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TR-125 / Tanc Romanesc 125

Romania purchased 30 T-72 from the USSR in 1979 and had plans underway in 1984 to license manufacture a version of the T-72 in Romania, powered by a French diesel engine. Designated TR-125, the Romanian T-72 variant had other changes as well, including seven roadwheels instead of the six on the normal T-72. Apparently, the Romanian program has not progressed beyond prototypes.

Between the years 1987 and 1988, in a very short time, Romania managed the design and implementation of the prototype tank, Romanian TR-125 (P. 125). It encompass the latest achievements of Romanian researchers and experience of national defense industry. The turret and automatic loading elements of this tank has been designed by ICSITEM Bucuresti and chassis, although falling into it aggregates, was designed by ACSIT-p 124 of the structure F.M.G.S. Bucuresti.

It is worth noting that, on this tank were mounted the most modern equipment which were experimentation or assimilation in the manufacturing industry: 125 mm cannon caliber, stabilizer on your cannon 2E 25 m, automatically loading mechanism on your cannon, computer balistic, new projector-type l-2, warning against laser illumination for launching rocket-buoyant smoke and heat traps, etc. At the same time, failed to experimentation and assimilation of new types of ammunition for Cannon, buoyant smoke grenade launchers, etc.

The TR-125 tank was a redesigned T-72 Soviet main battle tank which had a number of significant differences from the original vehicle that entered production as far back as 1971-72. Number 125 in the designation stands for the 125 mm A555 smoothbore tank gun. TR-125 boosted extra armor, modified suspensions and a more powerful diesel engine. The T-72 weighs 41 tons whereas the TR-125 weighed 48 tons, due to increased armor protection over the frontal arc, which is also a feature of more recent T-72s.

The TR-125 had seven road wheels of a different design - wheels, unlike the T-72 and most tanks based on it which have six, and a new one-piece skirt. The TR-125 was powered by a more powerful 880 hp 8VSA3 diesel engine, based on the US Teledyne AVDS, which gives a better power-to-weight ratio. Armament of the TR-125 is identical to the Soviet T-72 and eight forward-firing smoke grenade dischargers are mounted on the left side of the turret. It used an old DShK machine gun for anti-aircraft purposes.

The 125mm gun would have been a big improvement over the current 100mm of the TR-85, and not to mention all the other improvements. But the T-72 was not as good a tank as promoted. With an automatic loader that jams, cramped interior (in the Russian army small people at 1.60 m are selected for the crew).

In 1989 it was disclosed that Romania was manufacturing an improved version of the Soviet T-72 series MBT under the designation of the TR-125. Because of Ceausescu's obsession to produce everything in country, he simply couldn't grasp the economics of the fact that Romania can't produce 100% of everything in country without bankrupting yourself. Some said the standard T-72 was too complex for Romanian industry to handle. Mass production of the TR-125 was planned, as Romania had a tradition of producing only weapons that are made of domestic made components therefore works on a such a variant were started in mid 1980's. Three (five according to other sources) prototypes were made and tested, in addition to 30 purchased T-72s in 1978. The purchased T-72s were the early T-72 Ural-1 version. Romania was refused by the USSR in 1984-85 in buying license for T-72 variant but still managed to build a few by 1989.

The Tancul Romnesc TR-125 was developed n the period 1985-1990. The Romanian Army reports that a total of 10 such tanks were produced. The Romanians could compare the both and decided to go with the TR-85, from which already had over 300.

After the revolution it was planned to build a new tank, TR-2000, with german support, based, or inspired by Leopard 2. There was a plan for TR-2000, based on or influenced by Leopard-2. In the 90`s there were some discussions with the germans. For moment there is no plan to replace the TR-85, maybe also because it was just upgraded (well, 56 from the 315 initialy planned).

Production 1984-1991
Weight 50 t
Crew3 military
Arms
Cannon 125 mm, 8 shots per minute
Machine gun A.A.1 x 12.7 mm
Machine gun dual purpose1 x 7.62 mm
grenade Launcher4-6 tubes 81 mm
Engine 8 VS. A3 diesel, 8-cylinder, 4-stroke overhead
Engine power900 HP
Specific Power18.75 CP/t
Automatic Transmission hidromecanica,
pressure on the ground0,875 Dan/cm2
Longitudinal Slope32
Maximum speed 60 km/h
Autonomy (without additional barrels)-400 km
Ammunition
  • 39 rounds 125 mm,
  • 2,000 cartridges 7.62 mm
  • 300 12.7 mm cartridges
  • 20 smoke grenades
  • Fire control SystemHydraulic turret/tun stabilized in two planes, with integrated laser rangefinder and SCF
    range200 to 5 000 m
    Direct range4000 m APFSD
    Armor protection
  • turret - 400 mm with extra armor
  • Chassis - 200 mm laminated


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