Vehicle Types

Shadowrun defines vehicles by their Chassis Type. Some chassis types are exclusively availible to drones. The Chassis Types are grouped in the following categories (see Rig3 104):

For actual vehicle descriptions and game statistics see Equipment: Vehicles.

Shadowrun Vehicle Skills that cover the vehicle types below are: Bike, Car, Fixed-Wing Aircraft, Hovercraft, Lighter-than-Air Aircraft, Motorboat, Rotor Aircraft, Sailboat, Ship, Submarine, Vectored-Thrust Aircraft from the core rules (SR3 88), as well as Mechanical Arm Operation, Semiballistic, Suborbital, Tracks and Walkers from the Rigger handbook (Rig3 24).


  • All-Terrain Vehicles (ATVs): All-terrain vehicles are three- or four-wheeled versions of the off-road bike. ATVs are easier to handle off-road, but they sacrifice on-road Handling rating as well as speed.
  • Choppers: Choppers are heavy motorcycles designed primarily for long-distance cruising.
  • Off-Road Bikes: Off-road bikes are designed for traversing rough terrain and have better-than-standard off-road Handling ratings (usually at the expense of on-road Handlung).
  • Racing Bikes: Racing bikes are designed to achieve and sustain high speeds, primarily on-road.
  • Scooters: Scooters are short-range city commuter cehicles. They do not offer spectacular performance, but they are fairly cheap.


  • Skiffs: A skiff is a small boat under six meters long.
  • Speedboats: Speedboats are high-speed boats, such as the cigarette racing boat. Some not-so-powerful versions also exist for day tripping. Speedboats generally measure between seven and ten meters long.
  • Sport Cruisers: Sport cruisers are medium-siued boats, generally used as pleasure boats by the wealthy. Sport cruisers generally measure between ten and twenty meters long.
  • Water Scooters: Water scooters, sometimes called jet skis, ate waterborne versions of motorcycles. They are exclusively motor-powered for design purposes.
  • Yachts: Yachts are large boats with an overall length greater than twenty meters, but less than fourty meters. Most of them are the toys of the very well-to-do. All yachts come with basic living amenities.


  • Armored Personnel Carriers (APCs): APCs are armored ground vehicles designed for carrying troops into combat. They weight between fifteen and thirty metric tons. Though often mistaken for tanks, APCs are vulnerable to anti-vehicle missiles and can carry the smallest of heavy weapons only. APCs may use either tracks or wheels for propulsion.
  • Caterpillars: The term 'caterpillar' refers to heavy tracked vehicles used in civilian applications. The most notable of these is the construction field, where this type of chassis serves as the foundations for various vehicles, from bulldozers to cranes.
  • Crawlers (Drone): Crawlers are unmanned drones designed for use with remote-control decks. Crawlers may move via tracks or wheels; few differences exist between the two types. All crawlers (and all drone chassis) come with a remote-control interface and rigger adaption as standard options. Crawler chassis come in four sizes: micro (Body 0), small (Body 1), medium (Body 2), and large (Body 3). Micro-sized crawlers range in size between anywhere from ten to twentyfive centimeters long and are light enough to be carried in the palm of a person's hand. Small crawlers may be as small as a toaster or as large as a large dog. Medium crawlers are roughly comparable in size to a motorcycle or a human lying prone. To create crawlers larger than medium-scale, use one of the standard car chassis.
  • Industrial Movers: Industrial movers represent a wide variety of heavy-lifting vehicles used indoors, including forklifts, cherry-pickers, and street and ice-cleaners. Typically, they run on electric or methane engines to eliminate emissions of hazardous fumes. These vehicles possess tremendous lifting capability, though often at the cost of speed and operational duration.
  • Limousines: Limousines are extended-length luxury cars, designed to carry extra passengers, amenities and accessories.
  • Recreational Vehicles (RVs): All-terrain recreational vehicles weigh in between 1.25 and 2.5 metric tons and are designed for long-range travel. RVs come equipped with living and sleeping amenities as a standard option.
  • Sand Buggies: Sand buggies are light, open-air four-wheeled vehicles designed for off-road use. Although similar to All-terrain vehicles in structure and design, sand buggies can carry more passengers (up to four) and more cargo. Most sand buggies use open tube-frame chassis, but they often carry attachable canvas or plastic overhead and side panels for protection against the elements.
  • Sedans: Sendans are medium-sized four-seat cars. This subtype includes everything from familiy to luxury models.
  • Sports Car: These two-seat cars are designed for moving at extremely high speed.
  • Sport Utility Vehicles (SUVs): Sport Utility Vehicles include light trucks that weigh less than 1.25 metric tons, such as pickups, 4WDs, jeeps and Hummers.
  • Subcompacts: Subcompacts are small, inexpensive cars designed primarily for commuting within a city. Most are one- or two-seaters and have very little cargo space.
  • Tractors: Tractors usually weigh as much as heavy transports but have no internal cargo capacity. Tractors are designed to pull one or more trailers and can haul as much as eighteen metric tons of cargo.
  • Transports: Medium transports are freight-haulers that weigh between 2.5 and 5 metric tons. Heavy transports are heavy-duty freight trucks that weigh in at 5 to 10 metric tons.
  • Vans: Vans are trucks that weigh between 1.25 and 2.5 metric tons.

Fixed-Wing Aircraft

  • Airliners: An airliner is a heavy-duty aircraft, such as those operated by major air carriers. Airliners are capable od transcontinental or even intercontinental flight and rely on two, three, four or occasionally five heavy propeller or turbofan engines.
  • Fixed-Wing Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) (Drone): UAVs are drone aircraft. Fixed-wing UAVs come in three sizes: small (Body 1), medium (Body 2), and large (Body 3). Small fixed-wing UAVs are approximately the size of toy model aircraft. Medium sizes UAVs have fuselage comparable in size to a dwarf or a small human. Large UAVs have fuselage as big as trolls, and some of the larger ones can actually carry metahumans. To create larger drones than these airframes allow, use either the ultralight or single-engine aircraft chassis.
  • High-Speed Commercial Transports (HSCTs): High-speed commercial transports are hypersonic aircraft capable of crossing the Atlantic or Pacific Ocean in a matter of hours. Because of the devastatic sonic boom caused by hypersonic travel, HSCT flight is normally confined to airspace over the oceans or largely unpopulated areas. The Concorde is an early predecessor of the HSCT. An HSCT chassis has a Standard Landing/Take-off Profile and cannot take the improves Takeoff/Landing Profile design option.
  • Jet Fighters: Jet fighters are supersonic combat aircraft controlled by one or two pilots. Jet fighters have a lifting capability of several tons, most of which is used for carrying heavy bombs and long-range missiles. Jet fighters never carry more than the lightest armor, to preserve their maneuverability and ordnance-carrying capacity.
  • Single-Engine Aircraft: A sinfle-engine aircraft chassis is a small, multi-passenger aircraft that possesses only one propulsion engine (either propeller or turbine).
  • Twin-Engine Aircraft: A twin-engine chassis is a middleweight air frame that normally requires two propulsion engines, either propeller or turbine. Examples include reginal or commuter aircraft that fly between small airports and larger ones serving majir airline companies.
  • Ultralights: An ultralight is a very small, single-pilot aircraft. Although the term originally referred to open-air hang gliders powered by internal-combustion engines, any single-passenger aircraft, regardless of structure, is considered an ultralight for design purpose.


  • Light Hovercraft: Light hovercraft are roughly comparable in size to pickups or sport utilitiy vehicles and are used primarily as recreation or pleasure craft.
  • Medium Hovercraft: Medium hovercraft are approximately as large as vans or lightweight medium transports. Medium hovercraft are used as amphibious recreation vehicles, light cargo and passenger carriers, and even security vehicles.
  • Heavy Hovercraft: Heavy hovercraft are comparable in size to medium or heavy transports and can haul large numbers of passengers or large freight loads. The CAS Marine Corps uses armored heavy hovercraft as rapid-assault and screening vehicles during amphibious combat operations.
  • Skimmers (Drones): Skimmers are drone hovercraft. They come in two sizes: small (Body 1) and medium (Body 2), which are comparable in size to small and medium crawlers.

Rotor Craft

  • Attack Helicopters: Attack helicopters are one- or two-passenger high-performance combat helicopters. Most militaries use attack helicopters as missile carriers for close-air support or longer range deep-strike missions. Consequently, they tend to be lightly armored. Because they are so specialized, attack helicopters are rarely used for any other role.
  • Autogyros: Autogyros are single-passenger ultra-light helicopters. Though they lack significant Body and Armor Ratings and engine performance, they are very versatile.
  • Cargo Helicopters: Cargo helicopters are large helicopters designed for carrying heavy loads.
  • Rotary Wing UAVs (Drone): Rotary wing UAVs are generally (but not always) drone helicopters. They come in three sizes: micro (Body 0), small (Body 1), and medium (Body 2). Micro-scale rotary UAVs measure between 20 and 40 centimeters long (many can even be held in the palm of one's hand). Small and medium versions are equal in size to fixed-wing UAVs. To create drones larger than medium scale, use the autogyro template. The rotary wing UAV chassis also includes several handheld models that generate lift by flapping their wings, in much the same way that birds do. Those types of 'hummingbird drones' are limited only to micro-sized chassis, as the power requirements are too inefficient for Body 1 or larger drones.
  • Tilt-Wing Airplanes: Tilt-wing airplanes are fixed-wing propeller aircraft that can alter the incidence of their wings and perform vertical take-offs and landings. These craft have traveling ranges comparable to fixed-wing aircraft, yet they can hover and make vertical landings like helicopters. Almost all tilt-wing airplanes are propeller-driven.
  • Tilt-Wing UAVs (Drone): Tilt-wing UAVs are drone tilt-wing aircraft. They come in two sizes, small and medium, which correspond in size to small and medium fixed-wing UAVs.
  • Utility Helicopters: Utility helicopters are medium-sized multipurpose helicopters.


  • Aircraft Carriers: Aircraft carriers transport and launch aircraft from their decks. Aircraft carriers are available in three sizes: light, medium, and heavy. Light carriers, which have a tonnage between 10 and 25 metric thousand tons, are typically designed to carry helicopters or other speciality aircraft and perform specialized missions. Medium carriers, usually weighing between 40 to 50 thousand metric tons, are flexible enough to handle several different roles and are generally employed by most nations (including Great Britain, Russia, France, Canton Confederation). Heavy carriers, which range from 75 to 100 thousand metric tons, carry many more aircraft. Currently only Imperial Japan and the UCAS employ heavy carriers, as no other nation possesses the money and vested interest required to maintain such behemoths.
  • Corvettes: Corvettes are the heavier cousins of patrol vessels and are designed specifically for naval combat. Although their small size makes them vulnerable to anti-ship weapons, their speed and shallow drafts gives them a slight adcantage over line warships in constricted waters. Corvettes can carry some of the lighter anti-ship weapons. They are the mainstrays of brown-water navies (navies structured for defending a local region of water), such as the Aztlan and CAS navies.
  • Cruisers: A cruiser is a medium-weight warship designed for general naval combat. Since World War II, cruisers have been gradually replacing heavier capital warships such as dreadnoughts and battleships. Currently, no active battleships remain on duty, most having been melted down for scrap or sold as museum pieces.
  • Destroyers: A destroyer is a light warship, though slightly heavier than frigates, and is designed as a surface combatant specializing in one aspect of naval combat (either air-defense, surface warfare, or anti-submarine warfare).
  • Freighters: Freighters are giant trans-oceanic cargo ships and include specialized designs such as bulk freighters, container ships, roll-on/roll-off ships, lighter aboard ships freighters and most oil tankers.
  • Frigates: A frigate is defined as a light warship designed primarily for escort duty or anti-submarine warfare.
  • Harbor Tugs: A habor tug is a heavy duty utility boat. They are generally used for pushing or pulling large barges in and out of a harbor.
  • Merchantmen: Merchantmen are middleweight general commercial hulls, up to 125 meters long and carrying up to 100,000 metric tons. Merchantmen are used to carry a wide variety of items, including passengers, vehicles, and of course, cargo.
  • Patrol Vessels: Patrol vessels are vessels designed for coastal operations (both combat and non-combat). Most cutters are unarmed and generally perform non-combat operations, such as harbor maintenance or boater assistance. Armed variants generally pack medium or heavy machine guns, sometimes complemented with a few assault cannons. Patrol vessels are the mainstay of many coastal defense forces, such as the UCAS Coast Guard, Salish-Sidhe Coast Patrol and the Tír Tairngire Border Patrol.
  • Trawlers: A trawler is a small ship, generally used as a fishing vessel. Some trawlers serve as ferries for cities built around a large bay (like Hong Kong or Vladivostock). It is also rumored that certain national and corporate intelligence services use trawlers for electronic surveillance.


  • Attack Submarines: Attack submarines are middleweight war subs and are designed for use against sub-surface, surface and (occasionally) aerial targets.
  • Bathyscaphs: A bathyscaph is a deep-sea research and exploration submarine designed for deep dives into the darkest reaches of the oceans.
  • Boomer: Boomers are the largest type of underwater warships. Their heavy size makes them relatively slow, so they depend on stealth rather than speed or armor for survivability. The most common submarines of this type (designated as SSBN) are used to carry strategic ballistic missiles for the nuclear powers. Another common class (designated as SSGN) carries lighter anti-ship and land-attack missiles.
  • Commercial Submarines: Commercial subs are designated for transporting passengers and cargo. They come in three sizes: light (Hull 3), medium (Hull 5), and heavy (Hull 7).
  • Minisubs: A minisub is a submarine with a displacement of less than 100 metric tons (and so far is treated as a regular vehicle, not a ship-sized vehicle). Minisubs come in three sizes: light (Body 4), medium (Body 6), and heavy (Body 9). Light minisubs are barely large enough for one or two passengers. Medium minisubs can accomodate about a half dozen people and are usually used on underwater construction jobs. Heavy minisubs serve primarily as short-range underwater subs from the surface to underwater subs or aquacologies.
  • Patrol Submarines: A patrol sub is a small submarine designed to patrol a sub-oceanic region of water (such as a major sea). Because of their small size, patrol subs are not nuclear powered.
  • Sea Sleds (Drone): A sea sled is an unmanned submarine, used primarily for undersea surveying and exploration. This chassis can also be used as an underwater 'scooter', allowing divers to piggyback on the sled, thus extending their diving ranges. Sea sleds come in three sizes: small (Body 1), medium (Body 2), and large (Body 3).

Vectored-Thrust Craft

  • Jump-Jet Fighters: Jump-jet fighters are similar to standard fixed-wing jet fighters but have additional vertical vents for vertical landings and take-offs and hovering.
  • Thunderbirds: Thunderbirds have stubby auxillary wings and rely almost entirely on jet propulsion to provide lift and thrust. Without adequate power, t-birds become flying (or more precisely, falling) bricks. Consequently, thunderbirds generally have short ranges and tremendous fuel requirements. In most militaries, thunderbirds are used for short-range close air support, as well as armor support in terrain not suited to tank maneuvers. In these applications, t-birds are heavily armored and fitted with machine guns and assault cannons in place of rockets and missiles.
  • Vectored-Thrust UAVs (Drone): Vectored-thrust UAVs are drone versions of t-birds and jump-jet aircraft. They come in three sizes: small (Body 1), medium (Body 2), and large (Body 3). These sizes correspond to the sizes of fixed-wing UAVs. Vectored-thrust UAVs start with the VTOL take-off profile, but they may be downgraded to VSTOL, which reduces the chassis cost by half. Vestored-thrust UAV's with a VSTOL profile have a stall speed equal to (30 x Body) meters per turn and follow the special rules for LAVs (see Rig3 69).

Special Vehicles

  • Anthroforms (Drone): Anthroforms are specialized walker drones with metahuman-shaped bodies. They can perform nearly any physical task a metahuman can, and they can do so with greater strength, speed and agility than even a cybered metahuman. However, anthroforms lack the intelligence, breadth of experience and talent for creative adaption that metahumanity possesses, which is why anthroforms have not replaced metahuman workers except in high-risk hazard areas, such as nuclear power plants and ultra-heavy industrial work areas. Anthroforms are available in two sizes, medium (Body 2), and large (Body 3).
  • Barges: A barge is the waterborne version of a trailer, but on a larger scale.
  • Locomotives: A locomotive is a vehicle that travels on a fixed path and includes both standard railroads and monorails. Locomotives come in five types: streetcar, switchers, express, bullet, and bulk. Streetcars are trains used for city transportation (such as subways), either singly or in a train. Switchers are (relatively) small locomotives used for attaching and detaching cars in a trail yard, as well as (to a limited degree) local transportation. Express locomotives are moderately fast engines used primarily for coach travel. Bullet locomotives are high-speed engines and include such notables as the French TGV, German ICE and TransRapid Maglev, and Japanese bullet trains. Bulk locomotives are slow but possess extraordinary pulling power; typically, these are used to pull freight trains.
  • Mini-Blimps (Drone): Mini-blimps are miniature zeppelins. Their capability for hovering indefinitely makes them especially well-suited for reconnaissance and wide-area surveillance.
  • Rail Cars: Rail cars are non-powered rail vehicles, pulled by locomotives. They are available in three basic types: short passenger cars, long passenger cars, and freight cars.
  • Semiballistics: A semiballistic is a rocket-like vehicle that travels in a parabolic arc. I takes off from an airport like a normal aircraft, but once it gets a safe distance away, it launches itself vertically and actually leaves the atmosphere temporarily. At its peak, it has expended all its fuel, and gravity brings it in the rest of the way. The best way to picture a semiballistic is to think of it as an ICBM that carries passengers instead of nuclear warheads. Semiballistics have a Standard Takeoff Profile, but they require a special type of runway to land. Semiballistics must take the Chemical Rocket power plant.
  • Suborbitals: A suborbital is a rocket-boosted fixed-wing aircraft. The main difference between suborbitals and full orbital launchers is that suborbitals lack the fuel capacity to make an unassisted launch into space. The Space Shuttle is a predecessor of 2060-era suborbitals. Suborbitals have a Standard Landing/Takeoff Profile. They may not take the Improved Takeoff/Landing Profile design option. Suborbitals must take the Chemical Rocket power plant.
  • Trailer: A trailer is a vehicle that is incapable of self motion. Trailers are commonly wheeled, though some may be tracked. There are also a few drone models that are mounted on tripods and perform area surveillance or security. Trailers do not take a power plant.
  • Walkers (Drone): Walkers are drones that use robotic legs for propulsion (legs can provide a distinct advantage over wheels or tracks when crossing difficult terrain). Walkers come in five sizes: micro (Body 0), small (Body 1), medium (Body 2), large (Body 3), and extra-large (Body 4). They correspond to crawler sizes. The extra-large walker is roughly equivalent to a sedan-sized car.
  • Zeppelins: More commonly known as 'blimps', zeppelins are rigid-structure, lighter-than-air (LTA) vehicles that use helium to provide lift. Zeppelins are huge but fairly easy to bring down. Jet propeller engines propel most zeppelin though some have been outfitted with turbojets.
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