Weststar GK-M1 Weapon Platform

A row GK-M1 Weapon Platform ready to be delivered.

SHAH ALAM: IN my post What’s In Store For MAF in 2015 I mentioned about the talk of the Army getting new Light Strike Vehicles (LSV).

I also mentioned that apart from foreign candidates, Weststar GK-M1 Weapon Platform as one of the candidates of the LSV. It appears now that the Weststar GK-M1 may well be the LSV as the photographs posted in the Weststar Group webpage clearly shows.

A side view of the GK-M1 Weapon Platform
A side view of the GK-M1 Weapon Platform

The vehicles shown are all in the new Army digital camo for vehicles, and also spotted military registration numbers. The ones could be seen clearly are ZC3035 and ZC3036. Since the Gempita 8X8s for the 19th RMR carried ZC20… series one may assume that the ZC30.. series are mostly taken up by the Weststar Weapon Platform vehicles.

A frontal view of the GK-M1 Weapon Platform
A frontal view of the GK-M1 Weapon Platform

It appears that the Weapon Platform vehicles will be the added attraction at the Army’s 82nd anniversary parade on March 1 apart from the Gempita. I have nothing much on the vehicles itself apart that it appears to be un-armoured, militarised commercial vehicle.

The inside of the GK-M1 Weapon Platform
The inside of the GK-M1 Weapon Platform

From the pictures, one can surmised the vehicle is rather small, a four seater – perhaps in the size of the Kia Jeep, we used to have in the 80s and 90s. While the GK-M1 appears to be armed with a 50 calibre HMG, the Kia used to sport 106mm recoiless rifles.

Again from pictures alone, I believed the Weststar vehicles looked to be a suitable replacement for the Alvis 6X6 of the 10th Para Brigade. It looked light enough to be sling loaded by a helicopter and small enough to be driven directly into a C130 or A400M. I am guessing that at least five can be loaded into a Charlie and perhaps eight into A400M.

The engine bay of the GK-M1. It appears to be a Toyota diesel engine, probably similar to the one fitted on the Hilux.
The engine bay of the GK-M1. It appears to be a Toyota diesel engine, probably similar to the one fitted on the Hilux.

As for replacing the GGK’s LSVs, I am of the opinion that a slightly bigger vehicle with gun-mounting option like the Flyer below is more suitable.

flyer LSV armed with a 12.7mm Gatling gun
flyer LSV armed with a 12.7mm Gatling gun

Whatever one may think about the GK-M1 Weapon Platform, one must congratulate Weststar for at least showing their vehicles publicly.

A GM-K1 outside the paint shop, note the other vehicles around it.
A GM-K1 outside the paint shop, note the other vehicles around it.

Furthermore, it appears that the pictures were taken in a more creative style. This is in stark contrast with others which tried to hide their vehicles even in plain sight!.

— Malaysian Defence

.

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About Marhalim Abas 1163 Articles
Shah Alam

1 Comment

  1. azlan says:
    January 19, 2015 at 8:20 pm

    AM,

    In 1998 when the RN Lynx went down, the Sing government claimed that if the SAR Puma had been allowed to over fly our territory, it would have arrived minutes sooner.

    Another reason they want over flights is simply due air traffic congestion in their very limited airspace and the need for navigation training over land.
    AM says:
    January 19, 2015 at 3:36 pm

    “let’s stick to the main reason they want over flights – it is faster to get to training areas ”

    I find this unlikely because looking at the map of Singapore territorial limits and FIR, the time saved is miniscule. Singapore pilots are the least likely to go off and do something on their own.

    Therefore the overflight was done with higher approval and for a reason other than saving time.
    azlan says:
    January 19, 2015 at 11:02 am

    Ferret,

    Over flights could mean various things but let’s stick to the main reason they want over flights – it is faster to get to training areas and for SAR in the South China Sea if over flights over our air space is permitted. We also use to allow navigation training flights over our territory, they don’t have enough land (yes before Tomahawk mentions it, such training is conducted in other countries). If it’s for SIGINT/ELINT they don’t need over flights (e.g. the RSAF Fokker which would fly to Yangoon and snoop on our west coast whilst in international airspace).

    AM,

    Lol!!! I better get a good lawyer.
    Tomahawk says:
    January 19, 2015 at 10:50 am

    @ azlan

    It not tat u never get caught. Spies are usually deported quietly. And the other side will do same. Do u noe who r most actif or one of most aftiv spy agst one another…Commonwealth.
    Ferret says:
    January 19, 2015 at 8:54 am

    Azlan,

    Overflights are just that. It could be for training or spying (air recce, electronic eavesdropping, etc)
    AM says:
    January 18, 2015 at 11:17 pm

    Tomahawk: “We kick out some US officials last time becuz of spy activities

    You are referring to the case in the 60s. Lee Kuan Yew publicly said he had caught 2 US spies and would execute them if Singapore was not given $33M in aid. His remarks are public so look it up. It was a nationalistic stunt for the masses, given that Singapore was buying all the US arms it could afford at the time, designed to show he was his own man.

    Azlan,

    G*d will punish you all right… with a defamation suit, LOL!
    azlan says:
    January 18, 2015 at 8:59 pm

    Tomahawk,

    We may be doing the same but we never got caught! Also, we have other areas to watch out for apart from Singapore. What you said about us not publicly naming the country because of us doing the same thing makes zero sense.

    RedSot,

    What are you on about??? Even NATO countries spy on each other. It’s not so much our defences are weak but the fact that we are not as paranoid as certain city states. An since when does spying constitute harm; whatever are you smoking? Not sure what world you live in but in the real world even countries with excellent ties soy in each other.

    May good punish me for having the audacity to suggest that Singapore would ever do anything unbecoming!!!

    Ferret,

    Sounds well in principle but we don’t need to overly the island for training flights as unlike them we have ample airspace.
    Tomahawk says:
    January 18, 2015 at 1:40 pm

    “It was announced that we wouldn’t name the “neighbouring country” in the spirit of ASEAN solidarity but Huxley in his book mentions a Singapore intel operation to discover details of the arms MOU signed with Britain in 1988.”

    It not becuz of asean solidarity. it becuz u r doing same thing to us. Like marharlim say…all country spy. We kick out some US officials last time becuz of spy activities. it happen all the time.
    Ferret says:
    January 18, 2015 at 10:27 am

    I’m not sure if this has been done before but the problem of ‘intrusion’ by Singapore can be resolved by giving them overflight rights over certain areas and they can reciprocate by giving us the same rights, with the requisite prior notice of course. This will work wonders for ‘confidence-building’.

    The problem is a 10 nm overflight will see our jets over Keppel Harbour and a few RSAF bases which I don’t think they’re keen on. The politics on the Malaysian side will also work against overflights.

    Int ops against friends are a given — ask Uncle Sam and the Germans.

    In the 80’s incident, Singapore’s CoA said Malaysian PAT (CO of Singapore Bn when CoA was RSO) gave him a call to sort the matter out.

    It would be naive to assume nobody is spying. All the Asean nations are ‘areas of interest’ to us, some more so than others, and vice-versa. But don’t get caught.
    Lee Yoke Meng says:
    January 18, 2015 at 5:29 am

    Well indonesia has started to station F16s n sukhois in kalimantan due to ” intrusions by malaysia”.
    Anyway, the hmg is not meant as a close in weapon system. Its meant for heavy support fire like firing from one hill over to the next hill. So if need to assault a hill, just station a few hmg on another hill n let rip covering the advance. Cant go for long sustain fire though.
    RedSot says:
    January 18, 2015 at 12:32 am

    hey hey now u ar.accusing singapore bossom buddy close neighbour to spy on malaysia….i though some blogger did mention there is nothing going to happen since we dont benifits if both countries are at logger head sound contradicting…one moment some strongly say singapore will do no harm to malaysia intrest now iy says they ar spying….and i might say this is just a frely gesture by saying hi ur defence is weak

    Reply
    Everybody spy on each other lah…
    azlan says:
    January 17, 2015 at 9:38 pm

    Most of the intrusions from down south I believe are from UAVs and aircraft on training sorties (in the past Singapore admitted. – a extremely rare occurrence – that an F-5 had strayed into our air space due to bad weather).

    Do you remember the spy ring we uncovered in 1989 involving MAF
    people selling rahsia to a “neighbouring country”? A couple of MAF people and their handlers were arrested. It was announced that we wouldn’t name the “neighbouring country” in the spirit of ASEAN solidarity but Huxley in his book mentions a Singapore intel operation to discover details of the arms MOU signed with Britain in 1988.
    azlan says:
    January 17, 2015 at 8:17 pm

    Apart from having a new look, Perajurit has an article on RMAF ops in Sabah in its,January issue. There is mention of Hawks intercepting foreign planes in our air space which interestingly includes P-3s and P-8s. Marhalim, to the best of your knowledge, has MINDEF, the RMAF or the government ever publicly provided stats on foreign aircraft intercepted?

    Reply
    Not intercepted but intrusion mostly Singapore which the republic usually denied.
    H says:
    January 17, 2015 at 5:19 pm

    AM,
    Leaf is just fine at the rear. They are safe on express ways and in fact that’s the reason they shaved the cost. And you may want to revisit what are leaf, coil, independent and multi, they are not mutual exclusion.
    Ferret says:
    January 17, 2015 at 4:49 pm

    Azlan,

    “The Korean 4x4s, from what I was told, were very under powered”

    I was told the same thing, that’s why I was impressed but mind it was earth tracks in an estate, so the inclines were not very steep.

    …,

    “It does not mean that the engine runs on a fuel named “multifuel”. There is no such thing.”

    Correct. I was thinking more of working out the optimum proportions for the different fuel mixtures and that’s already been done.
    … says:
    January 17, 2015 at 3:22 pm

    @ azlan

    Its an ural 4320 crane truck as part of the support equipment of the MKM.

    http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Eqm5G6ER_MM/UQXluhC4gJI/AAAAAAAAVNg/klRumeP2KRA/s1600/URAL4320.jpg
    azlan says:
    January 17, 2015 at 11:05 am

    Does anyone have any pics of the
    Kamaz lorries the Russians threw in with the MKMs? I came across a pic some time back but didn’t save the link.

    Due to recent operational experience, fitting ballistic protection on our soft skin vehicles doesn’t seem to be a priority. No doubt, if we had lost several vehicles in Lahad Dato, the VAMTACs and other 4x4s would have some form on of protection. The Americans and Brits were reminded the hard way in Iraq.

    Reply
    Our Vamtacs are not armoured. The Kamaz trucks in Malaysian camo I saw on the Net are mostly photoshopped ones.
    AM says:
    January 16, 2015 at 11:39 pm

    Most of our light vehicles have no armour at all, not even the Vamtac and the speculated Hummers. But this is the first light vehicle with leaf suspension, which is unsafe for any kind of combat encounter. It is a big step down from our G wagons.
    nimitz says:
    January 16, 2015 at 11:23 pm

    Multifuel-engine. Usually 4WDs comes with diesel engine. Toyota diesel engines can operate with biodiesel B5, not sure if it can work with B10.
    irsa says:
    January 16, 2015 at 9:15 pm

    ATM should opt for a single model which can cater for various platform from troop carrier to assult version vehicle. Take vamtac for instance. This certainly ease the maintenance aspect and brand them as an official vehicle for ATM. Further more some vehicle doesn’t belong the service like the KIA van. Thank god there are MAXUS fleet which fit nicely. I am referring to the look and it size just to make it clear

    Reply
    They did that last time when they used Pajeros but people complained….
    azlan says:
    January 16, 2015 at 6:38 pm

    As I see it the main limitation is that if someone fires back the occupants have zero protection 🙂

    The Chadians didn’t have this problem as they were engaging targets from a distance with MILAN 1 and the Talibs used their Hiluxs more to move around than to fight from but in our case, with shorter engagement ranges due to terrain and vegetation, things could get unpleasant for the occupants of an unprotected 4×4.
    AM says:
    January 16, 2015 at 4:21 pm

    I have a major complaint against this Weststar truck. It has leaf springs! These are the least stable system of suspension around.

    At a minimum, this vehicle should be able to deploy across the country quickly, but the drivers will have to take it slow on the highway compared to with other suspensions.

    Yet as a weapons platform, there will be situations when it has to make tight turns at speed, which with leaf springs is seriously risking a rollover. Leaf springs are only used on old lorries or vans at the low end of the price range- notice how those roll in turns.

    The Hilux may have served some guerrillas well from a cost-benefit point of view, but we don’t know the limitations and more importantly the losses they suffered.

    Reply
    I took off your second last line, its Weststar, a separate company altogether.
    azlan says:
    January 16, 2015 at 12:57 pm

    The Hilux (or something like it) got a military name for itself when Chadian rebels in the 1980’s wreaked havoc on Libyan T-54/55s using MILAN 1. Later, the Taliban were able to run circles around their opponents using Hiluxs paid for by Saudi Arabia and bought in Pakistan.
    Hasnan says:
    January 16, 2015 at 11:20 am

    Something cheap and reliable to replace the land rovers I guess

    Moreover it has a gun
    … says:
    January 16, 2015 at 11:11 am

    @ azlan

    Reason for this maybe:

    – Easier spare parts (common with hilux)

    – Kasi makan kat orang lain pulak…

    Performance and capability wise surely the VAMTAC is better than this…
    … says:
    January 16, 2015 at 11:04 am

    @ ferret

    Multifuel engine

    – It does not mean that the engine runs on a fuel named “multifuel”. There is no such thing.

    – Multifuel engine is an engine that can run on diesel, kerosene, jet fuel, petrol or any mixture of that.

    To do a multifuel engine, you develop the engine, not the fuel.
    azlan says:
    January 16, 2015 at 10:41 am

    Ferret,

    The Korean 4x4s, from what I was told, were very under powered when fitted with the RCLs (Spanish supplied).

    Marhalim

    Apart from the fact that there is zero ballistic protection, even against small arms, I really have to ask why didn’t the army just go for additional VAMTACs to serve as “weapons carriers/platforms”? Apart from the politics involved, maybe they wanted a cheaper, smaller and narrower vehicle?

    Reply
    I am not sure the reason why. I am going to ask them the reason when I got the chance.
    Ferret says:
    January 16, 2015 at 10:03 am

    Marhalim,

    “The dashboard of the GK-M1 Weapon Platform. I guess they will never get loss now! ”

    Haha … good one.

    One of the things about the ‘Korean jeep’ that impressed me was its relative silence and its ability to climb hill tracks (oil palm plantation) while hefting an RCL.

    Somebody should start working on a multifuel-engined vehicle. I believe we have the expertise to develop those kinds of fuels already; the engine’s the problem.

    Whatever happened to Amdac?

    Reply
    They showed up at DSA 2012 with a modified French truck hoping to sell it to the Army. They were not at DSA 2014. I think they are still surviving selling spare parts to government agencies.
    … says:
    January 16, 2015 at 8:51 am

    It ia basically a very posh version of the toyota hilux technicals used by the somali’s and libyan’s

    A hilux chassis, engine, dashboard covered with a hummer-like cabin.

    If it can do the job as good as a plain hilux maybe that is good enough for the army I guess.
    … says:
    January 16, 2015 at 8:43 am

    The previous prototype pictures of this vehicle suggests that they are probably own built but the latest production version looks likely that it is based on this vehicle

    http://www.manager.co.th/asp-bin/Image.aspx?ID=2795301

    http://www.checkraka.com/uploaded/gallery/ea/ea9221882d4eb0e970f10fdcb6b486cb.jpg

    http://p3.isanook.com/au/0/ud/0/1938/hotnews-2-20-02-2011.jpg

    Reply
    I believe Weststar or its subsidiaries own manufacturing plants in Thailand, so perhaps yes…

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