Type 97 Te Ke Tankette
The Imperial Japanese Army (IJA) Type 97 Light Armored Car Te-Ke / 九七式軽装甲車 テケ / Kyū-nana-shiki kei sōkōsha Teke was a tankette that was designed as a replacement for the earlier Type 94 Te Ke. The tracks on each side had a large sprocket at the front with two pairs of bogie road wheels and a rear drive wheel at the rear of the tank. Production began in 1937 and was the most widely produced Japanese Army tankette.
This tank was armed with either a 7.7mm Type 97 machine gun or a 37mm cannon. The Type 97 armed with cannon used the Type 94 37mm gun with a barrel length of 1.3585 m (L36.7) ,EL angle of fire of -15 to +20 degrees, AZ angle of fire of 20 degrees and a muzzle velocity of 600 m/s that was capable of penetration of 45mm at 300m. The main gun was operated and loaded by the commander.
In combat, Type 97s were assigned to support infantry and used to tow a trailer with supplies. Crews found the hull was too small to accommodate the crew and the armament was ineffective. Lightly armored, even small arms fire could penetrate the thickest hull armor. By 1943, most Type 97s were withdrawn from combat because they were deemed to be ineffective but some remained in use until the surrender of Japan in September 1945.
Type 98 So Da
A variant of the Type 97 Te-Ke was the Type 98 So-Da esigned as ammunition carrier and was also used as a troop carrier.
Crew Two (commander/loader/gunner and driver)
Weight 4.5 Tons
Engine 4 cylinder air cooled Mitsubishi
Armament 7.7mm Type 97 machine gun or 37mm gun Type 94 (1936) in the turret