An M-88 is a heavy, tracked armored vehicle
used for Tank recovery, repairs and maintenance
. M-88s are also used by combat engineers
and tank mechanics
for tearing stuff up
Designed in the mid 1950's, M-88s are powered by a twin turbo, 30 liter, air cooled, V-12 diesel. Thirty feet long and twelve feet wide and weighing in at 59 tons, M-88s are akin to a Winnebago with tracks. Keeping with the Winnebago theme, M-88s offer considerably more comfortable accommodations than an M-1 tank.
Extremely low gearing limits the top speed of these behemoths to about 25 miles per hour. The low gearing and massive amounts of torque are necessary for pulling tanks out of ponds or lakes or basements or from precarious perches on bridges.
For recruiting and community good-will purposes, M-88s have made appearances at tractor pull type competitions. Much to the chagrin of the competitors, the M-88s usually wind up pulling the sled AROUND the stadium a few laps. The M-88s are usually not invited back.