Mitsubishi Type 73 Light Truck

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Mitsubishi Type 73 Light Truck
JGSDF 0.5t track.jpg
Current Mitsubishi Type 73 Light Truck
Overview
Manufacturer Mitsubishi Motors
Also called 1/2 Ton Truck
Production 1973 - Present
Body and chassis
Class Mini SUV
Layout F4
Related Jeep CJ-3B
Powertrain
Engine Water-cooled 4-cycle, 4-cylinder Diesel engine
Transmission Manual transmission and Automatic transmission
Dimensions
Length 4,140 mm (163.0 in)
Width 1,765 mm (69.5 in)
Height 1,970 mm (77.6 in)
Curb weight 1,940 kg (4,277 lb)

The Mitsubishi Type 73 Light Truck (73式小型トラック 73-shiki kogata torakku?) is a series of military light trucks that are used as mini SUVs in the JSDF. They have been under production by Mitsubishi Motors since 1973. In JSDF service, it is officially known as the 1/2 Ton Truck.[1][2] They are powered by Mitsubishi-made 4-cylinder diesel engines with a total of 123 horsepower.[3]


History[edit]

First generation[edit]

Mitsubishi Type 73 Light Truck Kyū
JGSDF Type73 Light Truck 20081025-2.JPG
A JGSDF Mitsubishi Type 73 Light Truck Kyū with a rear-mounted Sumitomo M2 heavy machine gun in an anti-personnel role.
Overview
Manufacturer Mitsubishi Motors
Also called Mitsubishi Type 73 Light Truck (旧)[4]
Production 1973 - 1997
Body and chassis
Class Mini SUV
Layout F4
Related Jeep CJ-3B
Powertrain
Engine Water-cooled 4-cycle, 4-cylinder Diesel engine
Transmission Manual transmission
Dimensions
Length 3,750 mm (147.6 in)
Width 1,650 mm (65.0 in)
Height 1,950 mm (76.8 in)
Curb weight 1,450 kg (3,197 lb)
Chronology
Predecessor None
Successor Mitsubishi Type 73 Light Truck (Shin)

The first production of the Type 73, known as the Mitsubishi Type 73 Light Truck (Kyū) (73式小型トラック (旧) 73-shiki kogata torakku (kyū)?) was based on the Jeep CJ-3Bs that Mitsubishi Motors had been producing under license from Willys. The first Type 73 Kyūs had been placed into production in 1973[5] with the chassis of the Jeep CJ-3B for basis before they made modifications based on it to create the Mitsubishi CJ-3B-J4 and the Mitsubishi CJ-3B-J4C before it was replaced again by producing the Mitsubishi CJ-5A-J54A.[6] Production continued on before it ended in 1997[5] after the Type 73 Light Truck Shins were placed in production by 1996.[7]

The Kyūs had been exported out of Japan, mostly declared as military surplus vehicles to the Philippines[8] and South Vietnam with the latter using it as one of the main jeeps of the ARVN next to the Willys M606 and M38A1s in the course of the Vietnam War.[9] They had been exported to New Zealand for civilian use.[8]


Second generation[edit]

Mitsubishi Type 73 Light Truck Shīn
Mitsubishi Type 73 Light Truck Shīn fighting vehicle.jpg
A JGSDF Mitsubishi Type 73 Light Truck Shīn with a rear-mounted Sumitomo M2 heavy machine gun in an anti-personnel role.
Overview
Manufacturer Mitsubishi Motors
Also called Mitsubishi Type 73 Light Truck (新)[10]
1/2 Ton Truck[1]
Production 1996 - Present
Body and chassis
Class Mini SUV
Layout F4
Related Mitsubishi Pajero
Powertrain
Engine Water-cooled 4-cycle, 4-cylinder Diesel engine
Transmission 4-speed automatic transmission
Dimensions
Length 4,140 mm (163.0 in)
Width 1,765 mm (69.5 in)
Height 1,970 mm (77.6 in)
Curb weight 1,940 kg (4,277 lb)

The Mitsubishi Type 73 Light Truck (Shin) (73式小型トラック (新) 73-shiki kogata torakku (shin)?) began production in 1996 as Mitsubishi Motors began to slowly phase out the Type 73 Light Truck Kyūs from production and from selective service in the JSDF, using the frame of the Mitsubishi Pajero as a basis.[7]

The Type 73 Light Truck Shin can be mounted with various heavy machine guns and anti-tank missile launchers. But like its predecessor, the Shīn Light Truck can mount Sumitomo M2 machine guns and, for the first time, the Sumitomo MINIMI Light Machine Gun.

When Shin Light Trucks were deployed to Iraq as part of the JIRSG, the vehicles were bulletproofed[11] due to concerns that Iraqi guerrillas would target their vehicles to provoke JSDF troops who, under the restrictions of Article 9 of the Japanese Constitution, are not supposed to participate in any kind of offensive combat operations.[12]


Design[edit]

A comparison of the front grilles of the Kyū (Above) and Shin (Below) light trucks as used by the JSDF.

Both Kyū and Shīn light truck vehicles can be outfitted with various weapon systems such as Kawasaki Type 64 anti-tank pods,[13] Kawasaki Type 79[14] and Kawasaki Type 87 anti-tank missile launchers,[15] Komatsu Type 60 recoilless rifles,[16] Sumitomo MINIMI LMGs[17] and Sumitomo M2 machine guns[17][8] to make them both a mobile anti-tank and anti-personnel vehicle.

Both light truck variants have the tarpaulin hood mounts at the rear as an option.[18][19] They also have rear seats that can be folded up when they are not needed.[19] Air conditioning is installed as a standard feature.

Variants[edit]

While there are no variants to either the Kyū and Shin Light Trucks, a small numbers were produced with small megaphones, roof-mounted single beacons and grille flashers.[20][21] The Light Trucks were painted in white as they were exclusively used by JSDF military police units.[20][21][22]

Users[edit]

  •  Japan - Currently using the Shin Light Trucks. Kyū Light Trucks have been decommissioned from some frontline units, though many are still in service.[8]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b This JSDF name designation is used only for the Mitsubishi Type 73 Light Truck Shīn only.
  2. ^ "1/2t トラック" (in Japanese). Archived from the original on 2012-02-20. Retrieved 2009-01-26. 
  3. ^ "Type 73 Kogata". Military Today. Archived from the original on 2013-06-15. Retrieved 2013-06-15. 
  4. ^ The Kyū designation is given to differentiate Type 73 Light Trucks made from the 1970s to 1997 only.
  5. ^ a b "73式小型トラック(J23・J24型)" (in Japanese). Archived from the original on 2012-03-09. Retrieved 2009-11-04. 
  6. ^ "CJ3B-J4 Military Jeeps". Archived from the original on 2012-03-28. Retrieved 2008-08-18. 
  7. ^ a b "1/2tトラック(73式小型トラック・V16型)" (in Japanese). Archived from the original on 2012-03-09. Retrieved 2009-11-04. 
  8. ^ a b c d "Mitsubishi Military Jeep Photos". Archived from the original on 2010-03-29. Retrieved 2008-08-18. 
  9. ^ "CJ3B-J4 Military Jeeps in Vietnam". Archived from the original on 2010-04-01. Retrieved 2008-08-18. 
  10. ^ The Shīn designation is given to differentiate Type 73 Light Trucks made after 1997 to the present.
  11. ^ 平成17年度所管公益法人等との間で締結された随意契約の緊急点検結果等について(防衛省) (PDF) (in Japanese). Archived from the original on 2013-02-22. Retrieved 2010-01-10. 
  12. ^ "Japan's About-Face". Public Broadcasting System. 2011-06-11. Archived from the original on 2013-06-15. Retrieved 2013-06-15. 
  13. ^ 64式 対戦車誘導弾 (in Japanese). Retrieved 2009-11-04. 
  14. ^ 79式 対舟艇対戦車誘導弾 (in Japanese). Archived from the original on 2012-03-09. Retrieved 2009-11-04. 
  15. ^ 87式 対戦車誘導弾 (in Japanese). Archived from the original on 2012-03-09. Retrieved 2009-11-04. 
  16. ^ "60式 106mm無反動砲" (in Japanese). Archived from the original on 2012-03-09. Retrieved 2009-11-04. 
  17. ^ a b "1/2tトラック(73式小型トラック/偵察用)" (in Japanese). Archived from the original on 2012-03-09. Retrieved 2009-11-04. 
  18. ^ 旧・73式小型トラック 長きに渡り隊員に親しまれた通称「ジープ」 (in Japanese). Japanese Ground Self-Defense Forces. Archived from the original on 2013-06-15. Retrieved 2013-06-15. 
  19. ^ a b 73式小型トラック 旧・新 (in Japanese). Archived from the original on 2013-06-15. Retrieved 2013-06-15. 
  20. ^ a b "73式 小型トラック(J23A・J25A型)警務隊用" (in Japanese). Retrieved 2009-11-04. 
  21. ^ a b "1/2tトラック(73式小型トラック・V16型)警務用" (in Japanese). Retrieved 2009-11-04. 
  22. ^ 新73式小型トラック (in Japanese). Japanese Ground Self-Defense Forces. Archived from the original on 2013-06-15. Retrieved 2013-06-15. 
  • Kenkyusha's New Japanese-English Dictionary, Kenkyusha Limited, Tokyo 1991, ISBN 4-7674-2015-6

External links[edit]