The L6/40 was developed from a series of 4.92 ton tracked vehicles from Fiat-Ansaldo mainly for the export market. The first prototypes were completed in 1936 with one armed with twin 8mm Breda machine guns and another armed with a 37mm canon. The Italian Army ordered 283 of the L6/40′s which were delivered in 1941 and 1942. Many of the tanks were finished as Semovante L 6/47 self-propelled anti-tank guns.
The hull was of riveted construction with a minimum thickness of 6mm of armor and a maximum thickness of 30mm. The driver was seated at the front of the hull on the right; the turret was offset to the left; and the engine was located at the rear. The suspension consisted of two bogies each with two road wheels, with the drive sprocket at the front and the idler at the rear, and three track return rollers were provided.
The main armament consisted of a 20mm canon with an elevation of +20 degrees and a depression of -12 degrees. There was also a co-axially mounted 8mm Breda machine gun fitted. 296 rounds of 20mm and 1,560 rounds of 8mm ammunition were carried.
The L6/40 was designed to replace the CV 33 tankette, but it was already obsolete by the time it entered service with the Italian Army. The L6/40 was used in North Africa, Russia and Italy. A flamethrower version was developed but never entered production. A command model was also built fitted with radios and an open roof.
|Powerplant||70hp SPA 180 four cylinder inline engine|
|Weight||14,991 lbs (6,800 kg)|
|Speed||26 mph (42 kmh)|
|Range||124 miles (200 km)|
|Verticle Obstacle||2ft 4in (.7 meters)|
|Trench||5ft 7in (1.7 meters)|
|Length||12ft 5in (3.78 m)|
|Width||6ft 4in (1.92 m)|
|Height||6ft 8in (2.03m)|
|Armor||6 mm to 30 mm|
|Armament||One Breda 35 20mm cannon and One Breda 8mm co-axial machine gun|