Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Maneuver Combat Vehicle 8x8 & Japan's New Defense Plan

New Japanese Armor:
Maneuver Combat Vehicle

Japanese 5 year defense planning as announced last December, highlights an increased emphasis on defensing remote islands.

It seems the effects of disagreement on disputed islands with China greatly shaped up the defense plans for the Japanese.

Disputed Islands

Two important items for ground forces in the 5 year defense plan are:

- A rapid deployment division and brigades
- Marine brigade

Japanese defense planners logically chose a rapid reaction capability, instead of trying to garrison all the remote islands. Thus using airborne early warning capability to detect a potential enemy landing force, and either interdict the enemy formation before they embark or retake the islands using rapid deployment forces and marines.

The shifting defense plans are also reflected upon the equipment of the Japanese Ground Self Defense Forces. 

Maneuver Combat Vehicle
One interesting equipment is the Maneuver Combat Vehicle, an 8 wheeled tank destroyer/fire support vehicle with a 105mm gun as the main armament.

Japan's Technical Research and Development Institute either developed or coordinated the development effort of this new 8x8. It is believed that Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (manufacturer of Type 90 and Type 10 MBTs) will manufacture MCV.

MCV will be an important part of the rapid deployment capability which is air-transportable in the new Kawasaki C-2 transport aircraft.

MCV is a 26ton vehicle powered by a 570HP diesel engine satisfying 200 HP-per-ton and 100 km/h maximum road speed.

MCV dimensions are given below:

The turret has 3 crew members: commander, gunner and loader. The main armament is a rifled 105mm gun with a pepper-pot type muzzle brake. There is  a coaxial 7.62mm machine gun and another 12.7mm machine gun pintle mounted above the turret.

The commander seems to have an independent (panoramic) sight hinting on the hunter-killer type capability.

I liked the look of this vehicle. It gives an impression of a vehicle which is deadly and sleek.

I also realized the similarity in the design with Italian Iveco-Oto Melara Centauro 8x8.

©2014 Warfare Technology

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