Indian Army Gets Going On New Future Tank Platform

Issue: 5 / 2015 October 12, 2015 By SP's Special Correspondent Photo(s): By Indian Army

Post its major announcement that has had major repercussions for the armoured fleet -- the Indian Army had revealed in August that it is planning to design and develop a new generation, state-of-the-art combat vehicle platform for populating its Armoured Fighting Vehicle fleet in the coming decade -- a huge amount of industrial interest has become visible from India's private sector. This vehicle, the Army says, will be called the Future Ready Combat Vehicle (FRCV), and will form the base platform for the Main Battle Tank (MBT) planned to replace the existing T-72 tanks in the Armoured Corps. It is also planned to subsequently develop other need-based variants on this platform, which would presumably include bridge-laying vehicles, autonomous self-propelled tracked artillery, independent troop carriers etc. The Indian Army reveals that it wants to induct a vehicle within the next 10 years, that is, by 2025-27. "This fighting vehicle needs to be developed on a modular concept as part of a family of combat vehicles. The Tracked Main Battle Tank will be the primary/base variant," the Army says in its announcement. "A 'Future' Combat Platform design must cater for 'future' battlefield environment and technological possibilities," the Army says. To address the future battlefield scenario and the envisaged force profile in the coming years, the FRCV needs to be developed on a modular concept with a high degree of flexibility in a manner that, as a tank platform, it can address the varying requirements of different terrain configurations. At the same time it can provide the base on which a 'Family of Vehicles', catering to the operational needs of various arms of the Army, can be developed. Following its experiences with the T-90 and Arjun platforms, the Army wishes to imbue lessons with its next concept platform.