A Turkish-Indonesian joint production medium-weight battle tank, KAPLAN MT has completed qualification trials and is ready for mass production in Indonesia which could lead to the manufacture of up to 400 units.
Turkey's heavy arms manufacturer, FNSS Savunma Sistemleri (FNSS) General Director Nail Kurt was quoted in an interview to Anadolu Agency on Wednesday that “the KAPLAN MT tank was successful in tests conducted to gauge its durability and shots, which stretched over nearly three months."
The 30 to 35 ton tank has been built on a project model agreed upon by Indonesia's PT Pindad, to meet the country's need for medium-weight tanks.
"There was a plan to turn it into a production project, we are now in that phase. A five-year budget is coming after 2019. The total need is between 200-400 units, we are talking about very serious quantities."
Kurt said they expect to sign a contract (with Indonesia) by 2019, adding that the two countries will equally contribute to the manufacturing process. He said a "small order" of 20-25 tanks could be taken even in 2018.
Kurt pointed out that the medium-weight class tank has important advantages such as easy deployment and low operation costs, adding that they were currently negotiating (for sale of the tank) with “three or four countries".
The KAPLAN MT tank's prototype was first exhibited at the 13th International Defense Industry Fair held last May in Turkey.
A CMI Cockerill 3105 tower equipped to fire high-pressured 105mm shells provides the tank’s primary firepower while secondary weapon is a 7.62mm coaxial machine gun.
The tank has a full automatic transmission and is able to carry three crew members -- a driver, shooter and commander.
With a maximum speed of 70 kilometers per hour the vehicle's range is 450 kilometers. Ballistic guards protect the tank's body and the vehicle has add-on armor. In addition, the tank's belly is guarded against mines.
Indonesia displayed the Kaplan medium-weight tank made by local firm, PT Pindad and FNSS Savunma Sistemleri from Turkey at the National Armed Forces Day parade on 5 October in Cilegon, Banten Province. The first prototype KAPLAN MT, designed and developed in Turkey in collaboration with leading Indonesian armored vehicle manufacturer PT Pindad and FNSS Defense Systems, was exported to Indonesia in September
The proptotype of a Turkish-Indonesian project to manufacture the KAPLAN battle tank in Indonesia will be displayed at the Army Day military parade in Indonesia in October 2018. Turkish armored-vehicle manufacturer FNSS and Indonesian PT Pindad have been working on producing the KAPLAN tank in Indonesia following an agreement in 2015 and work on the prototype is in the finishing stages,
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