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RN-94 66 Armored Personnel Carrier (APC)

The RN-94 is a 66 Armored Personnel Carrier (APC) jointly developed as a private venture by Romania's S N Romarm SA Filiala S C Moreni of Bucharest and Turkey's Nurol Machinery and Industry Co Inc based in Ankara. After development commenced in 1994, the prototype first appeared in late 1995. Between 1995 and 1996 a total of three prototypes were built, two in Romania and the last one being produced in Turkey.

In the mid-1990s the Turkish Land Forces Command had a requirement for up to 1,000 wheeled APCs. Contenders for this included the RN-94 6 x 6, Otokar Cobra 4 x 4 and the Alvis Vehicles-built Swiss-designed MOWAG Piranha 8 x 8. As of 2012 Turkey had not purchased additional wheeled APCs beyond the 535 BTR-60 and BTR-80 already purchased from Germany and Russia in the early 1990s.

The RN-94 APC hull is all-welded steel armor structure providing maximum protection against 7.62 mm armor-piercing ammunition and shell splinters all round. A higher level of armor protection could be provided if required, but the vehicle would be too heavy for its amphibious capability. The driver sits at the front left with the vehicle commander to the right, each being provided with a roof hatch that opens to the rear, and four day periscopes for forward observation.

The RN-94 uses a number of automotive components of the Romanian TAB-77 8x8 APC. It is powered by the Cummins CTA 8.3-10 diesel engine, developing 240 horsepower. Vehicle is fully amphibious. On water it is propelled by two waterjets. The engine compartment is to the rear of the driver with an aisle on the right side connecting the troop compartment at the rear. The exhaust outlet is on the left side of the hull with air inlet and outlet louvres in the roof. There is a forward-opening door in the left side of the hull that allows access to the power pack for maintenance purposes.

A total of 11 fully equipped troops can be carried, in addition to the driver and commander, with the capability of dismounting quickly through the hull rear, which has two doors. The upper part opens left and right with the lower part opening downwards to form a step. The upper part also has a circular firing port with integral sighting system with a vision block above. In the left side of the troop compartment are three firing ports with integral day sighting systems and two periscopes while in the right of the hull are three firing ports with integral day sighting systems and three periscopes.

The RN-94 was presented to the Turkish Land Forces Command for test and qualification purposes. After the initial tests were completed in 1997, the Turkish MoD ordered a pre-production batch of five more RN-94 vehicles for a more extensive series of trials. Three different turrets were adapted to the five vehicles based on the same basic vehicle chassis. One vehicle was fitted with the Kollmorgen Compact Lightweight Armoured Weapon Station (CLAWS) equipped with 40 mm grenade launcher; Two vehicles were fitted with a Turkish standard Gunner's Cupola equipped with a .50 (12.7 mm) M2 HB machine gun. The last two vehicles were fitted with the General Dynamics Dragon turret armed with a .50 M2 HB machine gun. The five RN-94 vehicles, delivered to the Turkish Land Forces Command early in 1998, each covered about 18,000 km by the end of 1998, including both road and cross-country running.

For trials purposes the RN-94 has also been fitted with a Nexter Systems (previously Giat Industries) Dragar one-person power-operated turret armed with a 25 mm M811 cannon and 7.62 mm coaxial machine. A 120 mm mortar carrier was shown for the first time in 1999 and is armed with a 120 mm mortar system firing through a two-part opening roof hatch. The rifled mortar barrel was supplied by MKEK while the recoiling mortar mount is from Soltam Systems of Israel. The Turkish company Deha Insaat is also involved. The Nurol Machinery and Industry Co has also completed a battlefield surveillance model of the RN-94 fitted with a hydraulically operated arm on which is mounted a locally produced ASELSAN battlefield surveillance radar.

According to the United Nations Arms Transfer List, in 2005 Romania supplied nine RN-94 in ambulance/APC role to Bangladesh. It is understood that these were earmarked for United Nations service. The RN-94 wheeled armored personnel carrier was exhibited at Expomil 2003 in Bucharest Romania, and at Expomil 2007. Further orders from Bangladesh were anticipated as the Army had plans to develop mechanised infantry units in all of its divisions. Due to the rising demand for Bangladeshi peacekeepers by the UN it seemed likely that the RN-94 would be deployed along with BTR-80 APCs, which were deployed by Bangladeshi forces for UN peacekeeping operations support and patrol missions. The Bangladesh Army also purchased another 60 BTR-80 APCs for peacekeeping roles. As of 2012 no further production orders had been placed. Marketing of the RN-94 seemed to have ceased.

Nurol Makina Ve Sanayi had had many years experience in the design, development and production of major sub-systems for tracked and wheeled AFV, mostly for the Turkish market. The company's efforts concentrated on the Ejder family of Armoured Wheeled Vehicle (AWV). Development work on the Ejder commenced by the company as a private venture in 2006 .

Weight (kg) 12880
Crew 2
Troops 11
Configuration 6 x 6
Number of drive wheels 6
Number of track links in the track chain 6
Length (mm) 6785
Width (mm) 2800
Height (mm) 2340
Track (mm) 2460
Wheelbase (mm) 3400
Ground clearance (mm) 450
Max. road speed (km/h) 95
Max. water speed (km/h) 9
Power-to-weight ratio (h.p./t) 18.6
Max. road range (km) 500
Main weapon caliber (mm) 14.5
Auxiliary gun calibre (mm) 7.62

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Page last modified: 12-07-2012 22:10:32 ZULU