MANILA, (BM) – According to media reports, the Brazilian company Iveco Defesa [part of Iveco Defense Vehicles], under the concluded agreement, provided the Philippine armed forces with a purchased batch of Guarani 6×6 wheeled combat vehicles, learned BulgarianMilitary.com citing Defence24.
The Philippine army purchased 28 Guarani 6 × 6 wheeled APCs for the amount of approximately USD 47 million. Iveco Defese will arms Philippines cars with an operated turret with a 12.7 mm machine gun or a 40 mm automatic grenade launcher. All internal equipment, including the E-Lynx radio station, the COMBAT NG command and control system, and the TORCH-X battlefield management system, is delivered by the Israeli company Elbit Systems.
The Guarani 6 × 6 is a Brazilian wheeled combat vehicle developed and manufactured by the Iveco Defense Vehicles’ cooperation with the Brazilian defense industry based on the Iveco SuperAV wheeled armored personnel carrier. Its crew consists of two people [the driver and the weapons operator] and can carry up to nine landing troops. The drive in the form of a 383 HP Iveco Cursor 9 diesel engine with automatic gearbox provides a base weight of approx. 16.7 tons, a maximum speed of up to 110 km / h, and a full range of 600 km. Besides, the vehicle can also fly independently at a rate of up to 10 km / h and air transport in military transport aircraft such as the C-130 Hercules or KC-390. The truck is available in many different variants that can be adapted to the customer’s requirements.
Iveco Defense designed Guarani 6×6 for the Brazilian army’s needs, which in December 2009 decided to purchase 2044 Guarani 6 × 6s for a total amount of approx. EUR 2.5 billion with a deadline for completion by 2030. The prototype was delivered to the Brazilian Army in April 2010 and was first displayed to the public at the LAAD arms exhibition in April 2011. In December 2012, the first deliveries of serial carriers of this type began, and since March 2014, it has been in line service.
Currently, about 1/4 of the ordered vehicles have been delivered, which are gradually being introduced to the line service, where they replace the existing two models of primary wheeled combat vehicles – the EE-9 Cascavel armored reconnaissance vehicles and the EE-11 Urutu wheeled armored personnel carriers.
When it comes to export customers, Lebanon had to buy this vehicle in 10 copies. In November, its interest was expressed by the MoD of Argentine, which was considered a potential purchase. These vehicles would allow the oldest combat vehicles to be replaced and withdrawn from line service by the Argentine army.
Israel is about to sell Sabrah light tanks to the Philippine land forces
As reported by the Israeli media, the Elbit Systems concern in cooperation with General Dynamics European Land Systems (GDELS) offers the Sabrah vehicle in the program of acquiring a new light tank for the Philippine land forces, as we already reported in October this year. According to unconfirmed information, he was to be pre-selected the winner of this procedure.
As part of the submitted offer, Elbit Systems is responsible for the tower system, and GDELS for the chassis in two versions – wheeled and tracked. The first one is based on the Pandur II 8 × 8 wheeled armored personnel carrier, and the second one is based on the ASCOD 2 infantry fighting vehicle. Both of these designs will compete with three other proposals.
The first was presented by the Korean Hanwha Systems concern with the K21-105 structure based on the K21 infantry fighting vehicle chassis with the Cockerill XC-8 turret system. The second, in turn, is the Turkish Otokar concern with the Arma 105 structure based on the chassis of the Arma wheeled armored personnel carrier with the Cockerill CT-CV turret system.
The third is the Indonesian company PT Pindad with the Harimau / Kaplan MT light tank developed in cooperation with the Turkish company FNSS. All these vehicles are to be armed with 105mm rifled guns.
According to unconfirmed information, the Filipino Ministry of Defense was to decide on the Israeli offer at the beginning of this year, but the COVID-19 pandemic thwarted plans to conclude the planned contract and finalize the program. The first batch of orders for the new Philippine light tanks is expected to be worth around $ 30 million.
Previously, the favorite of this tender was the Korean proposal, which offered the lowest price and launched local production. The redefinition of the Israeli offer, including the replacement of the previously offered tower system from the Italian Oto Melara HITFACT 105 with a native solution, and other additional changes were to ensure its final victory.
According to the declaration of Elbit Systems, the offered turret system for the Sabrah light tank is to be characterized by a modular structure that allows this solution to be used on any tracked or wheeled 8 × 8 platform. This solution was developed in cooperation with the Merkava “MATAK” Program Administration and the South African industry armaments.
The main armament of this turret system will be a 105mm rifled cannon (with 36 rounds in reserve, including 12 in the turret and 24 in the hull) with an autoloader and a 7.62mm tank machine gun coupled with it. The gun can be powered by a wide range of ammunition, and its effective range is 3600 m.
The equipment includes a fire control system, a laser rangefinder, and a panoramic sight in the form of an optoelectronic head. The turret drive is fully electric with stabilization in both planes. The additional tower is equipped with a set of eight smoke grenade launchers (four on each side of the tower).
Currently, the Filipino land forces do not have classic MBTs or light tanks in their service. The only exception is 14 M113A2 tracked armored personnel carriers in the fire support version. These cars were rebuilt by Elbit Systems with the installation of turret systems with the 76mm L23A1 rifled gun removed from the British FV101 Scorpion light tanks. The introduction of new light tanks into line service will allow the Philippine army to significantly increase its combat capabilities.
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