A chameleon named Iveco VM 90

(To Gianluca Celentano)

Why "chameleon"? It is a metaphorical term to give the idea of ​​how many mutations can take on this Iveco project; there is even an amphibious, with the same mechanics and engine. Here the association with the cute reptile is surely more realistic, separate measures.

A kind of truck not really a jeep

The project dates back to the 78 but the debut in the barracks reaches between the years 80 and '90 a period when Fiat had no alternative in anticipation for the replacement of the mythical AR 76.

In fact, it served a "multipurpose" operating vehicle suitable for the displacement of the company teams and the password set by the military leaders was eloquent: contained measures and maneuverability on all operational land use.

The consolidated Iveco developed the "Daily" project with multiple configurations that initially reported the brand Alfa Romeo AR 8;

A "work" machine was born to meet all the domestic and foreign market needs. Among the available versions, the 4X4 short-range series did not fail to fascinate the military environment.

Tests and strict military tests declare the success of Iveco Daily within off e on road and was immediately wheeled according to the operational requirements of the historic Boneschi bodywork.

The most popular configurations by the Armed Forces, Bodies and Firefighters are still: Torpedo, Ambulance, Protected, Cassonato and Cisterna with VM90T3 initials for the military and 40E10 W / M, 40E13 and 40E15 for civilians.

Success goes to TV

Do you remember the mega Orange Overland trucks? Yes, the "330.30 Iveco" very rare in Italy, but very popular in Australia and the world.

The organization for the UNICEF mission led by friend Beppe Tenti in the "Overland" TV program decided to use VM 90 as the world's leading vehicle column for the giant orange I 330.30.

If Overland was baptism - even advertising - for a winning design of Italian vehicle production, I must also say that in the world of defense it was tangible to the awareness that after the AR 76 there was no longer an operating vehicle lying between l 'car and truck.

With Fiat's gradual retirement Campagnola AR 76 - I carry it in my heart - Italy was left without an off-road vehicle. Many of you will now be thinking about Massif, which only came into production only 15 years later, to 2007. The Iveco Massif absolutely unheard of is born in Spain by the Santana Motor on the license of the Land Rover but with the Italian VM 3.0 engine. It is easy to think that bilateral agreements between Italy and the United Kingdom have given way to the land rather than to the 4x4 Mediterranean. With the new century, therefore, the "interchange" of institutional vehicles with other states began.

But we know better about the versions ...

With the evolution of the technique, the 4 cylinders (initially sucked) Sofim passed from the 2500 cc to 75 horses to superimposed 3000 variable geometry with about 170 horses. Modern VM mounts the evolution of this indestructible "base" with 2.7 displacement for 150 power horses. But in circulation, there are probably more 2.5 VM 103 horses, slightly elevated for armored versions.

About the version Torpedo, The military 9 plus the conductor can count on sufficient space even for the tactical backpack placed in front of the knees. On all series there is a reliable mechanics and differential 3, the central one that divides the torque on the front axle; there is also a lack of leverage and differentials which, if blocked, allow the VM to cross 60% gradients. The angle of outbound and outbound attachment makes it a suitable vehicle for challenging but still not exasperated testing.

A vehicle appreciated by many armies and we find it even in China.

The protected version "P", both troop carriage and ambulance has wedge-shaped surfaces and is tested for 7,62 (B6 level) standards; beyond it is better to trust the Lynx.

The ambulance can accommodate 2 patients plus the health care provider and the driver. Tank and battery are internal and sealed. Only the air intakes and the perimeter microphone / microphone connect with the outside.

The "light" ambulance version instead has 4 seats that can be folded up whenever needed, so everything is strictly compliant with the NATO regulations.

Roam on the roof - in the boxed versions - to apply "splinter shapes" or patches, perhaps, using the front as a large scale; you lean on the bumper, then on the bonnet, on the roof and finally jump on the chassis.

The series until the end of the year 90 lights up with the nail after attaching the batteries, the latest ones have the normal key and isolation key.

After a break in VM production this seems to be resumed with many mechanical and electrical upgrades, even under emission regulations.

Inside a ford

Of course; possibly tire-carriers with too many kilometers and the really very slim surface, I was moved by the stream to a puddle of a meter or more. Situation quite frequent and embarrassing at a point where usually only ACTLs pass, much heavier; My boss stayed in silence with a fixed and unbelieving look ... I remember saying "quiet now we go out". I inserted the differential block and the third reduced and the VM left without hesitation towards a dry, "sloping" cobblestone wall; the front axle rises steadily in the last stroke and as soon as the plane reaches, the VM structure has sat softly on the lawn, handling the downhill with the gas.

I was able to bring out the medium, but the look of the cape had not changed much, however thanks to the VM we were out of the ford.

How are you

It is a car that needs an appropriate driving school and a training from higher patents, even though it has a mass around three tonnes (they go to seven for the protected). In FF.AA they tell me that it is conducive to enabling Mod. 3 while in the Fire Brigade with the Terrestrial III. Given that this is a high vehicle and does not go very well especially with the asphalt wet for a tendency to understeer that in some cases passes "without warning much" to the oversteer. The standard tires compared to the "road" make the difference. We must guide and balance it especially with the accelerator by using the displacement of the masses to stabilize it. A bit like you did with the Alfa 75 for those who had the pleasure of tasting the guide. The third gear, if you do not have the habit of double disengagement (double-barreled) with the years starts to scratch and perhaps the external rear-view mirrors could be increased.

The steering wheel and seat are adjustable across the entire series and in the protected version, the guide with bulletproof jacket requires a little more seat backrest to compensate for the thickness of the kevlar.

Air conditioning is perhaps its true neo, while the aspirators of the safe are quick and efficient. The safe then it has a much softer suspension calibration resulting in more comfortable driving. It has been sealed inside however in all directions unless you travel with the sliding open toes.

Be careful not to forget the front wheel drive or worse the differential lock; the VM does not abandon us, but in the long run these failures are paid. The type of window that can be stacked does not allow the elbow to rest on the door and perhaps this is a good thing.

The Transmission Weapon has placed on a truck version a "mobile satellite station Selex TSM 305 S for intercontinental connections as well. I can not - if you give it to me - as a former transmitter do not give a warm greetings to all the broadcast friends!

Civil or Military Restyling?

Even here there are not many enthusiasts and there are really many opportunities on the market with less than 100 thousand km. The engines exceed one million miles anyway. However, if the choice is focused on using adventure and leisure, it is best to orient yourself to specimens produced up to the early 90 years. They are much simpler and more spartan and purely military.

A Torpedo could be a "minibus"

Certainly for you, in the event of a purchase, the seller will think of removing a seat and making it homologate. And already ... in fact the number of occupants is equal to 10 and for the CdS falls into the category minibus: in essence we should have at least the D1 license to conduct our new purchase.

The new Daily, beyond the electronics (more or less questionable) are very comfortable and the driver's seat is similar to that of the new Fiat Duchy, with changeover to the dash so much to give an idea. Off-road performance (unless the body is unmanaged) are, however, limited in comparison with the latest series for military use. I would have no doubt about a former Army.

I have to stop now even though the ideas are really many. Soon I'll be yours to talk about ...

(photo: web)