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izwest

Ultra-compact armored vehicle for Mi-8












Today it is difficult to surprise someone with an armored car. But for the machine, which is now known under the designation "Weasels 4P" is something unique. This ultra-compact airborne armored car. The vehicle is working in Samara, specially adapted to the internal placement of the multipurpose helicopters Mi-8/17.

The developer of a new armored vehicle is LLC "Project Consulting "Innovative Chassis" from Samara. The company is developing a variety of wheeled vehicles. Among the main directions of work of the enterprise it is possible to allocate armoured assault machine "Locusts". Bshm on the basis of compact platform with the wheel formula 4x4 could replace obsolete in the army BRDM-2. The development from Samara lighter and shorter BRDM-2M, while possessing the best protective properties.

Another development of the company, which is often mentioned in the media, is an ultra-compact light armored vehicle with an unusual name "Weasels 4P". A distinctive feature of the small armored vehicles are airmobile properties. In future, the developers are going to create an amphibious version of the car and special modification "Weasels-RAP", which can be used to combat low-flying enemy drones.

Ultra-compact armored "Weasels 4P"


Today it is already difficult to surprise someone with severe and multiple armored vehicles. Such models and are active abroad and in Russia. Almost every manufacturer of heavy trucks managed to start production of armored versions. And the compact versions are less common, although the trend in the development of such technology has existed long enough. In Russia this car has only in the prototype stage.
Сверхкомпактный бронеавтомобиль для Ми-8
Render the armored assault vehicles "Locusts", pkts "Innovative Chassis"

One of the developments in this direction is a compact light armored car "Weasels 4P". The car was created on the basis of the experience and analysis of various combat operations in the framework of recent local conflicts. Its main purpose is to perform combat tasks special forces, intelligence, and advanced combat groups (up to three vehicles on a regular branch), as well as patrolling the area, ensuring action engineering assault units in urban areas, a forest, mountain and rugged terrain.

Light armored vehicle can be attributed to the ultra-compact. Modular cargo Bay and bronekapsuly car specifically designed with a low profile and under a small mass to provide transport within the Russian helicopters Mi-8. Including the use of transport-assault modifications of the Mi-8 AMTSH (export variant of Mi-171 sh) together with the battle group.

Curb weight of the existing prototype is just 2045 kg. the manufacturer of the machine claims that the design uses the engine units and components from the production of light off-road chassis of domestic producers. The total mass of experimental armored car "Weasels 4P" is up to 2700 kg, load capacity – about 650 kg.

In serial instance of the performance will be improved. Curb weight must be only 1900 kg (with 4 protection class according to the Russian classification), and the capacity will increase to 800 kg. Height armored vehicles does not exceed 1720 mm, width – 1880 mm, length – 4580 mm. In this part of the body of the cargo compartment can be folded, and then the length of an armored vehicle does not exceed 3970 mm Wheelbase of the new armored car – 2420 mm, the ground clearance is adjustable (260-370 mm). The car is able to overcome fords to a depth of 0.9 m.


A prototype armored car "Weasels 4P". Photo: pkts "Innovative Chassis"

Decrease the length of the armored vehicles of up to four meters is necessary to improve the ability of transportation, including aviation and transport trailers. For example, in the standard body trucks with a length of 12 m or 40-foot shipping container will accommodate three cars.

Light armored vehicle "Weasels 4P" was originally adapted for transportation of multi-purpose helicopters Mi-8. Thus, the standard dimensions of the cargo compartment of the helicopter Mi-8T are: height – 1.8 m, length of 5.34 m, width (at floor) is 2.06 M. the Helicopter is designed to carry passengers and cargo weighing up to 4000 kg.

Because of the limitations of the height of the cargo compartment of the helicopter Mi-8, the developers of airborne combat vehicles provided for tower installations, equipped with a folding armored shields and mechanism to remove the vehicle heavy 12.7 mm machine gun on a special pursuit. The basic armament of the machine must include one such machine gun "KORD", which may be supplemented by a 7.62 mm machine gun.

According to previously released images of a prototype of an armored car "Weasels 4P" design of machine applied the so-called facet technologies that provide effective rational angles armored surfaces of the body and reduce the visibility at a distance.

The manufacturer assures that due to the effective location and rational angles of inclination of the plates the total thickness of the elements in steel armor armored corps does not exceed 4.5 mm. While some parts of forehead of the body better armored – 6-8 mm. In General it can be noted that a prototype armored car "Weasels 4P" is based on the modular layout of the armored assault vehicles "Locusts", but on the basis of a lighter chassis with the wheel formula 4x4.


Buggy transport helicopter Mi-8AMTSH

In addition to the rational configuration of the reservation, the machine has its own block-frame chassis design that provides decent performance anti-mine protection. Bronekapsuly "Weasels 4P" should hold four people. For improved mine protection soldiers planned to use antitrauamtic seat and spall liners.

The concept of using small military vehicles


Development in Samara light armored vehicles "Weasels 4P", which can fit in the cargo compartment of the helicopter Mi-8, follows the world trends. These trends can be described using a small battle groups (groups) and a small but well-protected wheeled vehicles. Many countries, especially those in NATO, and actively use light armored vehicles, including mine protection. The greatest success was achieved in the US, where this technique is available in tens of thousands of pieces.

The emergence of new armored vehicles showed the conflicts of recent years. For example, the Soviet Union gained valuable combat experience in Afghanistan, but, in fact, he's still not processed and is not adapted to modern realities. Recent conflicts have a high risk mine warfare, including bombings of different improvised explosive devices on the roads.

Despite this, Russia is still almost entirely absent of wheeled armored vehicles with enhanced mine protection MRAP. While counter-terrorism operations in recent years, including the fighting in Syria, also confirm the need for the mass use of such equipment.

Another characteristic of local military conflicts of recent years include the widespread use of mobile and well-armed militant groups and units, as well as conducting highly mobile combat operations. Often, these battle groups operate in highly mobile compact wheeled armored vehicles and tactical military vehicles, and desert terrain buggies, Quad bikes and motorcycles.


American MRAP Oshkosh L-ATV

Create a compact, high security vehicles is an urgent task for many armies in the world. This technique is evolving and improving. Priority is often given to increase mine protection small armored vehicles to the category of MRAP, with good armor to 3-4 level classification according to NATO STANAG 4569.

At the same time in Russia, even special units not equipped maneuverable, compact and well protected armored vehicles with large-caliber small arms, to say nothing of regular army units. Moreover, existing in the army of armored vehicles "Lynx" or "Tiger" still are not widespread and have weak anti-mine protection (especially Tigers). Insufficient for direct participation in combat operations is presented and their reservation in the basic version, – class 3 according to Russian standards (level 1 to STANAG 4569).

The Russian army would be worth to pay more attention to the concept of using small combat groups of units, which is implemented in the armies of the United States, France, great Britain for decades. In recent years, this tactic is adopted by the Israeli armed forces.

In the framework of this concept in the United States since 1984 are being widely used multifunctional military Humvee SUV, which replaced in recent years come full MRAP type Oshkosh L-ATV JLTV Lockheed Martin. They are made tens of thousands of copies and have a powerful booking 3-4 level of STANAG 4569. At the same time for the marine Corps currently specially developed lightweight version Oshkosh L-ATV.

Russia does not have its Panhard VBL


In the French army for these purposes for many years used compact armored car Panhard VBL. It is lightweight and compact vehicle with anti-bullet armor, one of the protective properties which are small in size. This armored vehicle in its dimensions and weight as close as possible to prospective Russian armored "Weasels 4P".

Body length depending on the modification is 3800 or 4000 mm, width – 2020 mm, height – 1700 mm. Panhard VBL able to carry 3 people, being the basis for the placement of various weapons systems, including anti-tank. Small size Panhard VBL make the machine difficult target to RPG. To hit the target of unguided weapons is extremely difficult.


Light armored car Panhard VBL

Small and very maneuverable machine, capable of speeds up to 100 km/h, stands a low profile and a small area side of the projection. So, the area of the side of the projection Russian "Tiger" is approximately 9.4 m2, while the square side of the projection Panhard VBL is 5.3 m2 with the same level of armor protection.

It is clear that "Tiger" operating in a different weight class, as able to carry up to 4-6 people, but more compact armored vehicles of the national Assembly in the Russian army just yet. Their place could in the future take cars like Samara "Weasels 4P". Not necessarily this model, but is conceptually similar to armored vehicles with enhanced mine protection, bulletproof armor and a small size that could easily be used in remote areas.

The important factor is the ability to move these machines the most massive domestic Mi-8 helicopters. The need for such technology is even more evident when, in 2013, the internal troops and the border service of the FSB of the Russian Federation considered the possibility of the licensed Assembly in the country of machinery on the basis of the Panhard VBL.


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