The 17 pounder Self Propelled Archer entered in service in October 1944. The gun was mounted in an open top box with the gun facing towards the rear of the vehicle. This gave the vehicle a low silhouette and kept down the overall length. Having to reverse the vehicle into its firing position fitted with the British policy of using its anti-tank guns in a defensive or ambush role. It also meant that having fired, the vehicle could quickly drive away to another position.
The 17 pounder Self Propelled Archer saw service in both North West Europe and Italy. By the end of the war 655 vehicles had been produced. The equipment continued to serve into the 1950’s with the Royal Armoured Corps who now had responsibility for anti-tank. The Egyptian Army received 200 after the 1948 war with Israel and used them against that country in 1952.
As for the towed 17 pounder
As for the towed 17 pounder except as below
|Elevation||-7½° to +15°|
|Traverse||11° Left & Right|
|Length||21 feet 11 inches (6.7 metres)|
|Width||9 feet (2.76 metres)|
|Height||7 feet 4 inches (2.25 metres)|
|Armour||14 – 60 mm (0.55 – 2.36 inches)|
|Operational range||140 miles (230 kms) on roads|
|Maximum speed||20 mph (32 Km/h) – Off road 8 mph (13 Km/h)|
Performance and Ammunition
As for towed 17 pounder