Russia Uses 60s ‘Loaf’ Van to Ferry Troops in Ukraine as Losses Mount

The Russian military’s battlefield losses have forced it to use a 1960s-era off-road vehicle as a troop carrier.

Better known as Bukhanka or loaf in Russian, the UAZ-452 is one of the oldest in-production vehicle designs in the world, debuting in 1965.

The van is powered by a 112-horsepower engine after multiple upgrades, according to The Autopian.

It features two front doors, a single-wing door on the right side, and a double-wing door at the back.


Bukhanka’s rugged off-road features have allowed it to continue in use for over five decades.

However, the demands of the modern battlefield, particularly with the arrival of drones, have begun to reveal its flaws.

For starters, its thin steel panels are insufficient to withstand drone strikes.

Additionally, its fuel tanks are fitted under the vehicle on both the flanks, making them susceptible to being punctured or catching fire.

Not Nimble Enough 

According to The Autopian, the vehicle is not maneuverable or stable enough at high speed, making it difficult to evade fast-moving first-person view (FPV) drones.

On one occasion, a Ukrainian FPV drone was filmed chasing down a racing Russian Bukhanka as it veered frantically side to side to avoid the eventual strike.

More Affordable Alternative

The Bukhanka’s price tag of less than 1.5 million rubles ($16,800) explains its continued battlefield presence, as Russia has lost armored vehicles in the thousands.

Despite massive manufacturing capacity, replacing that many armored troop carriers has proven challenging.

Moscow acquired over 2,000 Desertcross 1000-3 armor-less all-terrain vehicles from a Chinese firm late last year.

The armor-less 1.5-ton vehicle was later reportedly seen ferrying troops on the frontline and being massacred by drones.

Related Articles

Back to top button