Briefing: Armouring Asia
Instead of sourcing all their armoured fighting vehicles from overseas, as in the past, many Asian countries are now taking a home-grown approach to their requirements. Christopher F Foss takes a look at the region's indigenous armoured vehicle developments.
As a result, inventories now comprise a mixture of foreign AFVs, which have been modified to meet local operational requirements, or new vehicles that have been developed indigenously to meet the specific operational requirements of the end user. These platforms are invariably offered on the export market.
As well as replacing older vehicles with new AFVs, a number of Asian countries including Malaysia and Singapore are now acquiring new main battle tanks (MBTs) for the first time; Indonesia is also expected to procure Leopard 2A6 MBTs soon.
Additionally, Indonesia has upgraded many of its older vehicles, which include AMX-13 light tanks, Saladin armoured cars, Saracen armoured personnel carriers (APCs) and Ferret scout cars, in a bid to extend their operational lives.
In terms of indigenous developments, the Anoa 6x6 APC is currently in production with local company PT Pindad. The vehicle is very similar in appearance to the French Renault Trucks Defense Véhicule de l'Avant Blindé (VAB) 6x6 APC, which is also in service with Indonesia. The main difference between these platforms is the location of the diesel power pack: the Anoa's is located on the right side of the hull, behind the driver's and commander's position at the front of the vehicle, while the VAB's is located on the left side.253 of 1687 words
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