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South African Armoured Corps
Active 1946 - present (SAAC)
Country  South Africa
Branch South African Army
Type Armor
Role Provides the Army with “battle winning shock action and firepower.”
“To provide combat-ready armour forces to CSANDF.”[1]
Motto(s) Pectore Sicut Ferro (With a chest of steel)
Colors Blue and Orange
Equipment Olifant tank
Rooikat Armoured car
Beret Colour Black

The South African Army Armour Formation provides an Armour capability to the South African Army. The Formation came into being as part of a restructure and replaced the Armoured Corps.

History[edit | edit source]

South Africa employed armoured cars as early as 1915 during its invasion of the then-German South West Africa (now Namibia). After the end of the First World War a single Whippet light tank was purchased for the UDF and was operationally employed during the 1922 Rand revolt. The tank in question is now on display at the Army College at Thaba Tshwane. The formation of an armoured corps was proposed in 1924.3 An armoured car section was formed the next year when two Vickers machine gun-armed Crosleys and two medium tanks were imported from Britain.[2]

During the severe economic depression of 1933, the government established the Special Service Battalion (SSB) on 1 May 1933 as a job opportunities and social upliftment project. The Springbok was first used as symbol for this unit until it was changed to the national flower - the Protea - in July 1934, which is still used today.

The SSB was converted to an Armoured Car Regiment at the start of the Second World War, and later to a Tank Regiment. In April 1943 the SSB was deployed in North Africa and used a black beret sporting silver proteas as badge and a flash with orange, white and blue as its colours.

When the SA Armoured Corps was officially proclaimed in 1946 and SSB included in the corps as the only full-time unit, its symbols and colours were incorporated[3]

Structure[edit | edit source]

All armour is assigned to the SA Army Armour Formation under the charge of a General Officer Commanding (GOC).

The formation is structured as follows:

Training[edit | edit source]

Tank units[edit | edit source]

These units are equipped with the Olifant Mk1B main battle tank.

Regular Force

Reserve Force

Armoured Car Units[edit | edit source]

These units are equipped with the Rooikat armoured fighting vehicle.

Regular Force

Reserve Force

References[edit | edit source]

External links[edit | edit source]

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