FV 438


Based on the chassis of the FV432 Armoured Personnel Carrier the FV 438 was designed to mount the Swingfire anti-tank missile.

It carried 2 missiles on the launcher and a further 14 inside the vehicle. All could be loaded and fired from inside the vehicle.

A separate thermal sight allowed the operator to launch the missile from up to 75m away from the vehicle by day and night.

The missile was wire-guided, requiring it to be ‘flown’ by the operator from the launch strike.

It had a range of 4,000m. Swingfire troops in armoured regiments consisted of 6 x 438s.

From the late 1970s, the 438 was transferred to the Royal Artillery, but this decision was reversed in 1982 and it saw out the remainder of its service with the RAC being withdrawn in 1985.

The Swingfire missile continues in service with the recce regiments of the RAC mounted in the striker variant of CVR(T).

Technical Specifications

Armament:16 x Swingfire missiles
1 x 7.62mm Machine-gun
Engine:Rolls Royce K60 developing 240 bhp
Max Speed:32mph
Year into service:1971

Reconnaissance Vehicles Index

Contact Information
QRH Museum
Trinity Mews
Priory Road
Warwick CV34 4NA


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