The Despot (4×4) mine-resistant ambush-protected vehicle – now in service with Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Republika Srpska in the armoured personnel carrier (APC) configuration – is being offered on the export market by its manufacturer, Tehnicki Remont Bratunac (TRB).
The vehicle was developed by TRB in co-operation with Republika Srpska, with the first production Despot delivered late in 2018 and shown for the first time during the National Day of Republika Srpska in January 2019, when it was deployed by the Ministry of the Interior’s anti-terrorist unit.
The Despot APC has a monocoque all-welded steel armour hull that is protected to the NATO STANAG 4569 Level 2 standard, but with higher levels of protection available if required by the customer, according to Gregor Waldhauser, senior consultant at TRB.
The front-mounted powerpack consists of a Mercedes-Benz OM 926 LA 7.2 litre diesel developing 322hp, coupled to an Allison 3000 SP automatic transmission with six forward and one reverse gears, two speed transfer box, and differential locks, Waldhauser said. This gives a top road speed of more than 120 km/h and, with a typical gross vehicle weight (GVW) of 14 tonnes, gives a power-to-weight ratio of 23hp/tonne.
Steering is powered on the front two wheels and the tyres are 395×85 R20 fitted with run-flat inserts. The vehicle has an independent suspension and a central tyre inflation system, said Waldhauser.
The crew compartment has 12 cubic m of internal volume and has positions for the driver, commander, gunner, and six dismounts. The vehicle is in left-hand drive configuration and both driver and commander are provided with a forward opening door. Dismounts are seated three on each side facing outwards on blast attenuating seats, and can enter and exit the vehicle via the power-operated ramp in the rear, according to Waldhauser.
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