Ashok Leyland FAT 6x6 Test Drive Review
- Published On: 30 November 2018
- 6 min read
The FAT 6x6 is designed to conquer the roughest and toughest of terrains.
Recently we had a chance to drive the vehicle which is the backbone of the Indian Army’s logistical supply, the Ashok Leyland FAT 6x6. The FAT 6x6 is a field artillery tractor and the engine channels power to all 6-wheels of the vehicle. Ashok Leyland is the only company which supplies the 6x6 vehicles to the Indian Army.
Exteriors – The FAT 6x6 is humongous in size, it stretches to 8630 mm in length, 2500 mm in width and 3250 mm in height. The vehicle has halogen headlights with cage protectors, the logo sits proudly on the massive grille, there are two large windscreens which get individual wipers and the red beacon sits at the top of the vehicle. There is a winch housed inside the bumpers whose pulling capacity is 10 tonnes.
The vehicle sits on 20-inch wheels and is wrapped around by massive Michelin tyres. These tyres can be inflated or deflated by the press of a button and it takes around 30 mins to inflate the tyres. It has a diesel tank capacity of 350-litres and a pressure monitor. As it’s an Army vehicle, it gets a camouflaged paint job and the rear section of the vehicle is covered with a brownish-green soft top.
Interiors - The front cabin has space for four occupants including the driver, however, there is space for six people to sit or four people to sleep in the crew cab. The rear section of the tractor has a spare wheel along with a crane whose towing capacity is of 2.7 tonnes. The steering wheel is massive on this vehicle and the driver gets a commanding view due to the vehicle’s height and large windscreen.
The eight gauges on dashboard display a lot of information. The dashboard is filled with buttons, switches and tell-tale lights. The build quality is robust and everything has been designed and optimized according to the usage of the vehicle. Moreover, the vehicle comes equipped with an infrared rear view camera, fire and smoke detection system, AC vents and a telephone.
Performance – Powering this mammoth machine is an 8.0-litre inline 6-cylinder diesel engine which produces 360 BHP and 1400 Nm of torque. The torque from the engine is accessible from 1300 RPM and the engine redlines at 2500 RPM. The giant vehicle is capable of reaching the speed of 80 km/hr. The transmission is an 8-speed manual gearbox and it comes with a 2-speed AWD system. Moreover, shifting gears on the FAT 6x6 takes a lot of efforts and the gearbox isn’t smooth.
Driving Dynamics – The FAT 6x6 gets a Parabolic suspension at the front and a Bogie unit at the rear. There are three axles and each gets a differential lock on it. The ride is smooth but the handling isn’t great. It gets a power assisted hydraulic steering and turning the vehicle requires a lot of effort. The pneumatic brakes of the FAT 6x6 are great and provide good anchorage to the vehicle.
Safety and After Sales Service – The Ashok Leyland FAT 6x6 comes with a bead lock in the tyres, this avoids the tyres from slipping off in case of a puncture. The vehicle comes equipped with a tyre pressure monitoring system (TPMS) and an optional emergency steering system. The vehicle is only for sale to the Indian Military and civilians cannot own this vehicle.
Verdict – The Ashok Leyland FAT 6x6 is an outstanding purpose-built vehicle. The cost of this vehicle is estimated to be around Rs. 1 crore. The vehicle is completely made in India and packs a lot of feature and technologies. The FAT 6x6 is exclusively for military troops and is tremendous value for money vehicle.