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Eurosatory 2024: Hyundai Rotem unveils upgraded K2 main battle tank

The K2EX main battle tank's most prominent upgrade is the addition of the Trophy active protection system. (Janes/Christopher Petrov)

Hyundai Rotem of South Korea unveiled an upgraded variant of the K2 main battle tank (MBT) at the Eurosatory 2024 defence exhibition held in Paris from 17 to 21 June.

The modernised K2, known as K2EX, features a new active protection system (APS) and a remotely operated weapons system (ROWS) among other system upgrades. Hoontae Oh, a research engineer on the tank research team at Hyundai Rotem, said the K2EX is set to supersede the K2 Gap Filler (GF) in production, adding that the Republic of Korea Army (RoKA) has shown interest. Hoontae referred to the tank's Trophy Heavy Vehicle (HV) APS as the ‘KAPS-2', while declining to explain this local designation further. The application of Rafael's Trophy would replace the previous soft-kill system known as KAPS (Korean Active Protection System).

The ROWS would replace the pintle mount for the commander's machine gun, although the addition will not change the type of armament available to the commander. This will provide the commander the ability to operate the 12.7 mm secondary armament from below the turret's armoured protection, in contrast to the previous arrangement. Hoontae also mentioned more minor upgrades to the K2's electrical system, likely to support the increased power demands from the Trophy APS.

For more information on Europe's changing tank market, please seeKNDS and Leonardo abandon talks on Italian Leopard 2A8 and IFV procurement .

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