The mass production of the first batch of Kaplan MT Modern Medium Weight Tanks (MMWT), developed jointly by FNSS, one of Turkey’s armored ground vehicle manufacturers, and Indonesian weapons industry company PT Pindad, has been completed and delivered to Indonesia. As a result, Turkey achieved its first tank export.
The delivery ceremony held at the FNSS facilities in Ankara’s Gölbaşı district was attended by the President of the Turkish Presidency of Defense Industry İsmail Demir, Indonesia’s Ambassador to Turkey Dr. Lalu Muhamad Iqbal, FNSS General Manager Nail Kurt, PT Pindad management, Indonesian Army and Ministry of Defense representatives.
İsmail Demir, speaking to the press after the ceremony, noted that the collaboration between the two companies has been ongoing for a long time and that, “the mass production of the product has begun, and deliveries will continue. Turkey is at a very good point in terms of armored vehicles and is assertive in this regard.” Demir stated that the cooperation model with Indonesia serves as an example, and that many more agreements on matters such as cooperation and exports would be reached in the near future. Demir also stated that new agreements will be signed one by one, and that Turkey’s export expansion will continue.
The KAPLAN MT project began with an interstate agreement signed in 2015 between the Presidency of Industry (SSB) and the Indonesian Ministry of Defense to address Indonesia’s need for a modern medium tank. Then, at the 2019 IDEF fair, FNSS and PT Pindad signed a contract for 18 tanks, which kicked off the serial production phase. The signed contract calls for the first ten tanks to be built in Turkey and the final eight tanks to be built in Indonesia.
The tank, known in Turkey as the Kaplan MT and in Indonesia as the Harimau, may be utilized in a variety of scenarios thanks to its modern ballistic and mine protection systems as well as a wide selection of weapons that can be used for infantry support as well as anti-tank engagement on the battlefield.
According to FNSS, the Kaplan MT has a 6-wheel suspension system with double-pin tracks and torsion shafts that provides it with mobility. It embodies the qualities of terrain adaptability and driving control, particularly in mountainous, rough terrain where main battle tanks will have difficulties entering and on roads with low-carrying-capacity bridges.
The Kaplan MT’s power pack includes a high capacity cooling unit as well as fuel tanks. The intelligent software that cools the cooling unit provides optimal torque efficiency and fuel savings, while two separate fuel tanks in the vehicle provide a minimum operating range of 450 kilometers. The backup power unit, on the other hand, charges the battery system and allows the vehicle’s tower to be used when the engine is not running.
The Kaplan MT has day and thermal cameras for the driver, a multi-functional digital driver dashboard, and a third generation high performance sight system for the gunner and commander. Additionally, a Battlefield Management System (BMS) and a Laser Warning System (LWS) are available to provide the crew with tactical and situational awareness. The CMI Cockerill 3105 turret, which houses a high-pressure 105mm Cockerill gun and an advanced autoloader, provides the vehicle’s firepower. In addition to the main gun, the platform has a coaxial 7.62×51mm machine gun.