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MT-LB Multipurpose Armored Vehicle

The MT-LB (Russian: ???????????? ????? ?????? ?????????????, Mnogotselevoy Tyagach Legky Bronirovanny, which translates to "Multi-Purpose Towing Vehicle Light Armored") is a Soviet-origin, tracked, lightly-armored, multipurpose, amphibious transport and support vehicle. It was first introduced in the late 1960s and has since been used by various countries, including Russia and its allies.

The vehicle has a crew of two, a driver and a commander, and can carry up to 11 passengers. It is powered by a diesel engine, which provides a maximum road speed of about 60-70 km/h (37-43 mph) and a range of approximately 500 km (310 miles). The MT-LB is fully amphibious, meaning it can traverse water bodies without any additional preparation, propelled by its tracks at a speed of around 4-6 km/h (2.5-3.7 mph). The MT-LB's armor is light, providing protection against small arms fire and shell splinters. It is typically armed with a 7.62mm PKT machine gun mounted on the roof for self-defense, but it can also be fitted with additional weapons systems or equipment, depending on its specific role.

The MT-LB multi-purpose tractor, which was widely used in Soviet times as an armored personnel carrier in motorized rifle divisions. In addition, it was used as a sanitary evacuation machine, as a tractor of anti-tank guns T-12 and MT-12 Rapier, self-propelled mortar and anti-aircraft self-propelled gun. The machine was used during the war in Afghanistan, Chechnya and other armed conflicts. The transport and cargo department is located at the rear of the MT-LB and allows transportation of up to 2.5 tons of cargo or up to 11 people. On the basis of MT-LB, a whole family of combat vehicles was developed.

The MT-LB amphibious armored tracked vehicle is fully amphibious, propelled in the water by its tracks. The low-silhouette MT-LB has a flat-track suspension consisting of six road wheels with no return rollers. The box-like welded steel plate hull has a crew compartment at the front, engine immediately behind on the left side, and a troop compartment at the rear which has inward-facing folding canvas seats for 10 infantrymen. The flat hull roof has two forward opening troop exit hatches. The infantry enter and leave the vehicle by two rear doors which are provided with firing ports. The total of four firing ports also include one on each side of the vehicle. The small turret to the right of the commander's position mounts a single 7.62-mm machine gun. Standard equipment on all vehicles includes an NBC protection system.

The MT-LB is an amphibious armored tracked vehicle with a low-silhouette, box- like hull made of welded steel plates and a small turret on the right front, mounting a single 7.62-mm machine gun. There are four firing ports, one on each side of the vehicle and one in each of the two rear exit doors. Two additional, forward-opening, troop exit hatches are located on the flat hull roof. The flat-track suspension consists of six road wheels with no return rollers.

The MT-LB can employ an extra-wide-track with an "aggressive" grouser to make over snow and swamp operations easier. The wide-tracked version, designated MT-LBV, has a track which is 565 mm wide compared to the normal 350-mm-wide track. The wider track reduces ground pressure from 0.46 to only 0.28 kg/cm2.

The MT-LB is a multipurpose vehicle. When used as an ARC or command vehicle, it can carry ten personnel besides its two-man crew (driver and commander-gunner). It also is used as a prime mover for various types of artillery. In this case it can also carry the artillery crew (six to ten personnel). It is frequently used as prime mover for the 100-mm antitank gun T-12. As a cargo and general transport vehicle, it has a cargo capacity of 2.0 metric tons (towed load 6.5 metric tons). The wide-tracked MT-LBV is used as a soft-terrain vehicle.

The MT-LB is lightly armed and lightly armored. The MT-LB was first designated M 1970 since it was initially identified by the West in 1970. Its design is based on the MT-L light transport vehicle and prime mover. The MT-L, which is unarmored and turretless, was first developed for geological research in the far north.

The deep modernization of the MT-LB armored personnel carrier facilitates the machine for 800 kilograms and allows it to be sewn with additional armor in the framework of the state defense order. This was reported by representatives of the Remdizel plant. "Within the framework of the state defense order, Remdizel is upgrading the MT-LB in order to increase the power and controllability of the machine, as well as to reduce weight, primarily by installing a new KamAZ-740.50 engine. Power is increased to 360 horsepower, and the total weight of the armored personnel carrier will decrease by 500 kilograms," RIA Novosti reported citing a plant representative.

It also became known that a new hydromechanical turn-box will enable the driver to turn the armored personnel carrier on all transmissions with a controlled radius. The engineers of Remdizel intend to reduce the weight of the machine by installing caterpillars with a closed hinge. This will make it easier for the Soviet "Motolig" for another 300 kilograms, as a result of which the total weight will drop by 800 kilograms. "This allows you to put additional armor and protect the car," - said the plant 22 May 2018.

"MT-LB is a very reliable tractor, which has established itself as a hard worker, like a machine that does not fail in difficult conditions. Therefore, such a project would simply be a criminal throw, not using the entire modernization reserve. Yes, we can say that "Motolyga" is an outdated technique, that it is necessary to create something modern, but we must not forget that the new technology must undergo a run-in, suffer from childhood illnesses, etc. And then everything is ready, everything works, and I will note - it works very well," said Andrei Koshkin, an expert of the Association of Military Political Scientists, head of the Department of Political Science and Sociology at the Russian Academy of Economic Sciences imeni G.V. Plekhanov in an interview with the Federal News Agency.

According to him, the weight reduction will positively affect not only the strengthening of the reservation of the MT-LB, but will also allow the technology, produced since 1966, to become more dangerous on the battlefield. "MT-LB can and should be used not just as a kind of tractor, but as a combat vehicle that is capable of performing special tasks in the conditions of fire impact. And this will be very much in demand in various local wars, during counter-terrorist operations in the North Caucasus. To "Motolyg" you can hang up modern combat modules like "Arbalet" or even "Baikal", and they will greatly help in the same city battles in the Syrian Arab Republic. They will help cover the landing of the landing force. So I'm sincerely glad that "Motolyga" got a second life. Fast, maneuverable, and now also a dangerous tractor - what else is needed? "- concluded Koshkin.

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Page last modified: 01-05-2023 18:40:05 ZULU