Type Wheeled Amphibious Armored Personnel Carrier
Place of origin Soviet Union
Service history
In service 13 December 1959[1][2] – present
Used by See Operators
Wars See List of Conflicts
Production history
Designer V. A. Dedkov
Designed 1955[2]
Manufacturer Gorkovsky Avtomobilny Zavod (USSR)
Ratmil Regie Autonoma (Romania, TAB-71)
Produced 1960 – 1976 (USSR)[1]
Number built ~25,000 (USSR)[3]
+1,872 (Romania, TAB-71)[4]
Variants See Variants
Specifications (BTR-60PB)
Weight 10.3 tonnes (11.4 tons)[1]
Length 7.56 m[5][6]
Width 2.83 m (9.28 ft)[6]
Height 2.31 m (7.58 ft)[5][6]
Crew 3 + 14 passengers (original roofless BTR-60P had 2+14 capacity, reduced to 2+12 in BTR-60PA and 2+8 in BTR-60PB)[7][8]

Armor Welded steel[2]
7 mm at 86° hull upper front[2][6]
9 mm at 47° hull lower front[2][6]
7 mm hull sides[6]
5 mm hull upper rear[6]
7 mm hull lower rear[6]
5 mm hull floor[6]
7 mm hull roof[6]
10 mm turret front[9]
7 mm turret sides[6]
7 mm turret sear[6]
7 mm turret roof[6]
14.5mm KPVT heavy machine gun (500 rounds)[6]
7.62 mm PKT tank coaxial machine gun (3,000 rounds)[6]
Engine 2×GAZ-40P 6-cylinder gasoline[1]
90 hp (67 kW) each[1][2][6][10][11][12]
180 hp (134 kW) (combined)
Power/weight 18.4 hp/tonne (13.7 kW/tonne)
Suspension wheeled 8×8
Ground clearance 475 mm (18.7 in)[6]
Fuel capacity 290 l (76.6 g)[6]
500 km (310.7 mi)[6]
Speed 80 km/h (49.7 mi/h) on road
10 km/h (6.2 mi/h) in water[6]

The BTR-60 is the first vehicle in a series of Soviet eight-wheeled armoured personnel carriers (APCs). It was developed in the late 1950s as a replacement for the BTR-152 and was seen in public for the first time in 1961. BTR stands for Bronetransporter (БТР, Бронетранспортер, literally "armoured transporter").[13]



The BTR-152 and BTR-40, the first two Soviet mass-produced APCs developed after the Second World War, gave the Soviet Army useful experience with wheeled armoured personnel carriers. However, even as they were designed, they weren't suited for the needs of the Soviet Army as they lacked a roof (which was added in later versions designated BTR-152K and BTR-40B respectively). The low combat values of the BTR-152 and BTR-40 were exposed when the Egyptian Army used them during the Suez Crisis. This was one of the reasons why the new APC was developed.[1]

Between 1956 and 1957, a decision was made to convert all rifle and mechanized divisions into motor rifle divisions and a requirement for a new transport vehicle was drawn up.

ZiL-153 at the Kubinka Tank Museum.

Development proceeded along two paths: a more expensive vehicle that would eventually become the BMP-1, for use in tank divisions, and a cheaper vehicle for use in motor rifle divisions, that would eventually become the BTR-60. Two design bureaus were given the requirements, GAZ led by V. A. Dedkov,[2] and ZiL led by Rodionov and Orlov. The requirements stated that the vehicle should have all wheel drive, at least two turnable axles, independent suspension as well as mobility and fording capabilities allowing it to operate alongside tanks. The vehicle was also supposed to be amphibious.[1] The GAZ design team started to work on the new APC during the winter of 1956. Despite the fact that the army wanted a fully roofed vehicle with NBC protection system, the GAZ design did not have those features. It was argued that firing from the cramped interior would be difficult and that the limitation of losses wasn't a priority.[1] The prototype was built between 1957 and 1958.[2] ZiL developed a 6x6 design, the ZiL-153, similar in hull shape to the GAZ design. There were also three other 8x8 prototypes: Ob'yekt 560 (also known as MMZ-560[14]), Ob'yekt 1015 (developed by KAZ[14]), Ob'yekt 1015B (developed by KAZ,[14] it had with a turret-mounted armament and stream propellers,[1] also known as BTR-1015B[14]) and Ob'yekt 1020B (developed by KAZ[14]). All prototypes were submitted to and passed state trials in 1959. Even though the Ob'yekt 1015B performed best, the GAZ design was selected and given the designation BTR-60P.[1][2] Officially, the committee that made the decision did so because of the GAZ plant's production capabilities and experience. The main reason was that the GAZ design was the simplest and cheapest one and introduced the lowest amount of technological advancements, which made it easier to put into mass production.[1]

BTR-60P had open-roofed crew and troop compartments, which was deemed to be a serious disadvantage. Accordingly, a new version with an armoured roof, designated BTR-60PA, entered production in 1963. This new version's capacity was reduced from 16 soldiers to 14 soldiers.

The appearance of the German HS.30 APC, which was armed with a 20 mm cannon, prompted the addition of the conical BPU-1 turret. This turret, which was originally developed for the BRDM-2 amphibious armoured scout car, was armed with the KPVT 14.5 mm heavy machine gun and a PKT 7.62 mm tank machine gun. The new vehicle was designated the BTR-60PAI and entered production in 1965. It was, however, quickly replaced by the BTR-60PB, which had a better sighting system for the machine guns.


BTR-60 was a revolutionary design for its time.[2][10] It had a non-standard layout for an APC; the crew compartment was in the front, the troop compartment in the middle and the engine compartment in the rear.[2] This meant that, while the BTR-60 didn't share some of the weaknesses that other APCs had, it had several disadvantages of its own.


The driver's station.

In the BTR-60, the crew compartment is located in the front of the vehicle and had a roof - unlike the troop compartment, which first received one with the introduction of the BTR-60PA. In the BTR-60P and BTR-60PA, the crew consists of a driver and a commander. The driver's seat is on the left and commander's seat is on the right. In the BTR-60PAI, BTR-60PB and BTR-60PZ, the crew consists of a driver, a commander and a gunner. The position of the driver and commander stations remained unchanged in later models. The gunner operates the BPU-1 turret, using the PP-61A optical sight. In the BTR-60P, both the driver and commander manned their positions by entering the vehicle through the sides. The BTR-60PA introduced two hatches over their stations and crew members had to climb on top of the vehicle to use them. The entry method did not change in later production models. The BTR-60B introduced a side door for the gunner on the right side, and firing ports for both the driver and commander, and two for the gunner, one on each side. (For more information on the BTR-60's firing port see the troop compartment section). Both the driver and the commander have forward views through bulletproof windshields, onto which steel covers can be lowered. In the BTR-60P and BTR-60PA, the covers had vision slots, and additional slots on both sides of the crew compartment. These were removed in the BTR-60PB in favor of two periscopes on each side. In early models of the BTR-60P and BTR-60PA, only the driver had a periscope, while the commander had a removable OU-3 infrared searchlight. In the BTR-60PB, both the driver and the commander have three periscopes in the front (the commander's center periscope can be hard to see as it's just below the OU-3 infrared light). The vehicle was usually equipped with an R-113 radio; however,some models used the R-123. The initial BTR-60P production model lacked night-vision and had only four headlights (two infrared, two white, one of each kind per side, these remained in all BTR-60 models). Late BTR-60P models were fitted with night-vision; the TKN-1 connected with the OU-3 infrared searchlight for the commander and the TWN-2 for the driver. This remained unchanged in later models.[1][2]

Troop compartment

The troop compartment is behind the crew compartment and in front of the engine compartment. The BTR-60P can transport up to 16 fully equipped soldiers. This number reduced to 14 in BTR-60PB. As the BTR-60P didn't have a roof, it was covered with a tarpaulin when traveling in bad weather conditions. It was also covered with bows and canvas. Also, all BTR-60 models had three firing ports on each upper side of the hull through which the infantry being transported could fire at the enemy with their personal weapons. The difference between models was in the position of these three firing ports. The BTR-60P and BTR-60PA had the firing ports positioned in a row between the middle and the front part of the troop compartment. In the BTR-60PB, the firing ports were relocated; one was next to the driver and commander, one next to the gunner and one in the side of the troop compartment.[2][5]

Because of the engine placement (in the rear of the vehicle), transported infantry must mount and dismount through the sides in the BTR-60P or through the roof hatches in the roofed BTR-60PA, BTR-60PB, and BTR-60PZ variants. To help the infantry to mount and dismount the vehicle, the BTR-60P had two steps on each side of the hull, one between the first and second pair of road wheels and the other between the third and fourth pair of wheels. It also had two vertical hand rails on each side of the troop compartment, as well as an angled horizontal one on the left-hand side of the hull next to the engine compartment. The BTR-60PA introduced yet another step on each side of the hull between the second and third pair of wheels, as well as six horizontal hand rails on each side of the vehicle, three on the lower side and three on the upper side. The vertical ones were removed, while yet another angled horizontal one was added on the right-hand side of the hull next to the engine compartment. In the BTR-60PB, the number of hand rails decreased from six to five on each side of the hull; the rear upper hand rail was removed from he right side, whereas the center upper one was removed from the left side. The BTR-60P has two doors on each side of the troop compartment (one in the front and one in the rear), but infantry still had to dismount through the sides.[1] The side doors were removed in the BTR-60PA.[12] They were used mostly as emergency exits and as auxiliary firing ports. In the BTR-60PB, a side door was added on the front left of the troop compartment.


The hull armour is made from welded steel and provides protection against small arms fire and shrapnel.[1][2] The frontal armour can withstand 7.62 mm bullets from any range. The rest of the armour can withstand 7.62 mm bullets from a range of 100 m.[2]

The BTR-60P did not have a roof over the troop compartment, which made a weakness that could easily be exploited - even the simplest explosives could take out a BTR-60P. The new BTR design with a roof was called the BTR-60PA.

Armour thickness is as follows:


  • Upper front: 7 mm at 86°[2][6]
  • Lower front: 9 mm at 47°[2][6]
  • Sides: 7 mm[6]
  • Upper rear: 5 mm[6]
  • Lower rear: 7 mm[6]
  • Floor: 5 mm[6]
  • Roof: 7 mm (over the troop compartment since BTR-60PA)[6]

Turret (since BTR-60PAI):

  • Front: 10 mm[9]
  • Sides: 7 mm[6]
  • Rear: 7 mm[6]
  • Roof: 7 mm[6]


The BTR-60 has a 8x8 suspension. Originally, there were difficulties in finding a suitable engine for it: the six-cylinder GAZ-40P gasoline engine, which produces 90 hp, had insufficient power, while the 205-hp YaAZ-206B was too heavy. Instead, the BTR was fitted with two six-cylinder gasoline GAZ-40P[1] engines (67 kW)[1][2][6][10][11][12] located side by side in the rear of the vehicle. The combined power of the engines is 180 hp (134 kW). Each engine propels two of the vehicle's axles. The engine on the right propels the second and the fourth axles, while the one on the left propels the first and the third axles. Each engine has its own four-speed gear box with a single-shielded hydraulically controlled clutch and an exhaust. Each axle has its own differential and is hung on transversal torsion bars. The first two axles each have two hydraulic absorbers, while the third and fourth only have one. The first and second pair of wheels can be turned. The gaps between the first and second axles and between the third and fourth axles are even. The gap between the second and third axles is slightly larger than the other ones.[1][2][6][12]

The two-engines setup has an advantage in the fact that each engine could work without the other. This means that if one engine is disabled, it doesn't affect the other one and the vehicle can still move, albeit with reduced speed. This setup, however, caused several problems that either do not exist in single-engined vehicles or weren't as serious: the design itself was complicated and the amount of work that had to be done during exploitation and repair was higher than in vehicles with a single engine. The engines themselves were originally intended for truck use, which meant that they were working in extreme conditions not originally envisioned for them. Because of this, engine breakdowns were frequent. The vehicle also used large amounts of fuel and caught fire easily. Despite all this, the two-engines setup was used in all BTR-60 production models as well as most variants of the BTR-70. The single-engine setup was introduced in the BTR-80.[1]

Ex-Egyptian or ex-Syrian BTR-60PB, in the Yad la-Shiryon museum, Israel, 2005. Notice the exposed water jet with both of its lids opened.

Amphibious capability

The BTR-60 is fully amphibious, propelled in the water by a jet centrally mounted at the rear of the hull.[2] It was, however, prone to breakdowns.[1] When not in use, it is protected by the sideways opening lids. Before entering the water, the trim vane at the front of the hull should be erected to prevent water from flooding over the bow. While in its traveling position, it serves as additional lower frontal armor.

Production models

Characteristics of the BTR-60 production models
BTR-60P early BTR-60PA BTR-60PA BTR-60PA-1 BTR-60PAI BTR-60PB
9.8[15] 10.2[15] 10.3[15] ? 10.3[15]
2.06 m[11] 2.31 m[5][6]
Crew 2 + 16[5][6] 3 + 14[5]
Primary armament 7.62 mm PKT, SGMB or PKB tank/medium/general-purpose machine gun (2,000 rounds)[6] 12.7 mm DShK 1938/46 heavy machine gun (500 rounds)[6] 14.5 mm KPVT heavy machine gun
(500 rounds)[6]
Secondary armament 2 x 7.62 mm PKT, SGMB or PKB tank/medium/general-purpose machine guns (3,000 rounds) mounted on the sides of the troop compartment (optional)[6] 7.62 mm PKT coaxial tank machine gun (3,000 rounds)[6]
Power-to-weight ratio
? 17.5

Production history

BTR-60s were produced by Gorkovsky Avtomobilny Zavod (GAZ). The BTR-60P was produced between 1960 and 1963.[1] The BTR-60PA entered production in 1963,[1][11] followed by the BTR-60PA-1 in 1965. Both the BTR-60PA and BTR-60PA-1 were produced until 1966.[1] The BTR-60PAI also entered production in 1965,[1] but was quickly replaced in 1966 by the BTR-60PB, which had a better sighting system for the machine guns. The BTR-60PB remained in production until 1976, when it was superseded by the BTR-70.[1] According to Western estimates, around 25,000 BTR-60s were produced by GAZ.[3] During BTR-80 production, and therefore after BTR-60 production had ended, there was a special production run of 100 BTR-60PBs, some of which have been exported to Iraq.[12]

Service history

Soviet Union

An order to enter the BTR-60P into Soviet Army service was issued on 13 December 1959. However, production didn't start until 1960.[1] The first BTR-60Ps were delivered in 1960. It first entered service with the Soviet Army and later the Soviet naval infantry. The BTR-60 entered service with the Soviet military at the time when the USSR was arming on a mass scale.[1] In the early 1960s, it replaced the BTR-152 in the role of the basic APC. The BTR-60P was first seen by the West in 1961. The BTR-60PA entered service with the Soviet Army in 1963, the BTR-60PA-1 and BTR-60PAI entered service in 1965, the BTR-60PB in 1966, the BTR-60PZ in 1972 and the BTR-60PBK in 1975. As newer models of the BTR-60 appeared, the older ones were gradually withdrawn from front-line service. A number of old BTR-60Ps were converted into repair vehicles.[12]

The first use of Soviet BTR-60s during a conflict happened during the Warsaw Pact 1968 Invasion of Czechoslovakia. However, actual combat was scarce.[3][16]

In the 1980s, most of the BTR-60s in the Soviet army had been replaced by the BTR-70 and BTR-80; however, a large number was still operated by second-line and border troops. According to the data provided by the USSR during the signing of the CFE Treaty in 1990, there were 4,191 BTR-60s in service with the units stationed in the European part of the Soviet Union.[17]

Sino-Soviet border conflict

The first real combat use of the BTR-60 took place during the Sino-Soviet border conflict on Zhenbao Island (Damansky Island at the time) in March 1969. The frontier units operating on the island were equipped with BTR-60PBs, while the 57th border detachment group was equipped with BTR-50Ps and BTR-50PKs. The BTR-60 proved to be a good vehicle, although it sustained high losses due to the large number of RPGs used by the Chinese and mistakes made by the commanders of the APCs, which originated from the low amount of experience in combat use of the new vehicles.[18] The high losses due to RPG hits wasn't unexpected, as the BTR-60's armour was designed to protect the vehicle from small arms fire and shrapnel, and not specialized anti-tank weapons. The most effective tactic found for using BTR-60PBs was in covering the dismounted infantry.[18] This is a job more suited for infantry fighting vehicles than armoured personnel carriers, whose main role is transporting infantry to the battlefield and providing them with armour protection during that time - however, it must be noted that the BMP-1, the world's first infantry fighting vehicle, started production in 1966 and therefore Soviet Army had very small numbers of those vehicles available at the time of Sino-Soviet border conflict. During the fights in March, the Chinese managed to capture four BTR-60PBs and one T-62 MBT.[3]

BTR-60PBs were used again during the border conflict east of Lake Zhalanashkol in Kazakhstan (Kazakh SSR at the time) in August 1969. During the fighting, the armour of BTR-60PB proved inadequate.[3][19]

A rusting BTR-60PB abandoned in the center of a village in Afghanistan's Oruzgan province.

Soviet War in Afghanistan

The BTR-60PB was used in large numbers during the initial part of the Soviet War in Afghanistan. This was because the units that were originally used for this operation weren't the top priority of the Soviet military, which prioritized the units stationed in East Germany. The same design flaws were present during this conflict and the vehicle became even more vulnerable due to the kind of fighting that took place in Afghanistan. The GAZ-40P gasoline engines experienced frequent power losses and overheating due to the tropical highland climate for which they were not well suited. Also, the BTR-60PB's turret could not elevate its armament high enough to fire at the Mujahideen attacking from high ground. Like during the Sino-Soviet border conflict, many BTR-60PBs fell victim to RPGs. Because of those drawbacks, the BTR-60PBs were replaced by BTR-70s as soon as possible to a point where only the BTR-60 command variants were used.[19]

Other operational use

Soviet BTR-60s, BTR-70s and BTR-80s were used for dispersing the demonstrations in Tbilisi in 1989 and stopping the fighting on the border between Uzbek SSR and Kirghiz SSR. They were also used in Nagorno-Karabakh and South Ossetia. In 1990, they were used in Vilnius to suppress the Lithuanian independence movements.[20]

Soviet Union successor states

In 1991, the BTR-60s of the Soviet Army was passed on to the armies of the successor states and thus used in many regional conflicts. 27 BTR-60PBs[20] that were inherited by Moldavia were used by its army during the War of Transnistria. A number of BTR-60s were used by the Georgian army during the 1992–1993 War in Abkhazia.[21]

As of 2007, several hundred BTR-60s remain in service with USSR successor states; these are in a process of being replaced by more modern vehicles.[22]


Russia used BTR-60s during the First Chechen War, but since the mid-1990s BTR-60s have only been in use with the border troops.[19]

In Russian service, many BTR-60 variants have been replaced by variants of the BTR-80/K1Sh1 or have been upgraded with the engines from the BTR-80.


Moldova inherited 27 BTR-60PBs from the Soviet Union. They were used during the War of Transnistria against the Pridnestrovian Moldavian Republic.[21] Moldova also ordered 161 ex-Romanian TAB-71Ms in 1992, which were delivered between 1992 and 1995.[4] Moldova also inherited 20 BTR-70s from the Soviet Union and received 250 TAB Zimbrus and MLI-84s from Romania. In the end of March 1992, the Moldavian army was trying to sever the connection between Tiraspol and Rîbniţa. Five out of the six BTRs used during that operation were lost. On 1 April, two BTRs were used during the assault on Bender. In June, dozen of APCs were used during another assault on the city.[20]


In 1992, the separatist state of Abkhazia declared Independence from Georgia and the War in Abkhazia (1992–1993) began. Georgia sent its troops to Abkhazia to stabilize the region. The 3,000 man force was poorly equipped with military vehicles, having only five T-55 main battle tanks, a few BMP-2 infantry fighting vehicles, three BTR-60/70 armoured personnel carriers and a small number of BM-21 Grad MRLs. As the war continued, the Georgian forces in Abkhazia were strengthened. The rebels had no AFVs of their own, but captured some heavy equipment from the Georgians.[20]

BTR-60PB of the Armenian police enters Shahumyan Square near the French Embassy in Yerevan, Armenia on 1:30 pm, 1 March 2008.

A BTR-60PB of the Armenian police was used on 1 March 2008 during the Armenian presidential election protests in Yerevan. It was sent to counter the protest at the Shahumyan Square near the French Embassy, where it arrived at 1:30 pm. Eventually, the unarmed and peaceful demonstrators surrounded the APC, mounted it, and forced its crew to leave the square.


During the ongoing War in Donbass, Ukrainian Military used several BTR-60 variants. The Ukrainian National Guard, have deployed BTR-60PB's for counter-insurgency operations in Eastern Ukraine.[23]

Foreign service

BTR-60s in Grenada

BTR-60 APCs were employed widely both by the Soviet Army and by more than 30 export customers.[11] Operators of the BTR-60 have included Afghanistan, Algeria, Angola, Bhutan, Botswana, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Congo, Cuba, Djibouti, East Germany, Ethiopia, Finland, Grenada, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Hungary, India, Iran, Iraq, Laos, Libya, Mali, Mongolia, Mexico, Morocco, Mozambique, Nicaragua, North Korea, Romania, Soviet Union, Syria, Uganda, Vietnam, Yugoslavia, Yemen, and Zambia, as well as many of the successor states of the Soviet Union.[24] The most widely spread model is the BTR-60PB.

Although the BTR-60 still remains in service with many of the world's armies, it is almost never used as an APC any more. They are still being used as mobile command posts, artillery forward observation posts, airplane guidance posts, communication posts and many other specialized roles.[10]

The BTR-60 has seen action in the Yom Kippur War, the 1971 War between India and Pakistan (where it was used very effectively to punch a hole through to Jessore and subsequently Khulna), the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan (where it was used by both the Soviet and Afghan government troops), the Chechen and Yugoslav wars. It was also used by Warsaw Pact forces during the 1968 Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia.[10]


The People's Armed Forces of Liberation of Angola (FAPLA) received over seventy BTR-60PBs as military aid from the Soviet Union between 1975 and 1976, during the Angolan Civil War.[4] Throughout the late 1970s FAPLA underwent a massive expansion to counter the growing threat posed by the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA) insurgents and South African expeditionary forces operating in southern Angola. Due to the insufficient number of BTR-60s, most FAPLA motorized infantry battalions only deployed in trucks or obsolete BTR-152s.[25][26] This was rectified by the mid 1980s, due to a massive increase in Soviet materiel assistance, including the delivery of another nearly two hundred additional BTR-60PBs and some BTR-60R-145BM "Chaika" command vehicles.[4]

BTR-60PBs played an integral role in Operação Saludando Octubre, an ill-fated 1987 FAPLA offensive against UNITA forces at Jamba which sparked the Battle of Cuito Cuanavale.[27] South Africa's 61 Mechanised Battalion Group counterattacked and annihilated at least one FAPLA brigade during Operation Moduler, destroying sixty-five BTR-60s.[28] The FAPLA motorized infantrymen were initially screened by T-55 tanks; however, the tanks left them behind when they redeployed to meet the South African advance.[29] This left the BTRs hideously vulnerable, and a number were shot out by Ratel-90 armoured cars as their passengers debarked.[29]

FAPLA BTR-60PBs were also commonly used for convoy escort purposes, guarding logistical vehicles bringing fresh supplies and ammunition to the front lines.[30] In this role they were used to repel UNITA ambushes, with some success. Due to prevalence of land mines on Angolan roads, the BTRs always traveled behind a bulldozer equipped for mine clearance.[30] During the 1980s, the threat of ambush by opponents equipped with heavy weaponry of their own became more acute; on at least one occasion two BTR-60s, escorting a convoy on the road between Xangongo and Ondjiva, were destroyed at long range by South African Eland armoured cars.[31] This resulted in their supplementation with BMP-1 infantry fighting vehicles, which were more suited to suppressing hard targets.[30]


Finland's Jäger battalions operated Soviet-built BTR-60R-145BM "Chaika" vehicles. These were upgraded to BTR-60PUM standard between 1996 and 1997. In 1991, seven conscripts of the Karelia Brigade drowned when their BTR-60 sank at Taipalsaari during an amphibious exercise because the vehicle was loaded incorrectly (top-heavy) and the roof hatches opened.

The usual nicknames for BTR-60 amongst the Finnish conscripts were Petteri (a male name), after the initials BTR, and Taipalsaaren sukellusvene (Taipalsaari Submarine) after the 1991 incident.


Polish-modified BTR-60PB of the Polish Police on Tamka Street in Warsaw, Poland during European Economy Summit 2004. Notice the lack of armament.

Milicja Obywatelska (MO) operated several BTR-60PAs. They were used by ZOMO riot control units.[12] The Polish Army also received a dozen BTR-60PU-12s, which were used within the Soviet supplied 9K33 Osa SAM regiment delivered between 1980 and 1985.[4][12] On 7 December 1981, the delegation of the Polish Ministry of Internal Affairs went to the Soviet Ministry of Internal Affairs asking for equipment and supplies necessary to equip around 60,000 MO operatives and reservists enlisted because of the intensified activities against the Communist government. In response, on 17 December, the Soviet Ministry of Internal Affairs decided to transfer 25 BTR-60PBs along with 10,250,000 "Czeromucha" incapacitating chemical devices and 2,000 tonnes of gas over to its Polish counterpart.[32] These vehicles had previously been used in Afghanistan. They were later modified by adding another radio set. They were used by ZOMO.[12][33] During the martial law in Poland, the MSW automobile plant in Łódź fitted some BTRs with breakers mounted on the front of the vehicle, which were used for clearing obstacles (See Poland section in the Variants section for details).[34][35] When the Milicja Obywatelska was transformed back into Policja in 1990, all BTR-60PBs had their armament removed. This was because Policja, unlike MO, didn't have a need for weaponry with such a high muzzle velocity - such weapons were dangerous to use in urban areas. The MO needed such weaponry because it was also supposed to carry out anti-partisan operations. Policja used unarmed BTR-60PBs for security during European Economy Summit 2004 in Warsaw, as well as for clearing blockades set up by the Samoobrona political party. A few Police BTR-60PBs are kept in storage for anti-riot duty as barricade breakers.

People's Republic of China

PRC reversed engineered the BTR-60PB after capturing four examples during the Sino-Soviet border conflict on Zhenbao Island in March 1969. The program was completed in the late 1970s. However, the vehicle did not enter service in large numbers because the PRC's primitive road system and rugged terrain meant that the wheeled APC wasn't well suited for the Chinese conditions as it lacked the cross country capability of the tracked APCs in the Chinese inventory.[1] It should be noted though that, before the Sino-Soviet split, the PRC imported 100 BTR-40s and 100 BTR-152s from the USSR and manufactured copies of those vehicles; and these served with the PLA until the mid-1990s.[4][36] The experience gained through reverse-engineering the BTR-60 helped the PRC in developing other more advanced wheeled APCs later in the 1980s.

BTR-60PB captured by Israel during the Yom Kippur War. This example now resides at the IDF History Museum, Tel-Aviv.

List of Conflicts


Former USSR

Three assaulting BTR-60P APCs and supporting the entrenched infantry.
BTR-60PB, 14 November 1984.


BTR-60PB-MD1 on the Army day parade in Sofia, 6 May 2009.






Finland bought later two BTR-80s for testing out a replacement but ended up buying the domestic XA-180 series of vehicles, known later as Patria Pasi.

Former East Germany





People's Republic of China



A Soviet BTR-60PB APC (left) and a Romanian TAB-71 APC (right) on display at "King Ferdinand" National Military Museum.


Map of BTR-60 operators in blue with former operators in red

Current operators

BTR-60PB in Lithuanian army service.
A Somali National Army BTR-60 armoured personnel carrier.

Former operators

See also


  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 Czołgi Świata, Issue 41, pp 1, 2
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 Pancerni 1. Retrieved on 21 September 2011.
  3. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 Czołgi Świata, Issue 41, pp 11, 12
  4. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 SIPRI Arms Transfers Database. Retrieved on 21 September 2011.
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