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BMD-3 on display

The BMD-3 is a lightweight fully-tracked Soviet AIFV designed specificaly for employment in the fire support role withn the Red Army’s airbone formations, the VDV. As of early 2019, some 131 remain in Russian frontline service.


The vehicle was designed by the Volgograd Tractor Factory (VgTZ) during the period 1982-84. In design development terms, the BMD-3 was to a large extent a scaled up version of the preceding BMD-1 and BMD-2 armored vehicles; it was thus the heaviest AIFV to be used by Soviet airborne units. This AIFV featured a relatively tall tracked chassis with running gear comprising five small roadwheels per side plus for high-positioned, very small return rollers. On top of this shallow box-like superstructure with vertical sides and a well-sloped glacis plate.

High-lethality AIFV

Towards the front of the superstructure roof was mounted a medium-sized flat-fronted and curved-sided turret. This turret mounted three weapon systems: a dual-stabilized rapid-fire 30mm 2A42 dual-feed autocannon; a coaxial 7.62 machine gun; and a 9P135M launcher-post that could fire either a 9K111 Fagot (“Bassoon”) AT-4 “Spigot” ATGM or a 9M113 Konkurs (“Contest”) AT-5 “Spandrel” ATGM. Furthermore, the vehicle’s hull-front mounted a 30mm AGS-17 automatic grenade-launcher and a 5.45 RPK light machine gun. this wide range of weaponry provided the AIFV with unusually high lethality for its size and weight. The BMD-3 weighed 12.9 tonnes, was operated by a three-man crew, and could transport up to four paratroopers.

To offset the mass of its five weapon systems and keep the vehicle at a reasonable weight for air-transportability, the BMD-3 was relatively lightly protected. The fully NBC-protected vehicle featured thin alluminium alloy RHA hull plates and welded steel turret plates; this was edequate merely to protect the crew from 12.7mm heavy machine gun rounds. In addiction, the vehicle was designed so that its crew could quickly modify it in the field so that it sported SNPE ERA blocks. Powered by a 331kW diesel engine, the BMD-3 could obtain a top road speed of 70km/h.

During 1985-91, the VgTZ facility manufactured 36 BMD-3s for the Soviet airborne forces; in the wake of the late 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union, these vehicles were taken over by the Russian Airborne Corps. Between 1992 and 1997 the VgTZ factory (now located on the Russian Federation territory) produced a further 97 vehicles for the Russian Army. In addiction, during this period VgTZ manufactured a further 10 slightly modified vehicles that were exported to Angola.


Role: Armored Infantry Fighting Vehicle (AIFV)
Origin/Manufacturer :

  • Russia - Volgograd Tractor Plant

Weapon System:

  • Primary: dual-stabilized rapid-fire 30mm 2A42 dual-feed autocannon

    • Maximum Elevation: +75 deg
    • Minumum Elevation: -5 deg
    • Ammunition Stowed: 860
    • Ammunition Types:
      • 3UOF8: HEI, Cartridge 30 × 165 mm, Muzzle Velocity 960 m/s, Projectile Weight 389 g
      • M929: APFSDS-T, Cartridge 30 × 165 mm, Muzzle Velocity1,260 m/s, Projectile Weight 235 g
      • 3UBR8: APDS, Cartridge 30 × 165 mm, Muzzle Velocity 1,120 m/s, Projectile Weight 304 g
  • Coaxial: PKT 7.62mm Machine Gun

  • Optionally mounted: 30mm AGS-17 Automatic Grenade Launcher

    • Ammuniton Types:
      • VOG-17M
        • Type: 30mm Grenade
        • Cartridge: 30×29mm grenade
        • Warhead: High explosive fragmentation warhead.
        • Muzzle velocity: 185 m/s
        • Effective Firing Range: 8,00 - 1,700m
      • VOG-30
        • Type: 30mm Grenade
        • Cartidge: 30×29mm grenade
        • Muzzle velocity: 185 m/s
        • Effective Firing Range: 8,00 - 1,700 m
  • Tertiary: 9P135M launcher-post that could fire:

    • 9K111 Fagot (“Bassoon”) AT-4 “Spigot” ATGM
      • Warhead: High-explosive anti-tank
      • Penetration: 400 mm of RHA
      • Diameter: 120 mm
      • Lenght: 1,100 mm
      • Guidance system: SACLOS wire-guided missile
      • Speed: 80 m/s at launch to 186 m/s in flight speed
    • 9M113 Konkurs (“Contest”) AT-5 “Spandrel” ATGM
      • Warhead: 2.7 kg 9N131 HEAT
      • Penetration: 750 mm of RHA
      • Diameter: 135 mm
      • Lenght: 1,150 mm
      • Guidance system: SACLOS wire-guided missile
      • Speed: 208 m/s max


  • Weight: 12.9 tonnes
  • Lenght (with gun): 6.01m
  • Width: 3.13m
  • Height: 2.45m


  • Amphibious
  • Max speed: 70km/h
  • Speed, Average Cross: 40 km/h
  • Speed Maximum Swim: 10 km/h
  • Engine: 2V-06-2 diesel, 331kW


  • Driver
  • Commander
  • Gunner
  • 4x Additional Personel


  • Hull Armor: The protection offered is thought to be sufficient to stop up to 12.7 mm rounds fired at the front of the hull and at least 7.62 mm rounds fired at the sides.
  • Turret Armor: INA
  • Applique Armor: Available
  • Explosive Reactive Armor: No
  • Active Protection System: INA
  • Mine Clearing: No
  • Self-Entrenching Blade: No
  • NBC Protection: Yes
  • Smoke Equipment: three 81 mm electrically-operated smoke grenade dischargers. The BMD-3 ACV can lay its own smoke screen by injecting diesel fuel into the exhaust.
  • IR Signature: INA
  • Fire Suppression System: Yes

Fire Control

  • Thermal Sight Vehicle Commander: 1PZ-3 with a TNP-165A designator
  • Thermal Sight Gunner : BPK-1-42 with a TNPT-1 designator and a TKN-3B binocular sight
  • Main Gun Stabilization: 2E36-5
  • Periscopes: TNPO-170A periscopes and the TNPO-350B night vision periscope.

Addition features

  • Comunications:
    • Primary radio: R-173
    • Secondary radio: Digital R-168
    • The BMD-3 can be upgraded with “Berezhok” weapon system
      Upgraded BMD-3 with Berezhok

      Details View


BMD-3 combat vehicle at the VTVT-Omsk-2009 exhibition.

BMD-3 “Berezhok”

BMD-3 in early green livery (1990) showing its maximal hydropneumatic depression. It is 2.17 m (7 ft 1 in) high in this configuration

A BMD-3 during an exercise.

back of a BMD-3

BMD-3 with Konkurs anti-tank guided missile on its launch rail.


Imagery for the BMD-3 with “Berezhok”
Info about the BMD-3
Specifications about the BMD-3
About Konkurs ATGM
About the 9K111 ATGM
More History and Components about the BMD-3


1 Like

gib me BMP and take BMD

+1 Looks interesting! Hopefully it won’t be another event vehicle like the other BMD

+1, the better BMP

By the way: BMD-4 is an experimental vehicle. In the future, armored vehicles of the BMD family will also appear in the tech tree.

3 years ago…

1 Like