Equipped with a 4.5 liter 4-cylinder Renault engine, the Renault FT, also called the FT-17, weighed more than seven tons, stood seven feet tall and roughly six feet wide. At these dimensions, the tank was able to go 4.6 miles per hour with 39 hp. While slow compared to speeds of the fastest and best modern military tanks like the French Leclerc tank, which is able to reach speeds of over 45 miles per hour, for the 1910s, this was fast for an armored vehicle. The tank had a 25-gallon fuel tank and could traverse over 30 miles on a single tank.
The main turret of the tank could be equipped with a Hotchkiss 7.92-millimeter machine gun or swapped for a Puteaux SA18 37-millimeter short-barreled gun. The small but mighty tank could only host two crew members.
The Renault FT-17 Light Tank would officially enter combat in May of 1918 and proved to be much more effective than other tanks of the time, like the Schneider CA1 and Saint-Chamond, which would regularly get stuck in the mud and often caught fire — two issues that made them much less effective in combat scenarios.