Ukraine mechanics turn rally cars into 'combat buggies'

Ukraine mechanics turn rally cars into 'combat buggies'

Since the start of the war, Volodymyr Tarkhov says he and his friends have converted around 30 ordinary passenger cars for the military
Since the start of the war, Volodymyr Tarkhov says he and his friends have converted around 30 ordinary passenger cars for the military. Photo: Kateryna Klochko / AFP
Source: AFP

PAY ATTENTION: Click “See First” under the “Following” tab to see News on your News Feed!

At a workshop in Zaporizhzhia in southern Ukraine, mechanics are hard at work turning rally cars into vehicles that can be used to fight Russian troops on the frontline.

They change mufflers, remove sports tuning and change the interiors to create pared-down vehicles -- all under the supervision of businessman Volodymyr Tarkhov.

Before the Russian invasion, the 32-year-old produced fibreglass catamarans and kayaks.

Since the start of the war, Tarkhov said he and his friends have converted around 30 ordinary passenger cars for the military.

Now they are completing work on a "combat buggy" with the engine from a Russian Lada model used by Ukrainian rally drivers -- their second such conversion.

They took out doors, made it quieter and added a large hole at the front through which to shoot with a machine gun.

Read also

Yours sincerely: singles charmed by Japan letter-writing scheme

PAY ATTENTION: Enjoy reading our stories? Join's Telegram channel for more!

Welder Maxym Sendukov, 33, said the new muffler will make the car almost completely inaudible to the enemy.

"The goal is to make the car a little quieter to be able to pass by and stay invisible," he said.

'Comfortable for soldiers'

In the early days of the Russian invasion, the mechanics were busy building anti-tank obstacles and installing concrete blocks to protect the entry points to the city.

Their car conversion is sponsored by local businessmen who buy metal and car parts.

"In general we are just making the car comfortable for soldiers to sit in it or get out," said Yevgen, 45, whose role is to strip out the car to prepare it for welding.

He said the soldiers who have been using the other buggy the team produced have said it is "very fast and easily manoeuvrable".

Read also

Rock-around-Bangkok: Thai air guitar contestants give their all

"It is very useful in intelligence and military missions," he said.

One of the soldiers who had come to inspect the car, a 50-year-old with the callsign "Mamai", said there were not enough cars for soldiers operating on the frontline.

He said many vehicles brought to the frontline were being sourced by volunteers.

"Jeeps and minibuses are needed at the frontline to move lots of people".

For "Mamai", the advantage of the "combat buggy" was that all the passengers could shoot on all sides of the car.

"We will take the car today and take it to our positions," he said.

PAY ATTENTION: check out news exactly for YOU ➡️ find "Recommended for you" block and enjoy!

Source: AFP

AFP avatar

AFP AFP text, photo, graphic, audio or video material shall not be published, broadcast, rewritten for broadcast or publication or redistributed directly or indirectly in any medium. AFP news material may not be stored in whole or in part in a computer or otherwise except for personal and non-commercial use. AFP will not be held liable for any delays, inaccuracies, errors or omissions in any AFP news material or in transmission or delivery of all or any part thereof or for any damages whatsoever. As a newswire service, AFP does not obtain releases from subjects, individuals, groups or entities contained in its photographs, videos, graphics or quoted in its texts. Further, no clearance is obtained from the owners of any trademarks or copyrighted materials whose marks and materials are included in AFP material. Therefore you will be solely responsible for obtaining any and all necessary releases from whatever individuals and/or entities necessary for any uses of AFP material.