VBCI, French high quality armoured fighting vehicles

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caid’s suggestion #106

I would like to suggest the Véhicule Blindée de Ccombat Infantry or more easily know as VBCI

The VBCI is a French infantry fighting vehicle built by Giat industry, designed to replace the AMX 10P. it was born from the program Véhicles Blindé Modulaire (or VBM) which saw the Renault X8A in 1996 but was a failure. As the VBM program was a joint development, France went on with their own idea and created the VBCI as a replacement for the X8A for their own army in 1999. quickly the project progressed and in 2000 an initial order for 700 vehicles was made even before the prototype was tested. the test happened from 2003 to 2005 when it was found that the turret had many flaws and needed to be redesigned. this caused 2 years delay and the VBCI was ready for production in 2007 with the first being delivered in 2008 to the French army. As for 2024, 630 VCI (which includes other variants) was delivered to the French army and saw services up to this day. the VBCI saw action in Mali, Lebanon and Afghanistan where it performed well. the VBCI is also a very versatile platform that can refit the serial turret if needed. but this suggestion will focus on the base version with the Dragar turret.

Firepower
the main armament was a GIAT 25mm M811 , which would be more than good enough to engage the armoured target. capable to use APHE, APDS, APFSDS and HE rounds, the penetration range from 40mm (the APHE) to 90mm (APFSDS). The armament is a auto-cannon with adjustable fire-rate of either 120rounds/minutes or 400 rounds/minutes . the M811 is a dual feed cannon with 220 rounds belt ready to use (175 rounds on belt #1, 45 rounds on belt #2). the gun can switch between 2 types of rounds without the need to reload, they need to switch belts. the elevation reaches -7°/+45°, making it great against air vehicles. furthermore, the turret is electrically powered making it fast to rotate and the gun fast to elevate. the rotation and elevation speed of 60°/sec will make it great in urban combat and capable of fallow aircraft. to improve the vehicle’s combat capacity in the movement, the gun is also two-plane stabilized which is a huge advantage in combat.

day/night vision sight are also installed have a 1x/7x sight , Fire control integrates a laser Rangefinder and Infrared .

a coaxial 7.62mm GIAT AA-F1N is installed with a 200 rounds magazine and 200 more stored inside the turret.

while the turret already has enough ammunition to be enjoyable to play with, more ammo could be carried inside the hull without difficulty, only the actual number of ammunition is unknown. The ammo load includes 220 rounds for the 25mm ready-to-use and 200 rounds for the 7.62mm

Mobility
the mobility of this vehicle is made to match the Leclerc MBT in all terrain. designed in an 8x8 wheel configuration, this vehicle can reach over 100 km/h on the road. i is powered by a Renault-Volvo inline 6-cylinder turbo-diesel engine providing 550 hp. the vehicles weighing 25.5 tonnes in combat load give an interesting 21.57 hp/ton. but this is probably with the lightest modular armour (aluminum) as the weight in operation is stated to be 29.6 tonnes.

the ZF 7HP902 offers 7 forward and 2 reverse gears, giving a smooth drive.
the suspension is a mix of hydropneumatic and oleo-pneumatic coil with a shock absorber to make it very smooth off-road. each wheel is powered and has a Centralized tire inflation system.


Protection
the vehicle has pretty good protection for light vehicles. the hull is made of Aluminium alloy with UHH steel element which can be replaced on the field if needed. the vehicle also includes spall inner and anti-mine caisson. the vehicle also includes an infrared decoy and NBC protection. for more active protection it also carries 4x Galix smoke grenade launcher on the turret 4x others are placed at the rear of the chassis. while advanced, his protection remains vulnerable to most tank’s main armament. the kenitic protection would only be enough against 14.5mm which means it will only be protected from the HMG. the crew only includes 2 men which is a major weakness for the gameplay. the vehicle is also rather large which makes it hard to hide. on the good side, it’s mostly empty space used normally to carry up to 9 soldiers. ingame it will just eat round after round while taking damage until the 2 men finally get hit.

additionally, a slat armor package was introduced in Afghanistan for the guerilla conflict. this armor package could be interesting to have as a modification and would improve the protection against the ATGM, HEAT, and HESH rounds.

Slat armour




Sources

source 1

…just kidding…

Giat industry












Jane's international Defense Review, October 2005



Revue Militaire Suisse, 2002



Thermal


Optics




steel hardness



Special thanks to @LeGrandSarrazin, @nxdefiant001, @Tylo_olyT, @Bossman919 & @ForeverAloneRage for helping gathering the sources

10 Likes

Such an iconic vehicle and a much much desired addition for the French tree! +10000

3 Likes

Easy +1. It’s pretty crazy this isn’t in the game yet meanwhile every other country has their in-service IFVs…

2 Likes

This would be a great TT alternative to the 30mm version we already have as a premium. +1

1 Like

+1

+1

1 Like

We need it

1 Like

How can anyone not want that humongeous love distributor in game is a wonder. It would neatly complement the 8.7-9.3 br range, adding a fairly good brawler and a way to contest advanced points early and release the pressures that the 30 dca has at being both the dedicated anti light tanks and spaa there

1 Like

Just some more info:

The commander sight is actually called MOP (moyen d’observation panoramique):

Spoiler

So it’s probably a derivative of MPS specifically for the VBCI.

SAGEM states MOP uses an uncooled TI which would be of the third generation. Also the MOP has a 20° FOV.

We don’t really need it, give us the 40mm instead

+1
We need more wheely bois !

1 Like

why whining on the 25mm when we can have it both 25 and 40mm

1 Like

the armour is an extimation for all the value. i base the value on the existing vehicles in game and the estimated thickness saw on the picture. this mean there is nothing reliable about the thickness of the armour

I am believing I under estimated the turret’s armour. from those picture we can see by the welding line the armour is way thicker


the turret is small and unmanned, which would have little effect on the survivability of the crew. but the damage on the weaponry and ballistic equipment could led to the vehicles being temporarily disabled in battle. the armour has been said to be immune against 14.5mm heavy machine-gun should have 30-40mm of RhA steel. from the picture, the welding seems to match. i will correct the armour value shortly in the suggestion