Armoured Vehicles rides
Impressions of the tour:
For sheer fun and exhilaration, driving in an ex Red Army Soviet-era amphibious armoured reconnaissance vehicle takes some beating. Driving the 18’ long, 7-tonne, all-wheel drive armoured car is one of best ways to spend a morning in Moscow.
We met up with Sasha, his team and the army green BRMD-2 armoured car in woods just outside Moscow. The BRMD was built in Nizhny Novgorod between 1962 and 1989 with over 7,000 vehicles produced. The BRDM-2 became famous for being the vehicle selected to pull Brezhnev’s coffin during the funeral ceremony in the Red Square.
Our vehicle was imposing sat quietly on huge bullet proofed tyres, and when we scrambled in and grabbed our seats, was clearly designed for nimble, athletic types with rock solid bits to sit on! The warming vodka we had with our welcome breakfast helped as no one complained as we grabbed our seats.
Sasha fired up the engine and ‘quietly’ went out of the window. We took off through the woods. Navigation was obviously no problem as he steered a straight line for several hundred metres, creating his own track through what had been a quite solid bank of greenery. Back in the day, reconnaissance obviously did not mean stealthy or covert as the transmission whined, gears crashed and the bellowing V8 announced our arrival to anyone in a few square miles. Quiet it was not.
Demonstrating the vehicles amphibious capabilities, we drove through the biggest, deepest puddle of filthy Moscow water I have ever seen, into a huge morass of mud, metres deep…we scrambled out at a 45-degree angle and watched Sasha expertly get the armoured car through a hole big enough to swallow a tank.
All in all, the drive through the woods was great fun…we were thrown around quite a lot so the journey is not for the faint of heart. The Vodka was obviously only for the hard-core adults whilst both guys and girls enjoyed shooting the AK47 assault rifle (blanks). The trucks capabilities were very impressive as it drove up and down impossible angles, waded through mud and demolished everything in its way in that true indigenous ‘don’t give a damn’ style.
We all had a go driving the vehicle on a huge field once Sasha extricated us from the forest. Going flat out across the open land was exhilarating and is to be recommended!