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Lesson 2

THREAT LIGHT ARMORED VEHICLES
IDENTIFICATION and CAPABILITIES

OVERVIEW

LESSON DESCRIPTION:

In this lesson, you will learn to identify various threat light armored vehicles and their capabilities.

TERMINAL LEARNING OBJECTIVE:

ACTION: Identify threat light armored vehicles, and their capabilities.
CONDITIONS: You will be given information from FM 100-2-3 (CD), Jane's Armour and Artillery 1989-1990, and the Soviet and Warsaw Pact Equipment Handbook, Revision 1.
STANDARDS: Recognize and identify threat light armored vehicles and their capabilities in accordance with FM 100-2-3 (CD), Jane's Armour and Artillery 1989-1990, and the Soviet and Warsaw Pact Equipment Handbook, Revision 1.
REFERENCES: The material contained in this lesson was derived from the following publications:

FM 100-2-3
Jane's Armour and Artillery 1989-1990
Soviet and Warsaw Pact Equipment Handbook, Revision 1.

 

INTRODUCTION

The various threat light armored vehicles have distinctive characteristics, and capabilities. This lesson will discuss the identification characteristics, and capabilities of threat light armored vehicles.

THREAT LIGHT ARMORED VEHICLES AND THEIR CAPABILITIES

Threat light armored vehicles are categorized as armored command reconnaissance vehicles (ACRVs), airborne combat vehicles (ACVs), armored personnel carriers (APCs and WAPCs), armored reconnaissance vehicles (ARVs), amphibious scout cars (ASCs), infantry combat vehicles (ICVs), infantry fighting vehicles (IFVs), mountaineers combat vehicles (MCVs), mechanized infantry combat vehicles (MICVs), multipurpose tracked vehicles (MTVs), Tank Destroyers (TDs), and battlefield surveillance radars.

1. Armored Command Reconnaissance Vehicle (ACRV).

Figure 2-1. Armored Command and Reconnaissance Vehicle (ACRV).

1V12 ACRV. 1V12 is the overall designation of four armored command reconnaissance vehicles: 1V13 (Figure 2-1), 1V14, 1V15, and 1V16. All four use the MT-LB chassis.

a. Variants.

(1) ACRV 1V13. The 1V13 has a 12.7-mm DShK anti-aircraft machine gun mounted atop the turret and a rectangular box projecting from the hull just below the turret. The ACRV 1V13 remains in the battery firing position as the battery fire direction center (FDC) relaying firing data to the SP howitzers.

(2) ACRV 1V14/1V15. The turrets on these two versions are fitted with a laser rangefinder, optical observation devices and associated fire-control equipment. They also have a rectangular box projecting from the hull just below the turret. The ACRV 1V14 and 1V15 serve as battery and battalion commanders' COPs, respectively, and do not remain in the firing position.

(3) ACRV 1V16. The 1V16 may be fitted with a 12.7-mm machine gun while eliminating the rectangular box that projects from the hull just below the turret on the other three versions. The ACRV 1V16 functions as the battalion FDC.

b. Recognition Features. The 1V12s have

  • seven road wheels with no return rollers.
  • high, box-like hulls and a steep glacis at the front.
  • flat, round turrets on the rear half.
  • straight vertical rear hulls with a single exit door.
  • three or four antennas on the top of the hull.

c. Vehicle Characteristics. The 1V12s are deployed in self-propelled (SP) howitzer battalions as fire direction centers (FDCs) and collocate with the maneuver unit commander. The 1V12s high degree of mobility, allows SP howitzers to operate closer to the forward line of troops. The 1V12s communications and fire direction equipment are mainly concerned with identifying targets of opportunity. Specifications that apply to the 1V12 are provided in the lists and paragraphs that follow.

ACRV 1V12 Measurements

Crew,5.
Weight, 11,000 kg.
Length without gun, 7.06 meters.
Width overall, 2.81 meters.
Height overall, 2.43 meters.
Ground clearance, 395 to 414 mm.
Fuel capacity, 450 liters.
Road range, 500 km.
Maximum road speed, 60 km/h.
Maximum water speed, 6 km/h.

ARCV 1V12 Armor

Hull
15 mm
Turret
20 mm.

d. Vehicle Capabilities. The ACRV 1V12 can

  • cross a 2.70-meter trench.
  • mount a 0.70-meter vertical step.
  • climb a 35-percent grade.
  • ford amphibiously.

e. Armament Characteristics. The 12.7-mm machine guns on the 1V13 and 1V16 have a maximum rate of fire of 540 to 600 rds/min.

f. Countries Served. 1V12s are in service with the Soviet Union.

2. Airborne Combat Vehicle (ACV).

Figure 2-2. BMD--Airborne Combat Vehicle (ACV).

BMD (Basic Version) (Figure 2-2). Since 1973, the BMD has replaced the airborne assault gun ASU-57 in the Soviet airborne forces, substantially increasing the firepower and maneuverability of the airborne division. Originally thought to be a light tank, the BMD may more properly be considered the airborne equivalent of the BMP infantry combat vehicle. Although, it superficially resembles the BMP, it is considerably smaller and except for the turret and main armament, is an entirely new design. Excluding the ASU-57, the BMD is the lightest tracked combat vehicle in the Soviet Army. The BMD is used in Soviet airborne divisions as an infantry combat vehicle

a. Variants. A number of BMD variants are presented in the following paragraphs:

(1) BMD-2(M-1979/1). This is a multi-purpose armored transporter, which may be used as a personnel carrier, a prime mover for support weapons, a maintenance support vehicle, or a security or route-control vehicle. It has the addition of one road wheel and one support roller per side. The BMD turret and its integral armaments have been removed and replaced by a low, flat superstructure. There are at least two firing ports per side and the bow machine guns have been retained.

(2) BMD-2KSh9(M-1979/3). This is a command vehicle that is fitted with folding clothes rail antenna masts.

(3) BMD M-1981/1. This version has a chassis from the basic version and a two-man turret mounting the same armament as the BMP-2, a 30-mm automatic cannon. It probably also mounts AT4/SPIGOT or AT-5/SPANDREL ATGMs.

(4) BMD M-1981 2S9/120-mm Self-propelled Howitzer.

(5) BMD 82-mm Mortar Carrier. This version is used only in Afghanistan.

b. Recognition Features. The BMD has

  • five road wheels and four return rollers (BMD-1).
  • six road wheels and four return rollers (BMD-2).
  • no rear exit doors.
  • a BMP-type turret set forward on the hull.
  • a driver's hatch and vision blocks centered below the main gun.
  • an additional hatch on each side of the driver.
  • a troop compartment that has an overhead armor cover and only one firing port on each side and one in the rear for personnel weapons firing.
  • a boat-shaped hull with smooth front deck and flat rear deck.
  • two waterjets in the rear.
  • a prominent cut-away in the rear deck housing.
  • a rear-mounted engine.
  • a hydropneumatic suspension with variable height capability.

c. Vehicle Characteristics. Characteristics and specifications that apply to the BMD are presented in the lists and paragraphs that follow.

BMD Measurements

Crew, 3
Passengers, 4
Combat weight, 7.5 metric tons.
Length, 5.41 meters.
Width, 2.53 meters.
Height, 100-450mm.
Ground clearance, 0.1 to 0.45 meters.
Maximum road speed, 80 km/h.
Maximum water speed, 10 km/h.
Fuel capacity, 300 liters.
Maximum road range, 320 km

BMD Armor

Hull
15 mm
Turret
23 mm.

d. Vehicle capabilities. The BMD can

  • cross a 1.60-meter trench.
  • mount a 0.80-meter vertical step.
  • climb a 32-percent grade.
  • ford amphibiously.

e. Armament Characteristics. The BMD has three layers of armament: main, secondary and supplemental.

(1) Main Armament. The BMDs main armament consists of one turret-mounted smoothbore 73-mm cannon and one turret-mounted 30-mm automatic cannon. The rate of fire in rds/min for the 73mm cannon is eight and for the 30-mm cannon is 350 to 550.

(2) Secondary Armament. The BMDs secondary armament consists of one 7.62-mm PKT coaxially-mounted machine gun. Two bow mounted machine guns are fitted on model M-1979/1. The practical rate of fire for these weapons is 250 rds/min with a basic load of 2,000 to 3,000 rounds.

(3) Supplemental. The BMDs supplemental armament consists of two ATGM missiles, a model AT-3 SAGGER and a AT-5 SPANDREL, both of which fire HEAT type warheads. The AT-3 is launched by rails and the AT-5 is launched by tubes. The ammunition load for the AT-3 is four missiles. The ammunition load for the AT-5 is not available.

f. Country Served. The BMD is in service with the Soviet Union.

3. Armored Personnel Carriers (APCs).

Figure 2-3. BTR-50P (APC).

a. BTR-50P (Figure 2-3). The BTR-50P is the basic APC version with an open troop compartment.

(1) Variants. A number of BTR-50 variants are presented in the following subparagraphs:

(a) BTR-50PA. This version has a 14.5-mm KPVT open-mounted heavy machine gun with a practical rate of fire of 150 rds/min and a load of 500 rounds. This BTR has no loading ramps.

(b) BTR-50PK. The BTR-50PK has a 12.7-mm DShK 38/46 open-mounted machine gun with a practical rate of fire of 80 to 100 rds/min and a load of 750 rounds. It also has overhead armor for the troop compartment and an NBC protection system.

(c) BTR-50PU Model 2. This is the BTR command version.

(d) MTP Technical Support Vehicle. This version has a raised workshop compartment.

(e) MTK aka UR-67. This is a mine-clearing version.

(2) Recognition Features. The BTR-50P has

  • six road wheels and no return rollers.
  • a boat-type hull with vertical sides.
  • a lowered rear deck.
  • two waterjets and covers at the rear.
  • a tower-type cupola on the left front.
  • a drivers hatch in the front center.
  • the same chassis as the PT-76.

(3) Vehicle Characteristics. Specifications that apply to the BTR-50P are provided in the lists and paragraphs that follow.

BTR-50P Measurements

Crew, 2.
Passengers, 20.
Combat weight, 14.2 metric tons.
Length,7.32 meters.
Width, 3.14 meters.
Height,1.85 meters.
Ground clearance, 0.33 meters.
Maximum road speed, 45 km/h.
Maximum water speed, 10 km/h.
Fuel capacity, 400 liters.
Maximum road range, 240 km.

BTR-50P Armor

Hull
10 mm.
Turret
N/A.

(4) Vehicle Capabilities. The BTR-50P can

  • cross a 2.80-meter trench.
  • mount a 1.10-meter vertical step.
  • climb a 38-percent grade.
  • ford amphibiously.

(5) Armament Characteristics. The BTR-50P has one layer of armament: a 12.7-mm open-mounted machine gun with a practical rate of fire of 80 to 100 rds/min and a load of 750 rounds.

(6) Country Served. The BTR-50P is in service with the following countries.

Afghanistan
Albania
Algeria
Angola
Bulgaria
Congo
Cyprus

Czechoslovakia
Egypt
Finland
Germany, (East)
India
Iran
Iraq

Israel
Libya
Morocco
North Korea
Poland
Romania
Somalia

Sudan
Syria
Soviet Union
Vietnam
Yugoslavia

Figure 2-4. BTR-60P (Soviet).

b. BTR-60P (Soviet) (Figure 2-4). The BTR-60P and its variants are normally used by the Soviet Motorized Rifle Divisions. In recent years, however, a number of Motorized Rifle Divisions have had their BTR-60Ps replaced by the better armed BMP-1 ICVs. The BTR-60P is used by the Soviet Naval Infantry as its standard APC. It is not used by Czechoslovakian or Polish motor rifle units, though Czechoslovakia may use specialized versions of the BTR-60.

(1) Variants. The following variants summarize some of the key distinguishing features:

(a) BTR-60P Maintenance Assistance. These BTR-60Ps have been converted for maintenance roles and have a raised tarpaulin covering the troop compartment.

(b) BTR-60PA. This version has overhead armor protection for the troop compartment. The commander's and driver's positions are identical to those on the original BTR-60P except that the driver has a roof-mounted periscope and both have a single-piece hatch cover that opens to the rear.

Behind the commander's and driver's hatches is a single rear-opening rectangular hatch, in front of which is mounted a 7.62-mm SGMB or PKB machine gun. Many of these vehicles also have a 7.62-mm machine gun mounted on each side of this hatch cover.

A right-opening hatch cover is provided in the roof of the personnel compartment towards the rear on the right side. Three firing ports are provided on each side of the hull. No entry doors are provided on the hull sides.

A command version of the BTR-60PA is also in service with a roofmounted generator, 10-meter high radio antenna and a rail antenna running along the front, left side and rear of the hull.

(c) BTR-60PB. This version of the BTR-60P will be covered later in this lesson.

(d) BTR-60PU Command Vehicle. This is a BTR-60P fitted with bows, a tarpaulin cover and internal seats for the command staff, mapboards and additional communications equipment.

(e) BTR-60-60PU-12 Command Vehicle. This version is essentially a BTR-60PA with a large stowage box on the right side rear hull. A box, which may house a generator to power the additional communications equipment, is mounted on the roof. To the immediate rear of the commander's roof hatch is a telescopic mast. The BTR-60PU-12 operates with air defense units.

(f) BTR-60MS Radio Vehicle. This BTR is equipped with a radio and a telescopic antenna.

(g) BTR-60 Twin 30-mm SPAAG. This is a Cuban Army version that uses a Czechoslovakian twin 30-mm towed antiaircraft gun system mounted in an open mount on top of the vehicle.

(2) Recognition Features. The BTR-60P has

  • a torsion bar suspension with the first and second road wheels on each side provided with two hydraulic shock absorbers. The third and fourth road wheels are provided with a single hydraulic shock absorber.
  • a vision block to the left of the driver and right of the commander.
  • a windscreen to the front of the driver and commander that is covered by a hinged flap during action.
  • an infrared searchlight above the windscreen.
  • two half doors and three firing ports in each side of the hull. The firing ports fire forward only, not to the side.
  • a two-part circular plate that covers the water jet exit when the water jet is not in use.
  • a trim vane that is erected at the front of the hull before the vehicle enters the water. The trim vane is stowed flat under the nose of the vehicle when not required.
  • a front-mounted winch.
  • foot steps between the wheels.

(3) Vehicle Characteristics. The BTR-60P is a fully amphibious vehicle that is propelled through the water by a water jet mounted at the rear of the hull. The vehicle has an allwelded hull with the driver and commander seated at the front and an open-topped personnel compartment behind them. The engine compartment is at the rear. The driver sits on the left with the vehicle commander to his right. Specifications for the BTR-60P is provided in the lists and paragraphs that follow.

BTR-60P Measurements

Crew, 2.
Normal passenger load, 12.
Maximum passenger load, 16.
Configuration, 8 x 8.
Combat weight, 9980 kg.
Length,7.56 meters.
Width, 2.825 meters.
Height to turret top, N/A.
Height to hull top, 2.055 meters.
Ground clearance, 0.475 meters.
Track, 2.37 meters.
Maximum road speed, 80 km/h.
Maximum water speed, 10 km/h.
Fuel capacity, 290 liters.
Maximum road range, 500 km.

BTR-60P Armor

Hull front upper, 7 mm.
Hull front lower, 9 mm.
Hull side upper, 7 mm.
Hull side lower, 7 mm.
Hull rear upper, 5 mm.
Hull rear lower, 7 mm.
Hull top, 7 mm.
Hull belly front, 5 mm.
Hull belly rear, 5 mm.
Turret front, N/A.
Turret sides, N/A.
Turret rear, N/A.
Turret top, N/A.

(4) Vehicle Capabilities. The BTR-60P can

  • cross a 2.0-meter trench.
  • mount a 0.4-meter vertical step.
  • climb a 60-percent grade.
  • climb a 40-percent side slope.
  • ford amphibiously.

(5) Armament Characteristics. The BTR-60P has two layers of armament: main and secondary.

(a) Main Armament. The BTR-60P has a 7.62-mm SGMB or PKB machine gun mounted forward on the hull. Some vehicles have the heavier 12.7-mm DShKM machine gun at this position.

(b) Secondary Armament. Mounts for 7.62-mm machine guns are fitted on each side of the BTR-60P's hull.

(6) Countries Served. The BTR-60P is in service with the following countries.

Afghanistan
Algeria
Angola
Botswana
Bulgaria
China
Congo
Cuba
Djibouti
Ethiopia
Finland
Germany, (East)
Guinea
Guinea-Bissau
India
Iran
Iraq
Kampuchea
Korea, North
Libya
Mali
Mongolia
Mozambique
Nicaragua
Romania
Somalia
Syria
Soviet Union
Vietnam
Yemen, North
Yemen, South
Yugoslavia
Zambia

Figure 2-5. Soviet BTR-60PB APC.

c. BTR-60PB (Soviet) (Figure 2-5). The BTR-60PB is a variant of the BTR-60P and is essentially the BTR-60PA fitted with a machine gun turret and other modifications.

(1) Variants.

(a) BTR-60PB Forward Air Control Vehicle. This version is essentially the BTR-60PB with the armament removed. The resulting turret port is covered by a plexiglass observation window. A generator is also mounted on the top of the hull at the rear to power additional communications equipment.

(b) Artillery Command and Observation Post Vehicle. This version is used by the (East) German Army.

(2) Recognition Features.The BTR-60PB has

  • roof-mounted periscopes for observation to the front and sides of the vehicle in place of the vision blocks immediately in front of the commander and driver.
  • a turret that is identical to that fitted to the Soviet BRDM-2 amphibious scout car (ASC) and the Czechoslovakian OT-64 armored personnel carrier (APC), discussed in a later section.
  • a single-piece left-opening hatch cover to the rear of the turret on the right side. To the left rear of this is a single-piece hatch cover that opens to the right.
  • a single door that opens forwards and two or three firing ports, that only fire forward 60 degrees, and vision blocks in each side of the hull.
  • high hull mounted exhausts mounted on both sides. o a large hydro-jet cover mounted at the rear.
  • horizontal climbing handles on the sides.
  • foot steps between the wheels on both sides.
  • a fording plate mounted below the bow.
  • a covered troop compartment.
  • two square hatches on the top rear.
  • well-sloped armor.

Late production BTR-60PBs have the same sighting improvement as the BTR-70 (discussed in the following section), which consists of a small additional periscopic sight on the turret roof,

(3) Vehicle Characteristics. The BTR-60PB is a fully amphibious vehicle that is propelled through the water by a water jet mounted at the rear of the hull. The vehicle has an allwelded hull with the driver and commander seated at the front, personnel compartment behind them and the engine compartment at the rear. The driver sits on the left with the vehicle commander to his right. The BTR-60PB has a filtration and overpressurization system for NBC protection. Specifications for the BTR-PB are provided in the lists and paragraphs that follow.

BTR-60PB Measurements

Crew, 3.
Normal passenger load, 6.
Maximum passenger load, 8.
Configuration, 8 x 8.
Combat weight, 10,300 kg.
Length,7.56 meters.
Width, 2.825 meters.
Height to turret top, 2.31 meters.
Height to hull top, 2.055 meters.
Ground clearance, 0.475 meters.
Track, 2.37 meters.
Maximum road speed, 80 km/h.
Maximum water speed, 10 km/h.
Fuel capacity, 290 liters.
Maximum road range, 500 km.

BTR-60PB Armor

Hull front upper, 7 mm.
Hull front lower, 9 mm.
Hull side upper, 7 mm.
Hull side lower, 7 mm.
Hull rear upper, 5 mm.
Hull rear lower, 7 mm.
Hull top, 7 mm.
Hull belly front, 5 mm.
Hull belly rear, 5 mm.
Turret front, 7 mm.
Turret sides, 7 mm.
Turret rear, 7 mm.
Turret top, 7 mm.

(4) Vehicle Capabilities. The BTR-60PB can

  • cross a 2.0-meter trench.
  • mount a 0.4-meter vertical step.
  • climb a 60-percent grade.
  • climb a 40-percent side slope.
  • ford amphibiously.

(5) Armament Characteristics. The BTR-60PB has two layers of armament: main and secondary.

(a) Main Armament. BTR-60PB main armament is a 14.5-mm KPVT heavy machine gun mounted in the forward part of the vehicle. The practical rate of fire for this weapon is 150 rds/min with a basic load of 500 rounds.

(b) Secondary Armament. Secondary armament on the BTR-60PB is a 7.62-mm PKT machine gun mounted coaxially to the right with the telescopic sight mounted coaxially to the left. A practical rate of fire for the 7.62-mm gun is 250 rds/min with a basic load of 2,000 rounds.

(6) Countries Served. The BTR-60PB is in service with the following countries.

Afghanistan
Algeria
Angola
Botswana
Bulgaria
China
Congo
Cuba
Djibouti
Ethiopia
Finland
Germany, (East)
Guinea
Guinea-Bissau
India
Iran
Iraq
Kampuchea
Korea, North
Libya
Mali
Mongolia
Mozambique
Nicaragua
Romania
Somalia
Syria
Soviet Union
Vietnam
Yemen, North
Yemen, South
Yugoslavia
Zambia

Figure 2-6. Soviet BTR-70 APC.

d. BTR-70 (Soviet) (Figure 2-6). The BTR-70s overall shape is similar to the BTR-60 series APC.

(1) Variants. A number of BTR-70 variants are presented in the following subparagraphs.

(a) BTR-70 with BTR-80 Turret. A number of BTR-70 APCs have been observed fitted with the turret of the more recent BTR-80, which is discussed in the next section. Besides the turret change, additional firing ports have been installed in the very top of each side of the troop compartment between the hull sides and the roof.

(b) BTR-70 with AGS-17. A number of these versions have been observed in Afghanistan fitted with the pintel-mounted 30-mm AGS-17 automatic grenade launcher on the roof to the rear of the driver and commander. The machine gun turrets on these vehicles are retained.

(c) BTR-70MS. A turretless communications vehicle.

(d) BTR-70 KShM. A command/staff vehicle.

(e) BREM (Armored Repair and Recovery Vehicle). A BTR-70 fitted with a bow-mounted jib crane and no turret.

(2) Recognition Features.The BTR-70 has

  • an overall shape similar to the BTR-60 series.
  • three forward-facing periscopes and one sidefacing periscope for observation to the front and sides for both the commander and driver.
  • a turret identical to that fitted to the BTR-60PB and the BRDM-2 amphibious scout car.
  • a commander's single-piece front-opening hatch cover and a driver's single-piece rear-opening hatch cover.
  • two front windows, one for the commander and one for the driver, which are covered in combat by an armored hatch cover hinged at the top.
  • three firing ports and one vision block in each side the troop compartment to the rear.
  • two square roof hatches over the top of the troop compartment, each with a circular firing port.
  • a prominent gap between the second and third wheels.
  • cigar-shaped exhaust pipes mounted high on the rear of the hull that run down each side towards the rear.
  • a single-piece rear-mounted hydro-jet cover.
  • a trim vane that is erected at the front of the hull before entering the water and stowed on the top of the hull when travelling. On the BTR-60 series the trim vane is carried under the nose of the vehicle.
  • split rim wheels.
  • two foot steps on each side, between the first and second and third and fourth wheels and two small half doors, one on each side, that open forward between the second and third wheels
  • a low-silhouette stretched body.

(3) Vehicle Characteristics. The BTR-70 is a fully amphibious vehicle that is propelled through the water by a single water jet at the rear of the hull. The vehicle has an all-welded hull with improved protection over its frontal arc, as compared to the original BTR-60 series. The nose is also wider and the front of the vehicle provides added protection to the front wheels. The commander and driver are seated at the front with the commander on the right and the driver on the left. The troop compartment is to the rear of the turret and the engine compartment is at the rear of the vehicle. The BTR-70 has a filtration and overpressurization system for NBC protection. Specifications for the BTR-70 are provided in the lists and paragraphs that follow.

BTR-70 Measurements

Crew, 3.
Passengers, 8.
Configuration, 8 x 8.
Combat weight, 11,500 kg.
Length, 7.535 meters.
Width,2.8 meters.
Height to turret top, 2.235 meters.
Height to top of sight, 2.32 meters.
Ground clearance, 0.475 meters.
Track, 2.38 meters.
Wheelbase, 4.4 meters.
Maximum road speed, 80 km/h.
Maximum water speed, 10 km/h.
Fuel capacity, 350 liters (estimated).
Maximum road range with external fuel tanks, 600 km.

BTR-70 Armor

Hull
10 mm
Turret
7 mm

(4) Vehicle Capabilities. The BTR-70 can

  • cross a 2.0-meter trench.
  • mount a 0.5-meter vertical step.
  • climb a 60-percent grade.
  • climb a 40-percent side slope.
  • ford amphibiously.

(5) Armament Characteristics. The BTR-70 has two layers of armament: main and secondary.

(a) Main Armament. BTR-70 main armament is a 14.5-mm KPVT heavy machine gun mounted in the forward part of the vehicle. The practical rate of fire for the 14.5-mm gun is 150 rds/min with a basic load of 500 rounds.

(b) Secondary Armament. Secondary armament on the BTR-60PB is a 7.62-mm PKT machine gun mounted coaxially to the right with the telescopic sight mounted coaxially to the left. A practical rate of fire for the 7.62-mm gun is 250 rds/min with a basic load of 2,000 rounds.

(6) Countries Served. The BTR-70 is in service with (East) Germany and the Soviet Union and may be licensed for production in Romania as the TAB-77.

Figure 2-7. Soviet BTR-80 APC.

e. BTR-80 (Soviet) (Figure 2-7). BTR-80 overall shape is similar to the BTR-60 and BTR-70 series APCs.

(1) Variants. None.

(2) Recognition Features.In addition to the similar features between the BTR-60 and BTR-70 series, the BTR-80 has

  • a new hatch arrangement between the second and third wheels, the upper half opens to the front and the lower half opens downward to form a ramp. This configuration gives dismounting troops some protection against small arms fire from the front of the vehicle.
  • six forward-firing electrically-operated smoke dischargers mounted on the rear of the turret.
  • a turret-mounted machine gun that can now fire to an elevation of +60 degrees instead of +30 degrees as with the earlier model BTRs (developed for mountain fighting and ADA).
  • three redesigned and repositioned round-shaped firing ports on each side of the hull that are angled obliquely to enable the troops to fire forward.
  • two upper hatches on the troop compartment have two firing ports for engaging high targets.
  • two water jets fitted at the rear of the hull.

(3) Vehicle Characteristics. The BTR-80 is a fully amphibious vehicle and shares similar characteristics with both the BTR-60 and BTR-70 series APCs including a filtration and overpressurization system for NBC protection. Specifications for the BTR-80 are provided in the lists and paragraphs that follow.

BTR-80 Measurements

Crew, 3.
Passengers, 9.
Configuration, 8 x 8.
Combat weight, 11,000 kg.
Length, 7.535 meters.
Width,2.8 meters.
Height to turret top, 2.235 meters.
Maximum road speed, 80 to 85 km/h.
Maximum water speed, 10 km/h.
Fuel capacity, 290 liters
Maximum road range, 500 km.

BTR-80 Armor

Hull
25 mm
Turret
7 mm

(4) Vehicle Capabilities. The BTR-80 can

  • cross a 2.0-meter trench.
  • mount a 0.4-meter vertical step.
  • climb a 30-percent grade.
  • ford amphibiously.

(5) Armament Characteristics. The BTR-80 has two layers of armament: main and secondary. The new elevation modification increases the antiaircraft capability and is useful in engaging targets on steep mountainsides.

(a) Main Armament. BTR-80 main armament is a 14.5mm KPVT heavy machine gun mounted in the forward part of the vehicle. The practical rate of fire for this weapon is 150 rds/min with a basic load of 500 rounds.

(b) Secondary Armament. Secondary armament on the BTR-80 is a7.62-mm PKT coaxially-mounted machine gun. A practical rate of fire for this weapon is 250 rds/min with a basic load of 2,000 rounds.

(6) Countries Served. The BTR-80 is in service with the Soviet Union.

Figure 2-8. Soviet BTR-152 APC.

f. BTR-152 (Soviet) (Figure 2-8). The basic BTR-152 has no winch, open top and no tire pressure control lines.

(1) Variants. A number of BTR-152 variants are discussed below.

(a) BTR-152V1. This version has a winch, open top and external tire pressure control lines.

(b) BTR-152V2. This version has internal tire pressure control lines and no winch.

(c) BTR-152V3. This version has a winch on the front, open top, infrared driving lights and internal tire pressure control lines.

(d) BTR-152K. This is a BTR-152V2 with full overhead cover.

(e) BTR-152U. This is a command vehicle with a significantly higher full cover roof. This vehicle normally tows a trailer carrying additional equipment.

(f) BTR-152A. This is a anti-aircraft version with a twin 14.5-mm KPV heavy machine gun in a manually operated turret.

(g) BTR-152 w/Quad 12.7-mm M53 Machine Gun. This version is in Egyptian use only.

(h) BTR-152 w/Twin 23-mm (ZU-23) Anti-aircraft Gun. This version is used by the PLO.

(2) Recognition Features.The basic BTR-152 has

  • a typical truck-like appearance.
  • a box-like troop compartment with angled sides.
  • top hinged protective hatches for the front windows.
  • three firing ports on each side of the troop compartment.

(3) Vehicle Characteristics. The BTR-152 is a nonamphibious vehicle that has an improved (6 x 6) truck chassis and an all-welded steel hull. The troop compartment is to the rear of the cab and the engine is in front. Specifications for the BTR-152 are provided in the lists and paragraphs that follow.

BTR-152 Measurements

Crew, 2.
Passenger load, 17 to 18.
Configuration, 6 x 6.
Combat weight, 8,950 kg.
Length,6.83 meters.
Width, 2.32 meters.
Height, 2.04 meters.
Ground clearance, 0.30 meters.
Maximum road speed, 65 km/h.
Fuel capacity, 300 liters.
Maximum road range, 780 km.

Hull Armor Thickness
14-mm

(4) Vehicle Capabilities. The BTR-152 can

  • cross a 0.80-meter trench.
  • mount a 0.60-meter vertical step.
  • climb a 30-percent grade.
  • ford 0.80 meters.

(5) Armament Characteristics. The BTR-152A twin 14.5-mm guns have a practical rate of fire of 150 rds/min with a basic load of 2,000 rounds. Models mounting the 12.7- and 7.62-mm guns have a practical rate of fire in rds/min of 80 to 100 for the 12.7-mm gun and 200 to 250 for the7.62-mm gun. Basic load for the 12.7-mm gun is 500 and for the7.62-mm gun, 2,000 to 3,000.

(6) Countries Served. The BTR-152 is in service with the following countries.

Afghanistan
Albania
Algeria
Angola
Bulgaria
Central African Republic
Chad
China
Congo
Cuba
Egypt
Ethiopia
Germany, (East)
Guinea
Guinea-Bissau
Hungary
India
Indonesia
Iran
Iraq
Israel
Laos
Korea, North
Mali
Mongolia
Mozambique
Poland
Romania
Somalia
Sri Lanka
Sudan
Syria
Tanzania
Uganda
Soviet Union
Vietnam
Yemen, North
Yemen, South
Yugoslavia
Zimbabwe

Figure 2-9. Yugoslavian M-60P APC.

g. M-60P (Yugoslavian) (Figure 2-9). The M-60P is similar to the Western armored personnel carriers such as the American M59, M113 and the British FV432.

(1) M-60PB Anti-tank Variant. Mounted on top of the M60PBs hull, on the left side, are two 82-mm recoilless rifles on arotating mount. The M-60PB has also been observed with the recoilless rifles mounted on the top right side of the hull. The gunner has a single-piece hatch cover that opens forward and a suspended seat that moves with the rifles. To the right of the mount is a hatch for the loader. The recoilless rifles have a rate of fire of four to five rds/min.

(2) Recognition Features. The M-60P has

  • torsion bar suspension that consists of five single rubber-tired road wheels with the drive sprocket at the front and the idler at the rear, and three track return rollers.
  • the running gear outside of the hull armor and its top part is covered by a light sheet metal guard.
  • a single-piece rear-opening driver's hatch cover with an integral periscope that can be replaced by an infrared periscope for driving at night.
  • a co-driver's hatch cover with an integral periscope that opens to the rear.
  • a single-piece commander's hatch cover.
  • a machine gunner's cupola that can be traversed 360 degrees. The cupola has a two-piece hatch cover that opens to each side of the machine gunner for protection.
  • twin entry/exit doors at the rear of the hull.
  • hatches in the roof of the troop compartment.
  • three observation ports in each side of the hull and one in each of the rear doors.
  • a spare road wheel on the rear left side of the hull and a jerry can on the rear right side of the hull.

(3) Vehicle Characteristics. The M-60P is a nonamphibious vehicle with an all-welded steel hull that provides protection from small arms fire. The driver sits at the front of the vehicle on the left side and the co-driver sits on the right side. The co-driver also operates the bow-mounted machine gun. The commander sits to the rear of the driver and the gunner sits to the rear of the co-driver. Specifications for the M-60P are provided in the lists and paragraphs that follow.

M-60P Measurements

Crew, 3.
Passengers, 10.
Combat weight, 11,000 kg.
Length, 5.02 meters.
Width,2./7 meters.
Height without armament, 1.86 meters.
Height with armament, 2.385 meters.
Ground clearance, 0.4 meters.
Track, 2.385 meters.
Track width, 400 mm.
Length of track on ground, 2.94 meters.
Maximum road speed, 45 km/h.
Fuel capacity, 150 liters
Maximum road range, 400 km.
Maximum off-road range, 250 km.

M-60P Armor

Maximum
25 mm
Minimum
10 mm

(4) Vehicle Capabilities. The M-60P can

  • cross a 2.0-meter trench.
  • mount a 0.6-meter vertical step.
  • climb a 60-percent grade.
  • climb a 40-percent grade.
  • ford 1.35 meters in still water.
  • ford 1.25 meters in running water.

(5) Armament Characteristics. The M-60P has two layers of armament: main and secondary.

(a) Main Armament. The M-60P has a 12.7-mm M2 HB anti-aircraft machine gun that can be moved from the cupola to a tripod that is carried on the right side for a ground fire role.

(b) Secondary Armament. Secondary armament on the M-60P is a7.92-mm machine gun mounted in the bow.

(6) Countries Served. The M-60P is in service with Yugoslavia.

Figure 2-10. Czechoslovakian/Polish OT-62 APC (TOPAS).

h. OT-62 (TOPAS) (Czechoslovakia and Poland) (Figure 2-10). The OT-62 is a tracked amphibious vehicle that was jointly developed and used by Czechoslovakia and Poland. It is equivalent to the Soviet BTR-50PK APC and in appearance is almost identical to the BTR-50PU model 2 command vehicle with some significant differences. These differences include higher road and water speeds, a fully enclosed troop compartment and in some versions, fully-enclosed armament installations rather than simple pintle-mounted machine guns. TOPAS is the official designation of this armored personnel carrier with the designation "OT-62" often being used in the West. The Western term "OT-62" will be used principally in this lesson.

(1) Variants. The OT-62A is the basic version of the OT-62 series APCs and has no fixed armament. Some variants include a command vehicle, armored ambulance and light armored recovery vehicle (TOPAS-WPT). Other OT-62 variants are discussed below.

(a) OT-62B (TOPAS-2A). This version is used only by Czechoslovakia and has a mini-turret on the right front of the vehicle, which mounts a 82-mm recoilless gun externally and 7.62mm machine gun internally. Maximum rate of fire in rds/min for the 82-mm gun is one plus, depending upon the availability of an outside loader. Basic load for the 82-mm gun is 5 to 10 rounds.

(b) OT-62C (TOPAS-2AP). This version has a turret similar to the Soviet BTR-60PB. Main armament is a 14.5-mm heavy machine gun mounted in the turret over the troop compartment. Secondary armament is a coaxially-mounted 7.62-mm machine gun. A practical rate of fire for the 14.5-mm gun is 150 rds/min with a basic load of 500 rounds. A practical rate of fire for the 7.62mm gun is 200 rds/min with a basic load of 1,000 to 2,000 rounds. This version and the modified OT-62C version below are used only by the Polish Armed Forces within the Warsaw Pact.

(c) OT-62C Modified (TOPAS-2AP). This version carries two 82-mm mortars and their crews. The mortars have a rate of fire of 25 rds/min with a load of 50 to 100 rounds.

(2) Recognition Features.The OT-62 has

  • six road wheels, no return rollers and a torsion bar suspension.
  • a wedge-shaped front and a lowered rear.
  • an enlarged bay on the right side of the crew compartment.
  • entry/exit doors on both sides of the troop compartment.
  • a commander's cupola with a periscope mounted in the forward part and a hatch cover that opens forward and can be locked vertically.
  • three commander's periscopes mounted in the front part of the left projecting bay.
  • a driver's single-piece hatch cover in front of the vehicle that opens upward and has an integral vision block.
  • three periscopes below the driver's hatch cover.
  • three observation periscopes in the right projecting bay.

(3) Vehicle Characteristics. The OT-62 is a fully amphibious vehicle that is propelled through the water by canted twin water jets in the rear. The hull is all-welded construction with the crew compartment at the front, troop compartment at the center and the engine at the rear. The commander is seated at the front of the vehicle in the left projecting bay with the driver seated to the right of the commander. Specifications for the OT62 are provided in the lists and paragraphs that follow.

OT-62 Measurements

Crew, 2 (plus a gunner in turreted versions).
Passengers, 18 to 20.
Combat weight, 15,000 kg.
Length, 7.10 meters.
Width,3.14 meters.
Ground clearance, 0.41 meters.
Maximum speed, 60 km/h.
Maximum water speed, 10 km/h.
Fuel capacity, 400 liters.
Maximum range, 400 km.

OT-62 Armor

Hull
14 mm
Turret
7 mm (OT-62B and OT-62C)

(4) Vehicle Capabilities. The OT-62 can

  • cross a 2.8-meter trench.
  • mount a 0.9-meter vertical step.
  • climb a 38-percent grade.
  • ford amphibiously.

(5) Armament Characteristics. Armament between OT-62 versions vary and are discussed in paragraph (1) above.

(6) Countries Served. Czechoslovakia and Poland.

Figure 2-11. Czechoslovakian OT-64C(1) (SKOT).

i. OT-64C(1) (SKOT) (Czechoslovakian and Polish) (Figure 2-11). Jointly developed and used by Czechoslovakia and Poland in place of the similar Soviet BTR-60 (8 x 8) APC, the OT-64 (SKOT) is the official designation of this armored personnel carrier with the designation "OT-64" often being used in the West. Although a variant of the basic OT-64, the OT-64C(1) will be discussed in this lesson as the principle OT-64 APC.

(1) Variants. A number of OT-64 variants are presented in the following subparagraphs:

(a) OT-64A (SKOT). The basic member of the OT-64 series of vehicles, the OT-64As used by Czechoslovakia are unarmed while those used by Poland are fitted on both sides with open pintle mounts for 7.62-mm machine guns. Five hatches are fitted over the troop compartment, two open to the left of the vehicle, two open to the right of the vehicle and the center one opens forward. The five hatches can be locked vertical. Some OT-64As have been observed with two Sagger ATGWs mounted over the top of the troop compartment. Four Sagger ATGWs are carried.

(b) OT-64B (SKOT-2). This model has been used only by Poland and has a pintle-mounted 7.62-mm or 12.7-mm machine gun. The gun has a shield that gives front and side protection to the gunner, but has an open top and open rear. The OT-64B has three hatches over the troop compartment: one opens forward and the other two open to each side.

(c) OT-64C(1) (SKOT-2A). This is the version principally discussed in this lesson.

(d) OT-64C(1) with OT-64B Turret. This version is used by Morocco with the original turret replaced by the same turret as installed on the OT-62B full-tracked APC.

(e) OT-64C(2) (SKOT-2AP). This version is used only by Poland and is similar to the OT-64C(1) except that it has a new turret with a curved top. It is armed with a 14.5-mm KPVT machine gun with a 7.62-mm PKT machine gun mounted to the right of the main armament and the sight to the left. The weapons have an increased elevation capability, which allows them to be used against aircraft. Some vehicles have been observed with a single Sagger ATGW mounted on each side of the turret. The turret on this model is also installed on the OT-62C tracked APC.

(f) OT-64 Command Vehicles (R-2 and R-3). These two command models of the OT-64 have additional communications equipment and radio antennas.

(g) OT-64 Recovery Vehicle (SKOT-WPT). A recovery vehicle based on the OT-64 is known to be in service with Poland. This is armed with a 7.62-mm PKT machine gun and is provided with a light crane for changing components in the field.

(2) Recognition Features.The OT-64C (1) has

  • an 8 x 8 chassis with space in middle of vehicle between the second and third axles.
  • a wedge-shaped front and flat rear.
  • a one-man centrally-mounted turret similar to those fitted to the Soviet BRDM-2 (4 x 4) reconnaissance vehicle, discussed later in this lesson, and the BTR-60PB, discussed previously.
  • a single-piece rear-opening door on each side beside the commander and driver.
  • a driver's single-piece hatch cover that opens to the rear and three periscopes for vision to his front and sides.
  • a commander's single-piece hatch cover that opens forward with a periscope in the forward part which can be traversed through 360 degrees.
  • a searchlight mounted to the roof between the driver's and commander's positions.
  • air inlets and outlets for the engine on top of the hull and exhaust pipes on each side of the hull.
  • the turret mounted on an eight-sided plinth (lower turret platform) for weapon depression.
  • two troop entry/exit doors in the rear of the hull, each with a firing port.
  • four roof hatches that are hinged on the outside and can be locked vertically, each with a firing port.
  • two firing ports in each side of the troop compartment.
  • a trim vane that is erected on the front of the vehicle before entering the water and stowed on the glacis plate when travelling.
  • a winch mounted at the front of the hull.

(3) Vehicle Characteristics. The OT-64C(1) is a fully amphibious vehicle that is propelled through the water by two propellers mounted at the rear of the hull. The vehicle has an all-welded steel hull with the crew compartment at the very front, engine immediately behind and the troop compartment at the very rear. The vehicle is steered by the front four wheels. The driver is seated at the front of the vehicle on the left side with the commander to the driver's right. Specifications for the SKOT OT-64C(1) are provided in the lists and paragraphs that follow.

OT-64C(1) Measurements

Crew, 2.
Passengers, 15.
Configuration, 8 x 8.
Combat weight, 14,500 kg.
Length, 7.44 meters.
Width,2.55 meters.
Height to turret top, 2.71 meters.
Height to top of hull, 2.06 meters.
Firing height, 2.5 meters.
Ground clearance, 0.46 meters.
Track, 1.86 meters.
Wheelbase, 1.3 + 2.15 + 1.3 meters.
Maximum road speed, 94 km/h.
Maximum water speed, 9 km/h.
Fuel capacity, 320 liters (estimated).
Maximum road range, 710 km.

OT-64C(1) Armor

Hull
10 mm
Turret
14 mm

(4) Vehicle Capabilities. The OT-64C(1) can

  • cross a 2.0-meter trench.
  • mount a 0.5-meter vertical step.
  • climb a 60-percent grade.
  • climb a 30-percent side slope.
  • ford amphibiously.

(5) Armament Characteristics. The OT-64C(1) has two layers of armament: main and secondary. Some models have been observed with a single Sagger ATGW mounted on each side of the turret with lateral armor protection.

(a) Main Armament. OT-64C(1) main armament is a 14.5-mm heavy machine gun mounted in the forward part of the vehicle. The practical rate of fire for this gun is 150 rds/min with a basic load of 500 rounds.

(b) Secondary Armament. OT-64C(1) secondary armament is a 7.62-mm gun mounted coaxially to the right of the main armament with the telescopic sight to the left. A practical rate of fire for this weapon is 250 rds/min with a basic load of 2,000 rounds.

(6) Countries Served. The OT-64CA(1) is in service with the following countries.

Czechoslovakia
Hungary
India
Iraq
Libya
Morocco
Poland
Sudan
Syria
Uganda

Figure 2-12. Romanian TAB-72 APC.

j. TAB-71/TAB-72/TAB-77 (Romanian) (Figure 2-12). The TAB series APCs are similar to some of the BTR-60 and BTR-70 series APCs discussed previously and will not be discussed in detail in this lesson.

(1) TAB-73 82-mm Mortar Carrier Variant. This is the only known variant of the TAB series APCs and is essentially a TAB-72 with its turret removed and modifications made to the troop compartment to allow the 82-mm mortar to be raised when the roof hatches are swung open. Between 50 and 100 mortars bombs are carried onboard the TAB-73.

(2) Recognition Features. The TAB-71 is very similar to the Soviet original open-topped BTR-60 version. The TAB-71 is not believed to have been built in large numbers and it was soon followed by the TAB-72. The TAB-72 is almost identical to the Soviet BTR-60PB with a slightly different turret, an increased elevation for the 14.5-mm and 7.62-mm machine guns and a distinct gun sight on the left side of the turret. The TAB-72 was succeeded by the TAB-77, which is a copy of the Soviet BTR-70 with the only known difference being an AT-3 Sagger ATGW mounted on each side of the turret. There is also believed to be a 4 x 4 version of the TAB series APC, called the TAB-C, with a much shorter hull for use in a reconnaissance role. The TAB-72 APC will be the TAB version principally discussed in this lesson.

(3) Vehicle Characteristics. The TAB-72 APC is an amphibious vehicle with an all-welded steel hull. Specifications for the TAB-72 are provided in the lists and paragraphs that follow.

TAB-72 Measurements

Crew, 3.
Passengers, 8.
Configuration, 8 x 8.
Combat weight, 11,000 kg.
Length, 7.22 meters.
Width,2.83 meters.
Height, 2.7 meters.
Ground clearance, 0.47 meters.
Wheelbase, 4.21 meters.
Maximum road speed, 95 km/h.
Maximum water speed, 10 km/h.
Fuel capacity, 290 liters
Maximum road range, 500 km.

TAB-72 Armor

Hull (maximum)
9 mm
Turret (maximum)
7 mm

(4) Vehicle Capabilities. The TAB-72 can

  • cross a 2.0-meter trench.
  • mount a 0.4-meter vertical step.
  • climb a 60-percent grade.
  • ford amphibiously.

(5) Armament Characteristics. The TAB-72 has two layers of armament: main and secondary.

(a) Main Armament. TAB-72 main armament is a 14.5mm KPVT turret-mounted heavy machine gun with a practical rate of fire of 150 rds/min with a basic ammunition load of 500 rounds.

(b) Secondary Armament. TAB-72 secondary armament is a 7.92-mm machine gun with a basic load of 2,000 rounds.

(6) Countries Served. The TAB series APCs are in service with Romania and Yugoslavia.

Figure 2-13. Chinese Type 77-2 APC.

k. Type 77 APC (China) (Figure 2-13). The Type 77 is very similar to the Soviet BTR-50PK APC but has improved road and water speeds. Many of the automotive components of the Type 77 APC are also used in the Type 63 light amphibious tank.

(1) Variants. Two variants are presented in the following two paragraphs.

(a) HQ-2J SAM Carrier. This version has a much modified Type 77 APC chassis with seven, rather than six, road wheels on each side. Recently developed, this version will act as the transporter/launcher platform for the HQ-2J SAM, the Chinese equivalent of the Soviet SA-2 Guideline.

(b) Miscellaneous. The Type 77 can be used as an ambulance, command post, fuel resupply vehicle and load carrier in addition to filling its basic APC role. The Type-1 has three loading ramps that can be positioned at the rear to enable an 85mm Type 56 gun (with a crew of eight and 30 rounds of ammunition) or a 122-mm Type 54 howitzer (with a crew of eight and 20 rounds of ammunition) to be carried; the Type 77-2 has no loading ramps.

(2) Recognition Features.The Type 77 has

  • torsion bar suspension that consists of six rubber-tired road wheels with the idler at the front, drive sprocket at the rear and no track return rollers.
  • a single-piece driver's hatch cover that opens to the right and three forward-facing periscopes.
  • a single circular commander's hatch cover that opens to the rear and three forward observation periscopes.
  • hatches in the roof of the troop compartment and a single forward-opening door in the right side.
  • three firing ports; two in the left and one in the right side of the troop compartment.
  • a white light searchlight mounted on top of the troop compartment to the left front.
  • two water jets at the rear.
  • a trim vane mounted at the front of the hull for fording.

(3) Vehicle Characteristics. The Type 77 has an allwelded hull and is fully amphibious, being propelled through the water by two water jets at the rear of the hull. The commander sits in a projecting bay at the front on the right side and the driver sits at the front on the left side. Specifications for the Type 77 are provided in the lists and paragraphs that follow.

Type 77 Measurements

Crew, 2.
Passengers, 16.
Combat weight, 15,500 kg.
Length,7.4 meters.
Width, 3.2 meters.
Height,2.436 meters.
Track, 2.8 meters.
Track width, 400 mm.
Length of track on ground, 4.4 meters.
Maximum road speed, 60 km/h.
Maximum water speed, 11-12 km/h.
Fuel capacity, 416 liters
Maximum road range, 370 km.
Maximum water range, 120 km.

(4) Vehicle Capabilities. The Type 77 can

  • cross a 2.9-meter trench.
  • mount a 0.87-meter vertical step.
  • climb a 60-percent grade.
  • climb a 40-percent side slope.
  • ford amphibiously.

(5) Armament Characteristics. The Type 77 has one layer of armament that consists of a single 12.7-mm heavy machine gun that has a basic load of 500 rounds. This weapon is a copy of the Soviet DShKM weapon. The tank commander has no protection while firing the 12.7-mm gun.

(6) Countries Served. The Type 77 is in service with China.

Figure 2-14. Chinese Type 85 APC.

1. Type 85 APC (Formally YW 531 H) (China) (Figure 2-14). The Type 531 H was recently renamed the Type 85 and will be discussed as the Type 85. The Type 85 (formally Type 531 H) APC was developed at the same time as the Type YW 534, which is discussed later, and is believed to be the successor to the older Type YW 531. The Type 85 is almost identical to the Type YW 534 with some minor differences. It is slightly lighter, shorter and narrower, does not have the four smoke dischargers on each side of the forward part of the hull, and has three firing ports and vision devices in the left hull side.

(1) Variants. A number of Type 85 variants are presented in the following paragraphs.

(a) Type YW 309 Infantry Combat Vehicle. This is essentially the Type 85 fitted with the turret of the WZ 501 Infantry Fighting Vehicle (IFV) which itself is a copy of the Soviet BMP-1, discussed in a later section. In addition to the single firing port in the rear hull door there are three firing ports and periscopes in the left side of the hull and four firing ports and periscopes in the right side of the hull. The YW 309 has a crew of three and carries eight fully equipped infantrymen. A 7.62-mm machine gun is mounted coaxially with the main armament and there is a red Arrow 73 ATGW launcher over the main armament. This is also called the Infantry Fighting Vehicle Type 85.

(b) Type 85 Armored Command Post. This version is similar to the Type 85 but has a crew of two and carries six staff officers plus extensive communications equipment for which three radio antenna are provided. The driver sits at the front left and the commander, who also mans the 12.7-mm anti-aircraft gun is seated to his rear. The command area is at the very rear and has four circular roof hatches, one in each corner. The armored command post weighs 13,800 kg loaded. In addition, a four-barrelled smoke discharger is mounted on each side of the forward part of the hull.

(c) Type WZ 751 Armored Ambulance. This vehicle is also based on the Type 85 but has a new raised hull rear and a larger commander's cupola to the rear of the driver that is fitted with an externally-mounted 12.7-mm anti-aircraft machine gun. This vehicle has a crew of two plus room for medical personnel, patients and supplies. This vehicle is now called the Tracked Armored Ambulance Type 85.

(d) Armored Command Vehicle Type 85. This is the basic vehicle with its turret removed for use in the command role. It has a crew of two plus six command staff and an assortment of communications equipment. Externally it is recognizable by its pintle-mounted12.7-mm machine gun and three radio antenna.

(e) 120-mm Self-propelled Mortar Type 85. This version is similar to the above and has a 120-mm mortar mounted in the rear which fires to the rear. A total of 50 rounds of ammunition are carried. This version carries a six-man crew, including the commander and driver.

(f) 82-mm Self-propelled Mortar Type 85. This version is similar to the above but with a slightly different hatch arrangement and the 82-mm mortar. The mortar is also capable of being deployed away from the vehicle if required. This version has a seven-man crew.

(g) 122-mm Self-propelled Howitzer. This is essentially the basic vehicle with its turret removed and with the 122-mm Chinese-built version of the 122-mm D-30 towed howitzer mounted at the top of the hull rear.

(h) Recovery Vehicle Type 85. This is a basic Type 85 retaining its cupola-mounted 12.7-mm machine gun but fitted with a hydraulic crane on the left side of the hull with a lifting capacity of one ton, a generator, welding equipment, special mounting and dismounting tools, tool cabinet and a five-man crew.

(i) Maintenance Engineering Vehicle Type 85. This version has a similar hull to the Type 85 ambulance with a raised roof at the rear but is fitted with a cupola-mounted 12.7-mm machine gun on the roof rather than the forward part of the hull. Equipment includes generator, boom, inertia dynamometer, air filter cleaner, oil filter cleaner and other special tools.

(j) Thai purchase of Type 85. These versions are having their Chinese 12.7-mm machine guns removed and replaced by US 12.7-mm machine guns which are standard on Thai tanks. Some specialized versions of the Type 85 include a 30-round multiple rocket launcher. The launcher is believed to be a 130-mm (30 round) Type 82 truck-mounted multiple rocket launcher system.

(2) Recognition Features.The Type 85 has

  • a torsion-bar suspension with each side having five dual rubber-tired road wheels, with drive sprocket at the front, idler at the rear and track return rollers.
  • an engine compartment to the right of the driver with the air-inlet and air-outlet louvers in the roof and the exhaust pipe on the right side.
  • a driver's left-opening single-piece hatch cover and three forward-facing periscopes, one of which can be replaced by an infrared device for night driving.
  • a commander's single-piece hatch cover with an integral vision device.
  • a troop compartment at the rear with the troops entering through a large door that is hinged on the right. This door has a vision block and a firing port.
  • two firing ports and periscopes in the left side of the vehicle and three or four firing ports on the right side with a similar number of periscopes. (Other vehicles have been observed with three firing ports and periscopes in the left side and four in the right: there may well be differences between production vehicles.) The firing ports are provided with ball and socket type mountings for rifles.
  • a single circular roof hatch on each side in the forward part of the troop compartment.
  • two oblong roof hatches to the rear of the 12.7mm machine gun.
  • a trim vane that is erected before the vehicle enters the water.

(3) Vehicle Characteristics. The Type 85 has an allwelded hull and is fully amphibious, being propelled through the water by its tracks. The driver sits at the front of the vehicle and the commander sits to the rear of the driver. The engine compartment is to the right of the driver. Specifications for the Type 85 are provided in the lists and paragraphs that follow.

Type 85 Measurements

Crew, 2.
Passengers, 13.
Combat weight, 13,600 kg.
Length,6.125 meters.
Width, 3.06 meters.
Height to top of hull, 1.914 meters.
Height including machine gun, 2.586 meters.
Ground clearance, 0.46 meters.
Track, 2.526 meters.
Track width, 360 mm.
Length of track on ground, 3.275 meters.
Maximum road speed, 65 km/h.
Maximum water speed, 6 km/h.
Maximum range, 500 km.

(4) Vehicle Capabilities. The Type 85 can

  • cross a 2.2-meter trench.