Mbombe 8 Infantry Combat Vehicle, South Africa
The latest multi-role, Mbombe 8 infantry combat vehicle was unveiled at Kazakhstan Defence Expo (KADEX) in June 2016. It is designed by South African-based defence and aerospace solutions provider Paramount Group in partnership with Kazakhstan Engineering Distribution and Kazakhstan Paramount Engineering (KPE).
Mbombe 8 is based on Mbombe 6x6 armoured fighting vehicle and is intended to meet modern tactical operational needs of the land forces.
The first advanced prototype will undergo extensive mobility trails in near future, following which production will begin in South Africa or Kazakhstan.
Mbombe 8 design and features
The Mbombe 8 armoured combat vehicle features an armoured hull and mine-resistant flat floor technology, and is based on 8x8 wheeled chassis.
The vehicle is 8m-long, 2.8m-wide and 2.4m-high, and has a wheelbase of 2.3m at the front and 2.55m at the rear. It can accommodate four crew members and eight dismounts. The gross vehicle weight and kerb weight of the vehicle are 28t and 19t respectively.
Payload capacity of the Mbombe 8 is roughly 9t including armament, supplies and crew.
The onboard 12kW air-conditioner with climate control system creates a comfortable operating environment by reducing crew fatigue.
The vehicle can be optionally fitted with a winch for recovering stuck vehicles.
The 8x8 infantry fighting vehicle is operated with different types of armament based on the mission requirement.
The standard configuration allows for the installation of 30mm or 57mm turret to engage light armoured targets.
The Mbombe 8 can be integrated with AU-220M remotely-operated turret system, developed by Russian JSC Central Research Institute Burevestnik. The weapon station is armed with a 7.62mm coaxial machine gun, a 57mm automatic cannon, targeting systems, and smoke grenade launchers.
Protection features of Mbombe 8 combat vehicle
The armoured hull of the infantry fighting vehicle offers high level of protection (up to STANAG 4569 level three standard) for the occupants against ballistic attacks. It also provides STANAG level 4a and 4b protection against anti-tank land mine explosions.
The vehicle can survive the detonation of up to 10kg TNT mine blast below the hull, and a 10kg TNT blast underneath any wheel. It can also withstand 50kg TNT blast at the sides.
The Mbombe 8 armoured fighting vehicle is driven by a 450hp six-cylinder, turbo charged diesel engine, coupled to a six-speed automatic transmission system that gives increased road speed.
The vehicle is equipped with a hydro-pneumatic, lightweight, independent suspension system, which provides better steering stability. The 16 R20 tyres, fitted with run-flat inserts and central tire inflation system (CTIS), offer high mobility.
It is also provided a 24V electrical system, an optional auxiliary power unit, and pneumatic disc brakes with anti-lock braking system.
Mobility of the infantry fighting vehicle
The Mbombe 8 infantry combat vehicle can attain a maximum speed of 110km/h on the road and travel up to a range of 800km. The ground clearance of the vehicle is 450mm and the turning circle diameter is from 22m to 24m.
The vehicle's approach and departure angles are 50° each. It has the ability to ford water obstacles of 900mm deep and cross ditches of 2m deep. It can climb steps of 600mm and negotiate grades of 60% and side slopes of 40%.
The onboard cooling systems and drivetrain components can withstand temperatures between -55°C to 55°C.
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