. What is it?

The M-Gator used in Bosnia wasn't even a military vehicle, it was one the battalion bought off the shelf (so to speak) and repainted in camouflage before outfitting it with rifle brackets. It was useful for moving supplies and casualties.


Which of these was designed to hit speeds of 80 mph in the desert?

Desert Patrol Vehicles saw heavy use during the Gulf War thanks to their versatility, handling, and speed. They could accelerate from 0 to 30 in 4 seconds and had a potential range of up to 1,000 miles if outfitted with an extra fuel tank.


Do you know the name of the 20lb robot designed to be thrown over fences and used for recon?

Looking like a tiny version of the Mars probe, the Dragon Runner robot is a recon vehicle designed to go to areas inaccessible to soldiers. It can transmit video and audio to a controller so that an area can be scouted.


What's the massive M970 used for?

The M970 Semi-Trailer refueler is used for under and overwing refueling of aircraft. The tank it hauls can carry 5,000 gallons of fuel. It's been around since at least 1980 and may be retired soon if a suitable replacement can be found.


Do you know what an Avenger is?

Also called the AN/TWQ-1, the Avenger is a mobile air defense system used by both the Army and the Marines. In layman's terms, it's a Jeep outfitted with a pair of rocket launchers that can fire Stinger or Starstreak missiles.


How many different countries have used the M113 armored personnel carrier?

The Military Channel once called the M113 the most significant infantry vehicle in military history. It's been used by over 50 countries, and more than 80,000 of them have been produced since the 1960s.


The US uses nearly 5,000 Stryker armored vehicles but doesn't make them. What country produces them?

The 8-wheeled IAV Stryker used by the US Army is meant to be somewhat less heavily armed than heavy vehicles. Named in honor of two fallen soldiers it's manufactured by General Dynamics Land Systems in Canada.


The South African Marauder has a double-skin monocoque hull. What does that do?

The massive Marauder looks like a Hummer that got Hulked out. Its unique hull absorbs massive amounts of kinetic energy to protect the crew inside. It could handle the equivalent of about 20lbs of TNT exploding under the hull and 30lbs under the wheels.


The Humvee is one of the most recognizable vehicles in the military. In what year did they enter service?

Humvees have been around since 1985 and have been used extensively for pretty much everything Jeeps used to do prior to the 1980s. They can be mounted with weapons systems or used as medical and cargo transports.


Which of these vehicles was designed specifically to resist landmines and IEDs?

The Oshkosh M-ATV is what's called an MRAP — a mine resistant ambush protected vehicle that can specifically handle explosions without injuring those inside. They were designed back in 2009 to replace M1114 Hummers.


What branch of the military is going to be using Storm Search and Rescue Tactical Vehicles?

The Storm SRTV was developed in 2013 as a test vehicle. They're air-deployable rescue vehicles in use by the United States Air Force Pararescue and basically look like futuristic dune buggies. Their purpose is to be airdropped into dangerous areas behind enemy lines and rescue pilots who have been shot down.


Which vehicle brought soldiers to shore on the beaches of Normandy on D-Day?

DUKWs, just called "Ducks" for the most part, were amphibious trucks that could drive onshore after being used as transport boats. They were used extensively in World War II by not just the US Army and the US Marines, but they were also shared with British and Soviet forces.


This was nicknamed "The Finger of God." What is it?

The M270 Multiple Launch Rocket System began use in 1983 and was employed for the "shoot and scoot" tactic of rocket launching. Essentially you fire artillery and then drive off quickly before return fire can find you. It worked well.


How much does the massive M1 A2 Abrams tank weigh?

The M1 A2 Abrams is a beast that first saw service in the Persian Gulf, following in the footsteps of the original M1 which dates back to about 1980. Current models have depleted-uranium plates for protection against attacks.


The US produced over 50,000 of these versatile vehicles during WWII. What is it?

The M3 half-track looked like a truck in the front and a tank in the back. It proved useful as a means of personnel transport, an artillery transport, a communications vehicle, anti-aircraft and self-propelled gun among other things.


What kind of equipment does the Oshkosh M1070 transport?

Aso called a HET, or heavy equipment transport, the M1070 looks a lot like a massive flatbed tow truck and is used for hauling tanks. In a pinch, they can also be used to haul anything else that weighs several dozen tons.


The Force Protection Buffalo has a 30-foot arm mounted on it. What for?

The Buffalo is outfitted with numerous defense capabilities to protect it from explosives like mines and IEDs while the arm mounted on the top is designed for ordnance disposal. There was a Decepticon named Bonecrusher in the movie "Transformers" based on the Buffalo.


Who was the M551 amphibious light tank named for?

Civil War Gen. Phillip Sheridan is the namesake of the M551 Sheridan, an armored reconnaissance/airborne assault vehicle that was designed to be airdropped into an area where it could also drive across rivers.


The M4 Sherman tank was named for General Sherman. What was his full name?

William Tecumseh Sherman was a general with the Union Army during the American Civil War. The tank bearing his name saw service during WWII, and upward of 48,000 of them were rolled out for America and its allies.


Do you know what a THAAD protects against?

THAAD stands for Terminal High Altitude Aerial Defense and is an anti-ballistic missile defense system. It's capable of firing short, medium, and intermediate-range missiles. They've been in service since 2008.


When did the M109 howitzer first see use in combat?

The M109 howitzer was deployed during the Vietnam War, replacing the smaller M108 version. It's outfitted with a 155 mm howitzer cannon and has an effective firing range of over 11 miles.


Which of these is called an FAV or "fast attack vehicle?"

The M1161 Growler was something the Marine Corps needed to have developed so they'd have a fast-moving vehicle that could also be transported by the V-22 Osprey. They've been in service since 2009.


What kind of terrain is the Bv 206 designed to handle?

The Swedish-made Bv 206 is an all-terrain carrier used by numerous armed forces all around the world including the US Marines and the National Guard. Its track articulated design makes it especially useful in northern climates since it's essentially a giant snowmobile.


Do you know which of these can tow up to 140 tons and lift up to 35 tons?

The M88 Hercules is a recovery vehicle that can extricate trapped heavy equipment and also make repairs while the crew is under fire. It's been used in conflicts like the Vietnam War and the Persian Gulf War among others.


The M60 AVLB was based on the M60 Patton tank. What does it do?

The M60 AVLB stands for "armored vehicle launched bridge." It's capable of launching a 60-foot scissor-type bridge and retracting it again as well. It's large enough to get most vehicles across small rivers and trenches or gullies.


The LCAC is a massive hovercraft. How much weight can it carry?

The LCAC or Landing Craft Air Cushion is designed to transport equipment from sea to land and can carry a staggering 60-ton payload or up to 75 tons in an overload capacity. It's 87 feet long and can travel on the water at speeds up to 70 knots.


Do you know how many patients can be transported in the M1133 Medical Evacuation Vehicle?

The M1133 carries up to 6 passengers in the modified Stryker vehicle. It has the same basic design as other Strykers that are used for infantry transport as it cuts back on the need for a different skill set when it comes to repairs.


General Omar Bradley has a vehicle named in his honor. What is it?

The Bradley Fighting Vehicle or BFV is actually an entire vehicle platform. The M2 is an infantry vehicle that carries troops while the M3 is a cavalry vehicle with full armament designed for recon.


What vehicle did they call "The Mule?"

The M274 Mule is one of the most bare-bones vehicles in military history. It was essentially a flat surface on wheels, a seat, and a steering wheel on a long column that made it exceptional for being outfitted to different tasks since there was nothing to interfere with hauling, towing or anything else.


What company produced the WLA Liberator?

Harley Davidson's WLA, otherwise known as "the Liberator," saw heavy use during World War II. They weren't front line vehicles. obviously, but they were useful for military police and also for sending off messengers in a hurry. Almost 60,000 of them were produced.


Do you know what kind of vehicle the Commando Stingray is?

The Commando Stingray is a light tank that was actually designed to be a Frankentank, which is to say that it was made with as many parts of pre-existing vehicles as possible in an effort to keep costs down.


There's a popular vehicle-mounted mine detection system named after a dog. What dog is it?

The Husky VMMD, which is used for route clearance in areas laced with explosives, is in use by numerous armed forces around the globe including the US, Canada, Australia, Iraq, Spain, Turkey, South Africa and several others.


After what conflict did the US retire the M60 Patton tank?

Introduced in 1959, the Patton M60 tank saw service throughout the Cold War and even made it all the way to Operation Desert Storm, after which it was effectively retired from service. These days they're still used for training exercises but not much else.


How many wheels does an LAV-25 have?

The LAV-25 light armored vehicle has 8 wheels and works as an amphibious reconnaissance vehicle. They've been in service since 1983 and are planned to stay in service with the Marines until 2035.


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