DSA 2018: Kaplan MT seeks Indonesian qualification
The Kaplan MT medium tank, a joint design between Turkish firm FNSS and Indonesian company PT Pindad, is set to undergo qualification tests in Indonesia, officials told Shephard at the DSA 2018 exhibition in Kuala Lumpur.
These trials will continue through the Indonesian summer. Upon their conclusion, Cem Altinisik, PR and publicity unit manager at FNSS, said that he expected negotiations with Indonesia for series production to start next year.
Currently only one Kaplan MT prototype exists, this being completed in early 2017, but a second Kaplan is currently being assembled by PT Pindad in Indonesia. FNSS will transfer all relevant technology to allow future production to occur in Indonesia.
The Kaplan MT features a Cockerill 3105 turret from CMI Defence that is armed with a 105mm gun. The Kaplan is also available as an IFV with either a remotely-controlled 30mm or 20mm cannon in an unmanned turret.
Also listed in the FNSS catalogue is the amphibious Kaplan-10, which can be fitted with antitank guided missiles.
Altinisik confirmed that the Philippines is another market being examined for the Kaplan. Under their partnership agreement, the Philippines would fall under PT Pindad’s export territory, but it is understood that the Kaplan is already being discussed for Manila’s future requirement for a tracked light tank.
At DSA 2018 the Turkish company exhibited a Pars Scout 6x6 APC. This type was designed for a Turkish Army requirement for internal security-type missions. Still in the procurement phase, an order has not yet been placed in Turkey.
The amphibious vehicle exhibited in Malaysia was fitted with an Aselsan SARP RWS.
FNSS believes that Malaysia has a requirement for such a 6x6 APC as well. Although no formal procurement process has been launched by Kuala Lumpur to date, bringing the Pars Scout to Kuala Lumpur was obviously intended to ignite further interest.
Altinisik commented that the Kaplan tracked vehicle could be a future option for the Malaysian Army as well.
Meanwhile, FNSS continues to support Malaysian firm DefTech with kits for AV8 Gempita 8x8 vehicle series production, including some welding to help speed up production rates in Malaysia.
Of the 257 AV8 vehicles contracted, a total of 118 have been delivered to the Malaysian Army so far. Nine of 12 variants have been produced to date, with the mortar, CBRN and recovery types yet to be introduced into service.
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