|“|| Jack of all trades.|
- Pandur IFV
The Pandur infantry fighting vehicle (IFV) is the ECA's advanced troop transport and a prime example of their combined arms tactics. The gun on its turret changes depending on the ECA infantry stationed inside, making it a highly versatile vehicle capable of dealing with a wide range of enemy threats if the right soldier is garrisoned inside.
Named after a Slavonian infantry force from the 18th century, the Pandur III is the third generation of the eponymous family of wheeled combat vehicles in service of the Austrian Bundesheer. Whilst originally designed as an armored personnel carrier, the European Continental Alliance has decided to fill this particular role with the Swedish-made Lynx Bandvagn, choosing the heavy weapons carrier variant of the highly versatile Pandur as its standard infantry fighting vehicle instead.
As such, the ECA Pandur omits its troop carrying capabilities in favor of additional storage space for a variety of heavy weapons that can be installed on the turret and operated by a dedicated specialist infantryman ordered into the vehicle. These include a 20mm auto-cannon, a self-loading, four-barreled set of Panzerfausts, a rapid-firing grenade machine gun, an extendable repair arm, medical supplies, a mortar, an anti-material cannon and a short-barreled canister gun.
Its steel-encased polymer armor protects the Pandur against small arms fire and keeps it light enough to fully utilize the mobility of its six wheels, making it a useful addition to any mechanized force. Oddly enough for a vehicle originating from a landlocked country, the Pandur is also equipped with inflatable rubber skirts to traverse stretches of water, such as the Danube river that runs through northern Austria.
The Pandur is one of the most versatile vehicles in the whole game thanks to its ability to be equipped with various types of weapons and equipment which allow it to deal with all kinds of situations. While a lone Pandur can be quite vulnerable, a group of several Pandurs equipped with several types of weapons can deal with pretty much all situations.
The 20 mm cannon has the ability to pick off small groups of infantry as well as damaging light vehicles. It is quite slow firing compared to other weapons of its type such as the Quad Cannon or Gatling Tank, but deals significantly more damage.
The 40 mm grenade launcher is a rapid-firing, grenade machine gun. It has the ability to lay down a frightening amount of firepower against both vehicles and infantry. The standard firing mode is decent against light and medium vehicles partially due to its high rate of fire. But it is quite against infantry. The airburst-firing mode fire a special type of rubber-coated grenade that bounces on the ground before exploding in the air, damaging all infantry in the open. This firing mode is devastating against large groups of infantry and one Pandur using this firing mode can destroy large infantry groups, such as the Volunteer Squad, in mere seconds. It is also an excellent weapon to suppress GLA dushka nests and Stinger sites, often killing its crew before they manage to fire a second salvo. However, the airburst mode is useless against even the lightest vehicles.
As well as being well armed, Pandurs are also highly mobile, for they have great speed and have the ability to travel across water. This thus makes Pandurs excellent vehicles to perform rapid hit-and-runs against the enemy where they least expect it.
Pandurs are vulnerable to any aircraft, though, so any AA units is indispensable to defend them. They are also vulnerable to artillery, but they are fast enough to avoid shells (provided that Commanders are paying close attention to them).
One of the most useful yet underrated unit of the ECA save for engi-pandurs and grenade-pandurs, there are more uses for Pandurs than what meets the eye. One idea is you could end an eternity of hurt from water-bound Golem Tanks by deploying them before they get to shore. The Pandur's ability to use its main weapon while at sea renders it a deadly enemy to Golems planning to take a little cruise.
For guarding Pandurs (particularly when they are in formation), a group of mobile AA vehicles should be incorporated in those formation. ECA Gepards and Wotan Arrays are the excellent choice for those who doesn't want to use captured vehicles.
- Because of the way the vehicle is coded, it is immune to hijackers and it will immediately be destroyed if the pilot is killed by any means.