WW1 American prototypes

White 4×2 Model 1917

USA USA (1917) – Experimental vehicle – 1 prototype built

Not needed

The White 4×2 Armored Car model 1917 was built on a commercial chassis, from which it also kept the 45 hp White engine. This powerpack had 4 cylinders and a carburetor and was mounted at the front of the vehicle. The vehicle received an armored body, made from around 30 panels, made by the Van Dorn Iron Works from Cleveland, Ohio. Protection was between 3.8 and 6.5 mm (0.15-0.25 in), barely sufficient against small-arms fire and shrapnel. There were no side doors and access was granted through a single one at the rear. A small, one man revolving turret was mounted on top of the crew compartent, and it was armed with a rifle-caliber machine-gun.
The weight of the vehicle reached 3300 kg (7430 lbs) and it had double tires on its rear axle, in order to support the weight of the rear fighting compartment. The driver and co-driver, sitting side by side, could see through armored shutters and small side windows with armored flaps. Armored doors also protected the radiator and granted access to the White liquid cooled engine. The wheels were spoked and had mudguards. The crew was of three, including the machine-gunner.
The single prototype, which was assigned the number 11508, was tested at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, in 1917-18. However, there was no obvious need for an armored car at the time, and the White model 1917 was never cleared for mass production.


On War Wheels
On Aviarmor

White 1917
White 4×2 armored car model 1917.

White 4x2 model 1917 with open shutter and radiator hatch - Photo: Armored Car, A History of American Wheeled Combat Vehicles by R.P.HunnicuttThe White model 1917 with closed hatches - Photo: Armored Car, A History of American Wheeled Combat Vehicles by R.P.HunnicuttA rear view of the White model 1917 with the crew door open - Photo: Armored Car, A History of American Wheeled Combat Vehicles by R.P.HunnicuttA rare photo of a White 4x2 model 1917 with its armament in place - Photo: Armored Car, A History of American Wheeled Combat Vehicles by R.P.HunnicuttProbably the best known side profile of the prototype - Photo: Armored Car, A History of American Wheeled Combat Vehicles by R.P.Hunnicutt

White 4×2 model 1917 specifications

Weight 3.3 tons (7430 lbs)
Crew 3 (driver, machine-gunner, commander)
Propulsion White, carburetor, 4-cylinder, liquid-cooled, 45 hp power
Speed (road) 64 km/h (40 mph)
Armament 7.62 mm (0.3 in) machine-gun
Armor 3.8-6.5 mm (0.15-0.25 in)
Production 1 prototype

6 replies on “White 4×2 Model 1917”

Chile compro 2 de estos vehiculos en 1917, el de la foto es igual, pero el modelo 1 del white, que corresponderia no se parece, estan seguros que este modelo es solo un prototipo?
Sin embargo, no fue el Ejército, sino que el Cuerpo de Carabineros de Chile que, en el mismo año de su creación en 1927, incorporó y puso en servicio el primer vehículo blindado en este país. Se trataba de un camión blindado White dotado de ruedas metálicas.
Otro camión blindado similar fue incorporado poco después por la Escuela de Infantería del Ejército, donde se estudiaría su aplicación como medio de transporte táctico de fusileros, siendo en rigor éste el primer vehículo blindado militar del Ejército de Chile.

Hello, Francisco!
We have tried checking this claim, however, we could find no information regarding this vehicle being sent to Chile. Hunnicutt’s Armored Car – A History of American wheeled combat vehicles doesn’t say anything about their eventual use. No other sources have shed light into this. We have found no photos of the vehicle in Chile.
Also, the Historia de los Vehiculos Blindados de Chile book which you have sent us doesn’t seem to mention this vehicle at all.

Hello Francisco!
Again, that page only mentions a White armored car with steel wheels. There were more than one types of White armored cars. It doesn’t mean it was a model 1917 in Chile.
As for the picture, it doesn’t prove it was in Chile, and the description from the poster is again unverifiable.

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