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The world's 10 best armoured personnel carriers

11 December 2013




Armoured personnel carriers, popularly called APCs, have occupied an important role in military operations since World War I. Modern APCs such as Patria AMV, Boxer and Piranha V offer enhanced protection, enabling safer infantry deployment in high-threat areas. Army-technology.com lists some of the best armoured personnel carriers operated today, based on protection and mobility.


The world's 10 best armoured personnel carriers

Patria AMV

The Patria AMV (Armoured Modular Vehicle) is a modern 8x8 armoured wheeled vehicle manufactured by Finland-based Patria. The vehicle was introduced into the market in 2004 and about 1,400 vehicles have been ordered by the armed forces of Finland, Croatia, Poland, Slovenia, South Africa, Sweden and UAE to date.

The Patria AMV, carries three crew and up to ten troops, protecting the crew from improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and explosively formed penetrators (EFP). Its forward hull offers ballistic protection against Armour Piercing Fin Stabilised Discarding Sabot-Tracer (APFSDS-T) of up to 30mm. The vehicle can also withstand explosive mines of up to 10kg.

The Armoured Personnel Carrier (APC) version of Patria AMV is fitted with Patria PML 127 OWS turret mounting a 12.7mm heavy machine gun. The vehicle has a maximum speed of over 100km/h and an operational range of 800km.

Boxer APC

The Boxer APC version is one of the world's best armoured personnel carriers produced by ARTEC, a joint venture between Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW) and Rheinmetall. Primarily operated by German Army, the Boxer APC can safely transport 11 occupants including three crew and eight infantrymen.

The vehicle is integrated with spaced and sloped armour solutions for protection against mines, IEDs and ballistic threats. It protects the crew from anti-tank and anti-personnel mines, bomblets and artillery shells, and offers all-round ballistic protection against arms up to 14.5mm at 30° elevation.

FLW 200 remote-controlled light weapon station aboard the vehicle is installed with a 12.7mm heavy machine gun or a 40mm automatic grenade launcher. The vehicle also supports IdZ (Infantryman of the future) technology developed by the German Army. The Boxer armoured personnel carrier has a top speed of 103km/h and a class-leading range of 1,050km.

Piranha V

The Piranha V is a latest member in the family of Piranha multi-role wheeled armoured vehicles manufactured by MOWAG (now known as General Dynamics European Land Systems-Mowag).

The Piranha V armoured personnel carrier accommodates 13 personnel in a well-protected armoured hull resisting the impact of mines, IEDs and EFP threats. The vehicle can be fitted with active protection system and add-on armour offering various levels of protection with over 95% coverage.

The carrier can be armed with modular weapon platforms ranging from remotely controlled light weapon stations to heavy turret/gun systems such as LANCE 30mm Modular Turret System. It integrates a MTU diesel engine and Fuel Efficient Drive train System (FEDS), which provide a maximum speed of 100km/h and range of 550km.

Pandur II 8x8

Pandur II 8x8 armoured personnel carrier is an improved version of the Pandur I 6x6 wheeled armoured vehicle produced by General Dynamics European Land Systems-Steyr. The vehicle is currently in service with the Czech Army and the Portuguese Armed Forces.

The Pandur II APC offers seating for 14 troops including crew and can be integrated with modular, scalable armoured solutions for protection against ballistic threats, mines, IEDs, and rocket propelled grenades (RPGs).

The SP30 turret atop the Pandur II is armed with a Mauser 30mm MK 30-2 cannon, while vehicles used by the Czech Army are equipped with RAFAEL RCWS-30 mounting ATK MK44 30mm cannon. Secondary armament includes a 7.62mm machine gun and 76mm smoke grenade launchers. The vehicle has a maximum speed of 105km/h and range of 700km.

ARMA 8x8 APC

The ARMA 8x8 modular wheeled armoured vehicle was unveiled by Turkey-based Otokar Otomotiv ve Savunma Sanayi at International Defence Industry Fair (IDF) 2013. The base ARMA vehicle serves as a modular platform for a variety of mission configurations.

The ARMA APC vehicle's internal layout is designed to accommodate a driver, commander, and ten troops. The armoured hull offers high level of protection against Kinetic Energy (KE) penetrators, mines, RPGs, EFPs, and IEDs.

The APC version of ARMA is fitted with a remote weapons station with 7.62mm/12.7mm machine gun or open cupola with 20mm cannon or Mizrak-30 medium calibre remotely controlled turret mounting a 30mm gun. The 8.9L, six-cylinder diesel engine ensures a top speed of 105km/h and the vehicle can achieve a range of 700km.

AV8 8x8 APC

The AV8 armoured personnel carrier (APC) is manufactured by Deftech in collaboration with FNSS and was introduced in 2012. The vehicle was developed for the Malaysian Armed Forces, based on FNSS' Pars 8x8 APC vehicles which are in service with the Turkish Army.

The vehicle has the capacity to carry 13 troops and is fitted with a composite aluminium and steel armour. It also has additional armour hinged to the front area as well as either side of the hull.

The AV8 vehicle is equipped with two-man Denel LTC30 turret with a 30mm GI-30 cannon and a FN Herstal MAG 58M coaxial 7.62mm machine gun. It is powered by a Deutz turbocharged diesel engine and can attain a maximum speed of 100km/h and cruise range of 700km.

Terrex 8x8 APC

The Terrex 8x8 armoured personnel carrier (APC) is manufactured by ST Kinetics and in service with the Singapore Armed Forces. The vehicle, offering greater mobility and enhanced survivability, carries 13 troops. It has a built-in central tyre inflation system that permits automated inflation and deflation of tyres for different terrains during movement.

The APC is equipped with active and passive armour suites and can be protected against IEDs and mines. It contains a twin-weapon remote control weapons system including a 40mm automatic grenade launcher and a 7.62mm general purpose machine gun, or a 0.5'' HMG.

The vehicle runs on a six-cylinder, four-stroke Caterpillar C9 turbo diesel engine, which generates 450hp of power enabling the vehicle to attain a maximum speed of 105km/h and range of 600km.

BTR-4 8x8 APC

The BTR-4 is an 8x8 armoured personnel carrier (APC) manufactured by Kharkiv Morozov Machine Building Design Bureau of Ukraine. The vehicles are in service with the armies of Iraq and Ukraine transporting troops of mechanised infantry units and providing fire support in combat actions.

The BTR-4 APC was introduced in 2006 and production started in 2008. It can carry three crew and seven passengers, and can survive against automatic small-calibre guns. It can be operated in all climatic conditions during day and night.

The APC is fitted with a 30mm automatic gun and a 7.62mm machine gun, and also has a 30mm grenade launcher and anti-tank missile system. It runs on a 3TD diesel engine generating 500hp enabling a maximum speed of 110km/h and cruise range of 690km.

BTR-82A APC

The BTR-82A, an improved version of BTR-80 family of vehicles, is an 8x8 armoured personnel carrier (APC) being produced by Military Industrial Company of Russia for use by the armies of Russia and Kazakhstan.

Production of the BTR-82A APCs was commenced in September 2013 and the first vehicle is expected to be delivered to the Russian Army in 2015. The vehicle can carry three crew and seven passengers and offers more advanced protection compared to the BTR-80. Spall liners inside the BTR-82A armour protect crew against mines and IEDs.

The vehicle features reinforced floor with multi layers and is fitted with a 30mm 2A72 dual-feed cannon and a 7.62mm PKTM machine gun. It is powered by a 300hp KAMAZ 740.14-300 turbo diesel engine, and has a maximum road speed of 100km/h and maximum range of 600km.

Stryker ICV

The Stryker Infantry Carrier Vehicles (ICV) are manufactured by General Dynamics Land Systems and operated by the US Army. The ICV entered into service in 2002 and is produced in eight variants. It can carry two crew and nine passengers.

The hardened steel hull of the vehicle provides basic protection. The vehicle also features spall liners and can be fitted with a variety of survivability kits. In addition, it is equipped with a remote weapon station with 50 calibre or MK 19 smoke grenade launchers for protection from direct fire.

Powered by a Caterpillar JP-8 diesel engine rated at 350hp, the vehicle can accomplish a maximum speed of 96.5km/h and maximum range of 530km.

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Patria received orders for 1,400 armoured modular vehicles from seven armed forces.
The Boxer APC is one of the best armoured personnel carriers in the world.
The Piranha V is a fifth generation multi-role wheeled armoured vehicle in the range of Piranha vehicles offered by General Dynamics European Land Systems-Mowag.
The Pandur II 8x8 armoured personnel carrier is operated by Czech Army and the Portuguese Armed Forces.
The ARMA 8x8 from Otokar is a new generation wheeled armoured personnel carrier offering mobility, modularity and protection.
The AV8 APC can attain a maximum speed of 100km/h.
Terrex 8x8 armoured personnel carrier can carry 13 troops.
Production of the BTR-4 APC was started in 2008.
The BTR-82A APC is fitted with a 30mm 2A72 dual-feed cannon and a 7.62mm PKTM machine gun.
The Stryker ICV entered into service with the US Army in 2002.