Hobby Master 1-72 Ground Power
HG5206 A34 Comet British Cruiser Tank South African Defense Force, 1960s
The British Cruiser Tank A34 “Comet” was designed to correct some of the problems with
the Cromwell Tank as well as providing better anti-tank capability for their squadrons. The
Comet was late entering WWII so it wasn’t involved in any major battles but with its new
main gun it could take on Germany’s large tanks. After WWII the Comet saw combat in
Korea and remained in the British inventory until 1958. The Comet was sold to 5 other
countries and some even operated until the 1970s.
The Comet tank went into battle during WWII and in Korea where it sometimes fought next
to what would be its replacement, the Centurion. The Centurion was based on the Comet
design but was much heavier. The Comet continued to be used by British forces until the
late 1950s and then began to be offered for sale to other countries. In 1954 South Africa
began to acquire 26 Comet Tanks and over time converted some into armored battlefield
maintenance and repair vehicles. Several Comets can be found in South African museums.
Specifications for the A34 Comet
Type – Cruiser
Manufacturer – Leyland Motors Ltd.
In British Service – 1944 - 1958
Other Operators – Cuba, Finland, Ireland, South Africa and Myanmar (Burma)
Crew - 5 (Commander, gunner, loader, driver, co-driver)
Length Including Gun Barrel – 25.13 ft. (7.66 m)
Height – 8.79 ft. (2.68 m)
Width – 10.1 ft (3.04 m)
Weight – 68,343 lb. ( 31,000 kg)
Engine – 1 X Rolls-Royce Meteor Mk. III V-12 600 hp.
Fuel Capacity – Approximately 120 Imperial gallons
Maximum Speed – 32 mph (51.5 km/h)
Maximum Range – 123 miles (198 km)
Main Gun – 1 X 77 mm HV Mk. II L/49 with 61 rounds
1 X 7.92 mm BESA general purpose machine gun in coaxial mount
1 X 7.92 mm BESA general purpose machine gun in bow mount
7.92 mm 5,175 rounds