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Turkish Armed Forces receives its first Altay tanks

The TSK received its first two Altay MBTs for testing from BMC during a ceremony at the manufacturer's plant at the Turkish Ministry of National Defense's Arifiye Campus on 23 April, in the presence of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. (Presidency of the Republic of Turkey)

The Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) received its first two Altay main battle tanks (MBTs) for testing from domestic manufacturer BMC.

During the acceptance ceremony on 23 April at the BMC Plant at the Turkish Ministry of National Defense's Arifiye Campus, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said, “Our new Altay tank has very different and superior capabilities than the prototype that was first revealed 10 years ago.”

The Altay tanks are armed with a 120 mm L/55 smoothbore gun and a 7.62 mm co-axial machine gun and can carry 40 120 mm rounds. The tanks feature a new active protection system, improved armour system, renewed fire-control system and vehicle-control system, and other localised subsystems.

BMC unveiled the new Altay with Aselsan's Örümcek 360° situational awareness system on 22 March. The tanks delivered are powered by South Korean engines.

Ankara and Seoul signed a letter of intent with South Korea's Doosan Group and S&T Dynamics in October 2021 to supply a limited number of engines and transmissions for testing on Altay prototypes. Initially, the powerpack for the tanks was supplied by Germany, but because of an arms embargo against Turkey, the import of automotive parts was halted. Under the Batu project, Altay tanks will be powered by 1,500 hp engines produced entirely locally by BMC Power.

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