M113AS4 is one of the most protected upgrades of the American M113 armored personnel carrier.
Australia continues to support Ukraine and supplies heavy weapons, in particular, official Canberra has already donated several M777 howitzers, Bushmaster armored vehicles, drones, ammunition and military equipment. And the other day it began to transfer armored personnel carriers M113AS4.
Total should do 14 M113AS4 units, the first four have already been sent to Ukraine on the Ukrainian An-124 aircraft.
Armored personnel carrier M113AS4
The Australian Armed Forces at one time actively exploited American tracked M113 armored personnel carriers, which in 2000 they had more than 500 units. But their characteristics ceased to suit the Ministry of Defense and a large-scale modernization program for this armored personnel carrier was launched.
The main task of these works was a significant increase in armor from both heavy machine guns and mines and land mines. Such an upgrade package should extend the possibility of efficient operation of the machine for years, so the implementation turned into a deep update of the entire machine, which was carried out by the German FFG (Flensburger Fahrzeugbau).
The fact is that the basic version of the M113 can only withstand the caliber of 7.62 mm, that is, only fire from small arms. And during the modernization, the task was to increase the level of protection immediately to the heaviest machine gun caliber – 14.5 mm. This was achieved by installing additional ceramic panels. Mine protection was also installed. In addition, the turret was replaced with a full-fledged electric turret designed for a machine gun. M2 caliber 12.7 mm.
All this significantly increased the load on the chassis, so the developers took a radical path and increased the body by 66 cm and added another roller. Thus, it was possible to prevent a critical load on the chassis, despite the fact that the weight of the machine increased from 12.3 tons to 18 tons.
Also, to maintain driving properties, the engine and transmission were replaced. The M113AS4 is equipped with a diesel MTU 6V199TE with 355 hp, which is 80 hp. stronger than the base power plant, which gave a power density of 19.7 hp. per ton.
This is the specific power that the M113A3 will have with additional ceramic panels, which are used, in particular, by the US Army. This additional armor increases the weight to 14 tons, but gives a lower level of protection, only from a 12.7 mm machine gun.
But it should be noted that the additional armor of the M113AS4 left this car without amphibious properties and the maximum ford that it overcomes is 1.6 meters.
As of 2021, the Australian Army had 431 M113AS4 units in service. Now we are talking about removing these vehicles from service and replacing them with infantry fighting vehicles. The main choice is between the latest Korean AS21 Redback and the German futuristic Lynx KF41. A real struggle has now unfolded between the companies, because an order for 450 combat vehicles with a total value of $ 18 billion is at stake.
armored personnel carrier M113AS4 – specifications
- The weight: 18 tons
- Crew: 2 people + 10 people landing
- Armament: 12.7 mm machine gun
- Engine power: 355 HP