KUALA LUMPUR: THE Army would like to proceed with the upgrade programmes for its fleet of Condor APC and Scorpion light tanks, according to its chief Jen Raja Affandi Raja Mohamed Nor today. He said the upgrade work will proceed once the Army is satisfied with the work done on the prototype vehicles.
“Once the review is completed and we are satisfied with the work done for the vehicles, we will proceed with the project,” he said when met at the Deftech showcase on the first day of DSA 2016 here today. Asked whether the Condor upgrade project will involved some 300 vehicles, Raja Affandi said “probably more than that”. He did not elaborate however. The Army originally procured 469 Condors back in the 80s.
Raja Affandi said by upgrading the Condors and Scorpions, the Army will be saving millions of ringgit for the Government. Upgrades to the Condor include installing a new 215hp Deutz diesel engine, new drop box, independent axle, and an automatic transmission. Other changes include new hydraulic, air conditioning, steering and vision systems.
A new military standard digital system will allow for the installation of new driving and navigational aids. To complete the upgrade, the vehicle will be fitted with new wiring. The old turret will be replaced with open top ACAV-style electrically powered turret. Some of the Condors will be fitted with the Dillon Aero M134 mini-gun.
“Yes some people might not like me for not buying new vehicles but…” he added. Raja Affandi said some of the Condors will also be converted as logistic vehicles to carry supplies or ammunition for the mechanised or armoured regiments.
“The Pendekar, Gempita and Condor units need re-supply vehicles that can keep up with their formations so some of the upgraded Condors will have a flat bed so they can be used to carry equipment and other items.
As for the Scorpion upgrade, Raja Affandi pointed out that most of the work was being carried out by the Army’s Kor Jurutera Letrik dan Jentera Di Raja, together with a local company Kembara Suci Sdn Bhd.
He said replacing the 90mm gun on the Scorpion was a good one “to correct the mistakes done in the past”.
Asked whether the upgrades will spell the end of the Sibmas and Stormer APCs still in service, Raja Affandi replied in the negative adding that the vehicles will also undergo upgrades once the Condor and Scorpion projects were completed.
Meanwhile, the Deftech AV4 will from now on be called Lipanbara. The new name was launched by the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak this afternoon.
Meanwhile, Destini Bhd displayed in public for the first time a model of the New Generation Patrol Craft (NGPC) which its subsidiary, Destini Shipbuilding and Engineering Sdn Bhd is building. DES is building six NGPC under a contract worth RM381.3 million for the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency.
Destini Armada Sdn Bhd chief executive Alastair J Bisset said the model was a good representation of the NGPC being built at the Destini shipyard at Port Klang. The boats will be armed with Aselsan 30mm RWS with two .50 calibre mounting aft behind the bridge.
Apart from patrol, the NGPC will also be tasked pollution control, fire fighting and search and rescue.
Bisset said the Fulmar UAS supplied with the NGPC will be launched from a deck just aft of the 30mm gun. It will be recovered using nets to be placed on the aft upper deck just behind the bridge. The UAS recovery net is not shown on the model.
As Malaysian Defence had reported previously the 44-metre NGPC design is derived from Fassmer 40m coastal patrol vessel project.
Bisset said the first vessel is expected to be launched by 2017 and commissioned in the same year.
Meanwhile, Destini -which is also the agent for the Spanish Uro Vamtac 4X4 vehicle, displayed the latest variant, the ST5 complete with the Thales RapidRanger turret.
During the preview day, four Starstreak missile removable launchers were fitted on the turret. However, on the first day the launchers were removed for unknown reason.
Just across from the Destini booth is where the Weststar booth is located. As reported previously, Weststar’s subsidiary, Global Komited Sdn Bhd won the contract to supply the ForceShield, the Thales integrated Advanced Air Defence system.
In addition to the Starstreak missiles, the system comprises ControlMaster 200 radar and weapon coordination systems, RapidRanger and RapidRover mobile weapon systems and the Next Generation Lightweight Multiple Launcher, as well as associated communications.
Although the RapidRanger turret had been integrated onto the Uro Vamtac, Global Komited reportedly will be integrating the same turret on its Toyota-based 4X4 vehicle, the GK-M1 Weapon Platform.
Industry sources told Malaysian Defence that while the RapidRover will be integrated on the GK-M1, the RapidRanger will be supplied with the ST5 version of the Vamtac.
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