The Type 92 Tankette was built for the Japanese cavalry corps. It manufactured by the Ishikawajima Motorcar Manufacturing Company between 1932 and 1939. Just under 13 feet long it was fitted with a turret and had a crew of three.  It was powered by an Ishikawajima Inline 6-cylinder air-cooled petrol engine built under licence from Mitsubishi. The Type 92 was armed with two Type 91 0.25 inch machine-guns, one in the turret and one in the hull.

WW2 Tanks

During trials, the Type 92’s running gear presented a lot of problems and was modified several times. Changes occurred mid-production, which ran for nearly eight years, from 1932 to 1939. Only 167 tankettes were built, The later models were produced with new running gear with featured two bogies and bigger road wheels. Other changes included the changes to the vision slits and portholes. The armament was also updated, the faster Type 97, of 0.31 in was fitted.
During the course of WW2, the Type 92 received many armament updates and modifications. The engine hatch was unfolded and locked to provide an improvised platform for the gunner of an anti aircraft gun that was fitted to the rear of the turret in later models. To improve their antitank capabilities, the Type 98 20 mm auto cannon was fitted to a few. Later, a 37 mm gun was  tried.

Classic Military Vehicle

Most cavalry units were based in Manchuria by 1935. The Type 92 tankette was first deployed with the Kwantung army and with the Chosen army in Korea. Their first successful action was the assault of Harbin, in 1932. They also took part at the battle of Rehe in 1933, during the Mongolian campaign. The Type 92 was not a great success, preforming poorly off-road, not very fast, thin armour and the gun was unable to compete with enemy  tanks.  The tankette was gradually phased out from 1937, then being replaced by the Type 97. Most of them remained in China during the course of WW2. It is thought that none survive, the last ones were destroyed by the Russians 1945.

 

 

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