- I Don’t Know / I Don’t Care
- I Voted No
- I Don’t Know/I Don’t Care
- 9.3 or lower
- 11.0 or higher
- I Voted No
Not much known about this prototype, but it is known to be a testbed for Rafael’s RCWS-30 combat module.
The system was also tested, and promoted on IDF’s M113, on domestic made Namer APC and on other foreign APC’s. All these prototypes where made to showcase the versatility of the system, that it can be installed both on tracked platforms and on wheeled ones, all what is needed is a flat roof where it’ll be installed.
This particular prototype was made in a singular model, the platform as its name suggests on Achzarit Mk.2, which itself is a heavy APC that IDF converted from surplus of decommissioned Tiran MBT’s and there is not much footage of it, since all of it was made on a Rafael’s test sites for development works and promotion videos.
The reality in which Israel was at the time with regular interruptions in the supply of defense equipment by the west taught the Israeli defense industry to carefully use the available weapons. Many types of armored vehicles were repeatedly modernized, and when further modernization become impossible, they were converted into other types of armored vehicles.
T-54/55 are no exception, hundreds of them were captured from enemy states, and in Israel they became Tirans, they were modernized to meet the standards of IDF armoured corps, but as the time went on and Tirans started to become obsolete against modern threats, so there was several attempts to bring a new breath to the tanks, like Somovar program, but all of them failed, so it was decided to sell Tirans to foreign countries, but it was also a failure, only some Tirans were sold to Uruguay and many Tirans found themselves on scrapyards.
War in Lebanon initiated a need in IDF for a well protected APC. It showed that standard APCs like the M113 could hardly withstand RPGs with its poor protection, and the whole range of third generation Manpads used by the Hezbollah. So the idea came out to convert old Tiran-4Sh/5Sh into a heavy and well protected APC. This conversation was the firs of its kind, and afterwards it inspired many similar designs worldwide.
The original upper part of the chassis was entirely removed, and the lower part was deeply modified. A new more modern and compact NIMDA 650-hp engine was instaled ( which consisting of an 8-cylinder two-stroke water-cooled diesel engine “Detroit Diesel” 8V-71TTA developing a power of 650 hp from “General Motors” and an XTG-411-4 hydromechanical transmission from “Allison” ) and due to its compact size it was placed off center to the rear-left part of APC to make a room for right-rear access door. The original drivetrain and torsion bars were apparently left unchanged. A troop compartment was created in the central part, three crew members were located in the front, and 7 infantrymen were place behind them.
Protection being the main goal of the development consists of new add-on armour glacis at the front, and thick side armour made of ERA modules inserted into bulkheads, parts of composite armour up to 200 mm thick. And the roof was coverd with ERA briks to protect the crew and infantry from top atack threats.
The second generation of APC, developed and manifactured in the late 90s. With the combat experience gained in Lebanon, similarly to the Merkava, the Achzarit received improvements, which include a new 850 hp diesel engine manufactured by NIMDA consisting of a “Detroit Diesel” 8V-92TA (850 hp) from “General Motors” and an XTG-411-5 hydromechanical transmission from “Allison”, and armour upgrades. APC also underwent other minor modifications, but the main layout with 3 crew members in front, troop compartment in the middle, engine in the rear-left and right-rear access door.
As of 2004 the manufacturers claim that the machine can withstand repeated 125 mm APFSDS hits over its frontal arc.
Both of these APCs have one thing in common, their firepower is very weak, it consist of in the most cases of 7.62 mm low calibre machine guns and in some cases with 12.7 mm OWS.
But this prototype solves this problem, since the instaled RCWS-30 is armed to the teeth with a variety of weapons to deal with all cinds of threats. Which rightfully gives an Achzarit IFV status.
Achzarit has a high level of protection in the hull and low silhouette that in combination provides infantry and crew high level of survivability on the battlefield.
Protecting them from almost all modern threats ( even APFSDS threats over frontal arc, as in 2004 the manufacturers claimed that the machine can withstand repeated 125 mm APFSDS hits ), as well giving the soldiers ability to operate in contaminated areas. Currently “Achzarit” is the most protected personal carrier ( Not counting it’s brother “Namer” ) in the world.
The armor consists of add-on armour glacis at the front, and thick side armor with ERA modules inserted into bulkheads at the side.
The composite armor is known to be up to 200 mm thick, which is most likely the protection over the frontal arc, and in addition good angles make it well protected, from almost all projectiles, maybe in some cases it can bounce of APFSDS rounds. The side armor is most probably is half of that ( maybe 100 mm or less ), and even though it has ERA modules installed in it, the angle at which it placed is very steep. Which makes side armor weak, but it still can withstand some of projectiles. In addition Achzarit has fuel tanks installed at the sides, which makes it possible to stop or slow down projectiles that penetrated armor.
The back of Achzarit is less protected, aswell as roof, but roof has a ERA brick installed on top of it, that give Achzarit some chemical protection.
The combat module RCWS-30 basically has no armour, all of it’s components are exposed, the maximum protection is armor plates up to 10 mm thick.
The achzarit is also eqipped with two CL-3030 IMI smoke granade launchers placed at the front of the vehicle, both carry 6 smoke granades ( which makes 12 launches combined ), the main issiue with them, that they are fixed on the hull, which narrows the options for their use.
The prototype is armed with RCWS-30 combat module, developed by Rafael and contains all the latest technology the company has to offer,The main armament is a 30mm Mk.44 Bushmaster II autocannon, which is powerful and destructive, capable of fireing API (Armor-Piercing Incendiary), HEI (High-Explosive Incendiary) and APFSDS-T (Armor-Piercing Fin-Stabilized Discarding Sabot-Tracer) munitions with a good rate of fire, it is present in game on VCC-80/30 which is in Italian TT. And the secondary armament is a twin-tube launcher capable of firing modern Spike missiles of various models. The Spike is a well-known Israeli fire-and-forget missile designed and manufactured by Rafael. To hit an enemy target, you must first lazer-lock the target, and the machinery will do its job, the calculation of the trajectory will take a few seconds, and then it is possible to change positions during the flight of the missile. The RCWS-30 also consists of coaxial 7.62 . The RCWS-30 has 200 30mm rounds ready to fire ( in dual feed ), 460 for 7.62mm coax, and 2 Slikes in launch tube. More can be stored in the hull. Observation, selection and targeting are carried out through an Color / CCD camera with x10 continuous zoom and there is a night sight (Cooled FLIR). RCWS-30 elevation angles are -20° to +60° degrees, and turret treverce of 360° degrees, and the whole system is equipped with a two-plane stabilizer.
Since the prototype is based of Achzarit Mk.2, it is powered by 850 hp NIMDA powerpack, consisting of a diesel engine “Detroit Diesel” 8V-92TA developing a power of 850 hp from “General Motors” and an XTG-411-5 hydromechanical transmission from “Allison” , the weight of Achzarit witout a combat module is 44 tons, and RCWS-30 adds up juts 1.4 tons ( combat loaded ) while brinning a wide range of new cappabilities to the platform. The total weight of machiene is 45.4 tons ( with 14 of which weights armor ). The power to weight with these characteristics comes out to be 19 hp/t, with a max speed forward around 55-60 km/h.
Length - 6.2 m
Width - 3.6 m
Height - 3 m ( 2m hull height )
Weight - ~ 45.4 t. (combat loaded)
Engine - General Dynamics 8v22TA, 850hp water-cooled diesel
Transmission - Allison XTG-411-5
Power To Weight Ratio - 19 hp/t
Top Road Speed - 55-60 km/h
Suspension Type - torsion arms
Road Range - N/A
Main Gun - Bushmaster II Mk.44, 30mm autocannon / Spike ATGM.
Secondary Weapons - 7.62mm Machine Gun
Ammunition Storage - 200 30mm, 460 7.62mm, 2x Spike ATGM ready to use. Ammo storage in hull - N/A
Armor Type - Modular, composite, ERA.
Total - 3 ( + 7 infantrymen )
In conclusion, this vehicle will be a great addition to the Israeli tech tree, Israel currently lacks in light vehicles and support vehicles. Although there is alot more israeli Platforms with RCWS-30 suggested, I desided to make this one as another option, to be added as a event or squdron vehile. It is one of the best options for israel to have, it has great armor and wide range of weponary. Making this vehicle sutiable for almost all situtainos to use.
Thank you for reading my suggestion trough to the end, If you are interested you can check out my previous suggestions via my profile, as of right now I havent transfered all of my suggestions from the old forum so you can check out them through the links there.
And as always if you noticed any mistakes or have any helpful sources, please let me know and I will make necessary corrections.
gelbart, marsh (2004). modern israeli tanks and infantry carriers 1985-2004
Bushmaster 2 Mk.44