Built by the Likachev Motor Plant in Moscow, the BAV-485 amphibious truck entered service with the forces of the Warsaw Pact in 1952. The vehicle itself was produced to complement the smaller GAZ 46 and in design was somewhat similar to the World War II American DUKW in both load-carrying capability (2,500 kg payload) and performance.

Utilising many of the components of the ZIL 151-truck (including incorporating many of the later improvement to the truck as they were introduced), the BAV-485 was powered by a 110bhp ZIL-123 6-cylinder petrol engine which gave the vehicle a maximum road speed of 37mph and a range of 298 miles.

The hull, which closely resembled that of the DUKW, incorporated a drop-down tail gate which allowed small vehicles to be driven directly into the Cargo Hold (using special ramps to pass over the sills). A better system than that used on the US vehicle where cargo needed be hoisted over the sides. Waterproofing of the cargo-hold was also assisted by the provision of a canvas cover over the hold and a canvas dodger fitted to the bows.

Whilst largely replaced in front line Red Army Service by the larger PTS during the mid-1960s the BAV was still a regular sight in many a Warsaw Pact and other Communist equipped Armies (including occasionally being seen in the Middle East) well up to the late 1970s.

: * 1. The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Military Vehicles (Ian Hogg and John Weeks, Hamlyn, 1980) * 2. Armored Fighting Vehicles (Philip Trewbitt, Dempsey-Parr, 1999) :

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