08 April 2009

Malaysia Is First KIFV Export Customer

4 Desember 1993

KIFV - Korean-made tracked vehicle (photo : travel image)

Malaysia has taken delivery of 42 Korean Infantry Fighting Vehicles (KIFVs, right) worth M$63 million ($25.2 million) from South Korea's Daewoo Heavy Industries. This is the first KIFV export order. The purchase involves five variants of the KIFV, which was developed in the early 1980s for the South Korean Army and entered service in1985. The variants comprise a troop carrier operated by two crew and holding nine infantry, a command vehicle, mortar carrier, recovery vehicle and ambulance.

The KIFV's welded aluminium armour is supplemented by a layer of spaced laminate steel. Power is provided by a German-made MAND-2848M diesel engine coupled to a UK Self-Changing Gears T-300automatic transmission. Daewoo is believed to have clinched the sale by committing itself to an offset package, details of which have yet to be finalized, that should see the company establish a diesel engine plant in Malaysia. Principal competition for the contract came from Turkey.

Malaysia's armoured vehicle requirement emerged in August when the country undertook to provide a battalion group to the UN operation in Bosnia. Rapid delivery was therefore a key factor in the purchase decision. The Malaysian contingent in Bosnia, which has already begun to deploy, comprises 1500 troops. Together with the KIFV, these troops will be equipped with 68 Condor 4 x 4 vehicles and two SIBMAS 6 x 6wheeled armoured vehicles to form two mechanized and two armoured companies plus combat support and service elements. Observers believe the army, which has seen budget priorities shift to the air force and navy, took advantage of the Bosnian commitment to fulfil a long-standing AFV requirement.

Sumber : JDW

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