A narco tank (also called rhino truck, or monstruo, Spanish for monster) is an improvised fighting vehicle made from a civilian truck with improvised vehicle armour, which combines operational mobility, tactical offensive, and defensive capabilities. They are used by the drug cartels and other gangs in the Mexican Drug War. They are often modified semitrucks, SUVs, or other large vehicles not intended for such a purpose. They come equipped with varying levels of protection and attack capability, but even smaller narco tanks are plated with two inches of steel. About twenty such armored trucks have been seized in Tamaulipas state alone, four of which were later destroyed. Recently, armor has been installed on the interior rather than outside the vehicle to draw away suspicion from rival drug cartels and the Mexican government. On May 22, 2011, one such "tank" was seized in Jalisco.
In 2015, Mexican authorities found a narco tank factory in Nuevo Laredo that had eight vehicles in it, which were in the process of having armor plates with gun holes added to them. Some narco tanks have improvised battering rams on the front to break through roadblocks.
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- Narco tanks found by the Mexican authorities
- Earlier version of a narco tank
- Los "monstruos" del narco
- Tanks Encyclopedia provides an excellent look into Narco Tanks
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