|Entered service in||1978|
|Dimensions and weight|
|Total weight in combat order||14.5 t|
|Overall length||6 930 mm|
|Chassis length||6 930 mm|
|Overall width||3 080 mm|
|Overall height||2 400 mm|
|Main gun||20-mm automatic gun|
|Engine power||320 h.p.|
|Maximum road speed||80 km/h|
|Maximum amphibious speed on water||12 km/h|
|Autonomy on roads||800 km|
|Vertical step||0.5 m|
Pioniererkundgungs Kfz) vehicle was developed by "Rheinmetall-Henkel"
for Bundesver armed forces. It is intended to make water obstacle
recognition, as European battle theatre has a great number of lakes and
APE vehicle was first used during "Blue Danube" Bundesver corps training which took place on September1978. At the moment APE is the main engineering reconnaissance vehicle of the Bundesver armed forces.
Vehicle is based on German armored personnel carrier Tpz-1. The main difference is 4 x 4 wheel formula instead of 6 x 6 used with armored personnel carrier. It allowed to considerably decrease vehicles weight and to increase amphibious features. APE moves on water using tunable blade screws placed rear as well as Tpz-1. Screws use main engine rotation power threw cardan-joints. Maximum amphibious speed on water reaches 12 km/h. Vehicle is fitted with wide-profile high-diameter tyres to increase cross-country abilities. Tyres are also fitted with adjustable centralized pressure system. Vehicle is able to manage 1 m width trench, 0.5 m vertical step and 37º slope.
Vehicle is fitted with special electronic equipment preparing data on water obstacles and shows it on GPS type electronic maps. It's electronic equipment is able to measure water obstacles depth and width, stream speed. Furthermore it is able to designate ground type and shore slopes. Vehicle is fitted with modern communication devices, Nuclear Biological Chemical protection system, fire prevention system, and water pumps which allow vehicle to keep float ability even hit by small caliber projectiles or mines.
As far as APE is intended to be used in frontline divisions it was fitted with quiet powerful armament - 20-mm automatic gun. Additional armament consists from smoke grenade launchers placed from the doth sides of the hull.
Landing compartment is able to take onboard combat engineers, mines or mine search equipment. From the beginning of it's serial production the Bundesver armed forces got 120 APE reconnaissance vehicles.