The Alvis Saracen is the six wheel drive armoured personnel carrier member of the family which includes the Saladin Armoured Car and Stalwart High Mobility Load Carrier, and has a 16mm steel armour plated hull. It was produced from 1952 until 1972 at the Alvis works in Coventry. Some are still in service with armed forces throughout the world.
Powered by a Rolls Royce B80 Series, 5,675cc, straight 8 cylinder, 160 bhp, petrol engine, the Saracen has a fluid-coupled, semi-automatic, pre-selector gearbox. The wheels are independently sprung by individual torsion bars. Maximum speed is 45 mph and fuel consumption is 5 mpg (road use). It weighs over 10 tons.
The Saracen was designed to carry 12 (commander, driver and 10 infantrymen). Armament is a .30 Browning turret-mounted machine gun, a .30 Browning anti-aircraft gun on a pintle mounting at the rear and six smoke grenade launchers. Eight firing ports are provided: three at each side and two in the rear. Over eleven different variants of the Saracen were produced, including the FV611 Ambulance and the FV610 Command Vehicle (with higher roof and no turret).