compiled overview of the 20ton Hornet 'Mech, from various BattleTech novels and game sourcebooks:

The Hornet is a light 'Mech designed in the 2990s for urban reconnaissance. The earliest models were used on Davion/Capellan and Davion/Periphery border worlds to hunt down subversives before demonstrations could get out of hand. This lightly armed but (for a recon 'Mech) heavily armored machine is good for little else.

The Federated Suns' government had ordered far fewer Hornets since the advent of the Fourth Succession War. Jaime Wolf, meanwhile has always deployed the Hornet in greater numbers than did House Davion, applying his legendary tactical brilliance to finding legitimate combat uses for the Hornets in his light and recon lances.

The Hornet was one of the first 'Mechs to use recovered technology in the hope of improving its performance. The modifications were made at the high-security Kallon BattleMech Factory on the planet Talon in the Wernke system. The HNT-171 model shown has appeared in limited numbers in Federated Commonwealth units, mostly in the Sarna March, apparently as part of a field test. Wolf's Dragoons may be using a different model, but ComStar has been unable to confirm that.

The Federated Commonwealth version is far more effective than the old HNT-151. It incorporates the lighter endo steel construction, combined with ferro-fibrous armor and Cellular Ammunition Storage Equipment. The 171 model carries half a ton less armor than the 151, but has virtually the same amount of external protection and significantly more protection against an ammunition explosion.

The HNT-151's MainFire Point Defense anti-missile system gives the Hornet better defense against enemy missiles at the cost of an ineffectively small laser. It remains to be seen, however, whether the improved Hornet will prove more valuable on the battlefield than its predecessor.

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