39M Csaba

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39M Csaba
39M Csaba armored scout car
Type Armored car
Place of origin Kingdom of Hungary
Service history
In service 1939 -
Used by Hungarian Army
Wars Second World War
Production history
Designer Nicholas Straussler
Designed 1930s
Manufacturer Weiss Manfred, Csepel
Produced 1939 - 1944
Weight 5.95 tonnes
Length 14 ft 8 in (4.52 m)
Width 6 ft 10 in (2.1 m)
Height 7 ft 4 in (2.27 m)
Crew 3

Armour 9 mm
20 mm cannon
2 x 8 mm MG
Engine Ford, 8-cylinder
93 mi (150 km)
Speed 40 mph (65 km/h)

The 39M Csaba was an armoured scout car produced for the Royal Hungarian Army during World War II.


Rear view of a 39M Csaba, showing the reverse, driving position

Hungarian expatriate Nicholas Straussler designed several armoured cars for Britain while living there between the two world wars. Straussler came to an agreement with the Weiss Manfred factory of Csepel, Budapest to produce vehicles from his designs for use in his home country - the most prominent was the Csaba (named after the son of Attila the Hun) which was designed based on his experience of the Alvis AC2 armoured car.

After successful trials in 1939, the Hungarian Army placed an order for 61, and a further order for an additional 40 vehicles was placed in 1940. Of these, twenty were used as actual fighting vehicles, with the remainder serving as armoured command cars and reconnaissance vehicles.

The Csaba had a 20 mm cannon and an 8 mm machine gun fixed on a centrally mounted turret, with 9 mm armoured plating. The vehicle was also equipped with a detachable 8 mm light machine gun fired through the rear hatch in the anti-aircraft role. The crew could dismount and carry this MG when conducting reconnaissance on foot. It also had two driving positions - one at the front as normal, and an additional one at the rear.

The 40M Csaba was a command version armed only with the turret-mounted 8 mm machine gun. This vehicle was fitted with a second R-4T radio, which had a large lattice radio mast.




  • J C M Probst. "Hungarian armour during WW2". Airfix Magazine (September 1976). 

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