Tatra all-terrain vehicles are used for various purposes such as transporting personnel, tanks and missiles and come in different configurations. The vehicle was developed by Tatra Trucks, a vehicle manufacturer based in the Czech Republic.
Tatra vehicles are supplied in India by BEML, an Indian company based in Bangalore, Karnataka.
Formerly known as Bharat Earth Movers Limited, BEML is a major public sector company, which – in collaboration with Tatra Vectra Motors Limited – supplies defence material in India. Tatra Vectra Motors is a joint venture between Tatra Trucks and UK-based Vectra Group. The Tatra vehicles manufactured in India by BEML can be broadly categorised into two versions – vehicles with non-European emission standards (Euro) and vehicles that meet Bharat Stage – II (Euro II) standards.
Tatra all-terrain vehicle features and design
The Tatra vehicles have high-operational flexibility as well as functional adaptability. They have been extensively deployed for several all-terrain programmes and are highly mobile and reliable, and capable of managing cross-country terrain.
Tatra vehicles in the T815 series make use of the Tatra independent suspension system, which enables the vehicle to travel in difficult terrains.
Tatra vehicle orders and deliveries The Indian Ministry of Defence ordered a total of 788 Tatra vehicles, valued at Rs6.32bn ($141m), from BEML in March 2010. Three variants of the Tatra vehicles were supplied to the Indian Army.
The order includes 498 units of 8×8, 278 units of 6×6 (with winch) and 12 units of 6×6 (without winch) vehicles.
Slovakia ordered 166 Tatra fire trucks, particularly the 6×6.1 T815 – 731R32 25 325 type of the 7-series range in June 2014. The truck has the capacity of 9,000l of water and 500l of foam.
Tatra vehicle mission variants
BEML produces many variants of the Tatra vehicle in India such as Tatra T-815, T-816 and Hemang dumpers. The T815 series, in particular, has several mission variants and comes in 4×4, 6×6 and 8×8 configurations. Tatra T815 and Hemang dumpers are being used successfully in construction and mining sectors, running through rough terrains.
All these variants are heavy-duty trucks and are used by the defence forces for different purposes.
Other variants include BEML-TATRA crash fire tender (functioning like a fire engine), Prithvi missile (transporter cum missile launcher), oxidiser Carrier, warhead carrier, fuel carrier vehicle, missile transporter, 10t mobile crane, ammunition loader, pontoon truck (carry pontoons, helps in deployment of pontoon bridge set) and truck mounted crane.
In addition, Tatra T815 vehicles are configured as recovery vehicles and are available in three configurations, namely heavy recovery vehicle, medium recovery vehicle and light recovery vehicle.
The Tatra T815 VTI variant can carry payloads up to 10t and its functions include carrying battle tanks as well as personnel. Another configuration of Tatra vehicle according to the chassis includes WN, WNC and WL variants. These variants are used for various missions, including missile programmes, radar-carrying vehicles and also as bridge-laying systems.
The T816 comes in a 10×10 configuration with an antilock braking system (ABS). The payload capacity of the vehicle is 19,900kg, which makes the vehicle apt for carrying long loads such as missiles.
The T-815 chassis is used to mount different structures and create other variants for different purposes. Superstructures such as cranes and transit mixers can be mounted.
Tatra introduced a range of firefighting and military vehicles, also known as 7-series, in IDET 2011 exhibition in May 2011. The vehicles can be equipped either with direct air-cooled TATRA engines or liquid-cooled engines. The company also exhibited its brand-new T815-7Z0R9T 44 440 8×8 chassis type in the exhibition. The 7-series range includes T 815-7 8×8 recovery vehicle, CAS 30, the special firefighting and rescue truck, T 815-7 4×4 vehicles, and T 815-7 8×8 container carrier equipped with a special container fuel tank with anti-ballistic protection.
In June 2012, the company launched the Tatra PHOENIX vehicles, a new line of heavy trucks designated for the defence and military segment. It is fitted with pneumatic suspension on all axles.
Tatra T815 engine / propulsion
The Tatra T815 vehicles are powered by a single T 3-B or T 3-C engine manufactured by Tatra Vectra Motors Limited (TVML). The Tetra variants carry different variants of the T 3-B engine, including T3B–928–30, T3B–928–10, T3B-928–40 and T3B–928–70.
The T 3-B / T 3-C series of engines are air-cooled, four-stroke turbo-charged engines. T3B–928–10 and T3B– 928–40 comply with Euro I emission norms while T3B–928–70 complies with Euro II norms. The engines are available in the range of 235hp to 368hp at 1,500rpm.
The transmission of the engine is of the synchromesh type. It features ten forward and two reverse gears with shifting being manual and mechanical. The maximum speed of the vehicle varies between 80km/h and 90km/h, depending on the engine used.
The Tatra T816 is powered by the ISM440E20 engine manufactured by US-based Cummins Southern Plains. The engine is turbocharged/aftercooled and has an inline six-cylinder configuration. It features automatic transmission, one reverse and six forward gears, and is electronically controlled. The engine complies with Bharat Stage – II (Euro II) emission norms.