Czech tracked Infantry Fighting Vehicle tender - answers by the Army

Czech tracked Infantry Fighting Vehicle tender - answers by the Army
06 / 06 / 2019, 10:00

In the past days the Czech Army's facebook profile offred a series of short posts bringing answers and arguments supporting the requirements for the new tracked Infantry Fighting Vehicles which created controversies and rised questions in the past months. We choose the most important aspects. From the tactical/technical point of view, two elements attract the general attention: the manned turret requirement, and the capacity of 11 soldiers (crew of 3 and 8 troopers). How does the Army explain these requirements?

The army needs 210 vehicles. Why? The army is committed to deploy a "heavy brigade" within the NATO forces, currently the 7th Mechanized Brigade, and needs to equip its three mechanized infantry battalions and one tank battalion (and support units). In this brigade, each of the mechanized battalions is to operate 56 vehicles.

See also: Czech Army’s Modernization Projects: the IFVs

The question of unmanned and manned turrets is widely discussed. One of the major reasons is that one of the competitors, the PSM, offers a vehicle which is only fitted with an unmanned turret: the Puma IFV. These Infantry Fighting Vehicles are being deployed by the German Bundeswehr. Manned turrets were also the Australian choice for the LAND 400 phase 3 program, and PSM does not take part in it. According to the Czech Army:

  • Soldiers must have a good situational awarness in urban areas.
  • Fast and precise orientation in the field.
  • They must easily identify the target.
  • They must have visual contact with the dismounted troopers.
  • They need to have the ability to conduct fire and observation even when power goes out.
  • They urgently need a simple design which reduces the likelihood of faults.
  • They want to be able to remove the fault from the inside and reload the weapon inside the vehicle. Why? Because the crew is protected, and does not have to reload out of its combat activity.

The "light brigade", the 4th Rapid Deployment Brigade, is equiped with the wheeled Infantry Fighting Vehicles Pandur II CZ with a remote weapon station. According to the Army, the manned turret is more suitable for its "heavy brigade", "because we need first-line vehicles in direct contact with the enemy. Because when it comes to seconds, a broken wiper or a slanted sensor can't stop us."

Sounds correct. But... does this mean the German or the Polish Army can be stopped by a broken wiper?

See also: Czech Infantry Fighting Vehicle Tender – manned or unmanned turrets?

The Army's choice was for a 30mm cannon. The reason is to unify the armament, as a cannon of the same caliber is mounted on the RWS of the Pandur II. The Army might eventually want to change the caliber in future. All producers offer this possibility with either the 35mm, 40mm or 50mm cannons.

The requirement of 11 soldiers carried by the IFV is not a new one; it has already been presented in June 2018, and possibly even before. The Army says:

  • Our expert teams have decided that in the modern fight we need to carry more specialists.
  • Artillery observers or Forward Air Controllers.
  • To control the drones and have an overview of the battlefield situation.

See also: Czech IFV tender - opposition against manned turrets requirement

A more detailed argument can be found in a very interesting article published by It reads:

"The Czech Army has been following the so-called "British Infantry School" since the 1990s; in this tatical school the focus lies on soldiers, while the vehicles are to support the soldiers, they are the means to resolve situations that the infantry cannot handle.

For example, in the German Bundeswehr, follows the opposite principle. Its focus lies on armoured vehicles, while the soldiers are seen as a complement to their actions. Among other things, the German Puma IFV is fitted with an unmanned turret (emphasis on technology) and the British Ajax IFV or the modernized Warrior IFV are mounted with a manned turret (emphasis on close cooperation with the infantry)."

We might also add that the new Polish tracked IFV, the Borsuk, currently under development, is also to be fitted with an unmanned turret. The Czech Heavy Brigade would maneuver within a Polish Armoured Division, but the Czech mechanized infantry follows a different tactical doctrine.

Among other important arguments the Army explains why it requires the producer to provide it with the license: to avoid lenghty repairs. The Army wants to have the servicing under control.

Tags of article

This website uses to provide services, personalize ads, and analyzing visitor cookies. By using this site you agree.More information