M561 Gama Goat Detail in Action
Conceived at a time when the US Army was seeking to revolutionize its tactical vehicle fleet, the Gama Goat showed considerable promise. Deriving its name from its designer, Roger Gamaunt, the Gama Goat was initially a project of aerospace giant Chance-Vought. The all-wheel drive vehicle with steerable axles at each end and a flexible connection between the halves of its two-part body provide agile in testing. The flexibility gave the vehicle sure footing, and the body was designed to be amphibious. Sadly, the production M561 Gama Goats, assembled by Consolidated Diesel Electric, failed to live up to the promise of the test vehicles, leading to a Congressional investigation into both the vehicle performance and cost overruns. Expense modifications and retrofitting delayed the fielding of the vehicle. Troops using these engineering marvels either loved it, or hated it, with seemingly no middle ground. Ultimately, the vehicle saw use with US forces stateside, as well as in Germany and Korea, and the M561 was used during the invasion of Grenada. Chronicles the design, development, testing and field use of this iconic vehicle, as well as showcasing the nuances of the remarkable design with images of immaculately preserved examples. Illustrated with over 200 photographs - including 143 vintage photos and 74 color photos; 80 pages.
By David Doyle