The R35 was intended to replace the Renault FT as standard light infantry tank from the summer of 1936, but even by May 1940 not enough conscripts had been retrained and therefore eight battalions of the older tank had to be kept operational. On 1 September 1939, at the outbreak of war, 975 vehicles had been delivered out of 1070 produced; 765 were fielded by tank battalions in France, 49 used for drive training, 33 were in depot and 45 present in the colonies. Of a total order for 2,300 at least 1,601 had been produced until 1 June 1940 — the numbers for that month are lacking — of which 245 had been exported: to Poland (50), Turkey (100; two batches of fifty each in February and March 1940), Romania (41 from an order for 200), and Yugoslavia (54). It is likely that the tanks exported to Yugoslavia (in April 1940) are not included under the 1,601 total and that overall production was 1,685; serial numbers known to be actually used indicate a production of at least 1670 vehicles.
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