Motor War Car was the first armored car ever built. It was designed in 1902 by F.R. Simms and a single prototype was built by Vickers & Maxim. The vehicle was an improvement over Simms' earlier design known as "Motor Scout" which was the first armed (but not armored) vehicle powered by a gasoline engine.

The vehicle had Vickers armor 6 mm thick and was powered by a 16 hp Daimler engine giving it a maximum speed of around 9 miles per hour (14.5 km/h). The armament, consisting of two Maxim guns, was carried in two turrets with 360° traverse. Some sources also mention a single QF 1 pounder pom-pom.[1][2]

It had a crew of four. Simms' Motor War Car was presented at the Crystal Palace, London, in April 1902.[3]

Another armoured car of the period was the French Charron-Girardot-Voigt 1902, presented at the Salon de l'Automobile et du cycle in Brussels, on 8 March 1902.[4]


  • Armoured Fighting Vehicules of the World Volume I, Cannon Books, 1998, ISBN 1899695028

External links[]

  1. Macksey, Kenneth (1980). The Guinness Book of Tank Facts and Feats. Guinness Superlatives Limited. pp. 256. 
  2. Tucker, Spencer (1999). The European Powers in the First World War. Routledge. pp. 816. 
  3. Armoured Fighting Vehicules of the World, Duncan, p.3
  4. Gougaud, p.11, L'Aube de la Gloire, Les Autos-Mitrailleuses et les Chars Français pendant la Grande Guerre, 1987, Musée des Blindés, ISBN 2904255028.