|Type||Infantry fighting vehicle|
|Place of origin||United States|
|Wars||Yugoslav wars, anti-guerrilla operations in the Philippines, War in Afghanistan|
|Weight||13.6 metric tons (combat load)|
|Height||2.62 m (to turret roof)|
|Armor||Aluminium hull with spaced laminate steel appliqué armor on the front and sides|
|25 mm KBA-B02 cannon (180 rounds ready; 144 in reserve)|
|7.62×51mm NATO machine gun (230 rounds ready; 1,610 in reserve)|
|Engine||Detroit Diesel Allison 6V-53T
267 hp (195 kW) at 2800 rpm
|Suspension||Torsion bar in tube|
The AIFV (Armored Infantry Fighting Vehicle) is a tracked light armored vehicle that serves as an infantry fighting vehicle (IFV) in the armies of several countries. It is a development of the M113A1 armored personnel carrier.
In 1967, funded by the U.S. Army, the FMC corporation produced two prototype vehicles designated as XM765 - these were based on their experiences with the earlier XM701 vehicle, developed for the MICV-65 program. The XM765 was based on the M113A1, upgraded with an enclosed turret and firing ports, so that the infantry could fight from within the vehicle. The army evaluated the vehicle, but decided that they wanted a better protected and more mobile vehicle, selecting instead the M2 Bradley.
FMC continued development as a private venture, resulting in the product improved (PI) M113A1 in 1970. The PI M113A1 had the driver and engine at the front, with an enclosed weapon station in the center of the hull and the commander seated at the rear. This arrangement meant that the commander had a very poor forward view. FMC went back to the drawing board and came up with a new design, which had the driver on the front left of the hull and the commander seated behind him. To the right of the commander was a one-man turret. The vehicle would later be designated the AIFV (armored infantry fighting vehicle).
While the US was uninterested in the design, a number of other governments were interested in the vehicle, which was simpler, lighter, and cheaper than the Bradley. After a series of demonstrations and the delivery of four evaluation vehicles in 1974, the Netherlands government placed an order for 880 of the vehicles in 1975, which were designated YPR-765 when they entered service. Some changes were made at the request of the Dutch government, including shifting the weapon station to the right side and moving the commander behind the driver. The Netherlands ordered 2,079, of which 815 were produced locally under license. Under the YPR-2000 program, virtually all Dutch vehicles were upgraded to YPR-765A1 standard and are easily identified by the 3-tone NATO camouflage pattern[clarification needed]. During the war in Afghanistan, several vehicles were fitted with additional armour.
The Philippines also received 45 vehicles in 1979, these were intended to take 25mm cannons, although some were later modified to fit 12.7mm machine guns.
Turkey selected the AIFV in 1989, after a competition involving the Alvis Vickers Warrior IFV and United Defense LP Armoured Infantry Fighting Vehicle. The total value of the contract for 1,698 vehicles was US$1.076 billion. The first 285 hulls were produced in Belgium, the remaining vehicles were produced entirely in Turkey. A little way into the production run, with 200 vehicles completed, the Turkish AIFV specification was updated to include a more powerful power pack developing 300 horsepower, an Allison X-200-4 transmission and hydrostatic steering from the M113A3. During the production run, a number of changes were made to the armament of the vehicle, including different turret packages, and power packs.
The hull of the vehicle is made of welded aluminum, with spaced steel laminate armor bolted onto the side and front. The voids of the armor are filled with polyurethane foam, which gives the vehicle extra buoyancy when travelling in the water. Original production AIFV's can swim without deploying flotation curtains, using only a large front-mounted trim vane; they are propelled in the water by their tracks.
The engine sits on the front right of the hull, behind a hatch that can be used to remove the complete powerpack. The powerpack is similar to the M113A1, except for a larger radiator capacity and turbocharger. The transmission is also fitted with heavy duty components from the M548 tracked cargo carrier. Immediately to the left of the engine is the driver, above whom is a hatch that opens to the right. The driver has four M27 day periscopes. The driver's center periscope can be replaced by a passive infra-red periscope for night driving. The commander sits immediately behind the driver, and has a cupola that can be completely traversed. The cupola has five periscopes, four of which are M17 day periscopes, the fifth has 1x to 6x variable magnification.
The turret is fitted on the right side of the hull behind the engine. The turret, which has electro-hydraulic traverse, can elevate from -10 to +50° and can traverse and elevate at a speed of 60°/sec. The turret mounts an Oerlikon Contraves 25 mm KBA-B02 cannon with a dual ammunition feed and 180 rounds of ready use ammo, with another 144 rounds stored in the hull. Mounted to the left of this gun is a 7.62 mm FN MAG machine gun, which has 230 rounds of ready ammo, with a further 1,610 in the hull. There is a six-barrel smoke discharger mounted at the front, just above the large trim vane.
The troop compartment is at the rear of the hull; a large power operated ramp allows access through the rear of the vehicle, a door is also provided in the ramp. Additionally a single piece hatch covers the top of the troop compartment. The compartment contains seven troops in the Dutch variant, with six sitting back to back facing outwards and a single passenger sitting between the command and the turret facing backwards. There are two firing ports in each side of the hull and a single firing port in the rear. The side firing ports are provided with M17 periscopes, the rear one is fitted with a M27 periscope.
Dutch variants: (the pantser-rups designation means armoured-tracked)
The Philippine Army uses a mixed variant of earlier AIFVs similar to the Dutch YPR-765, and later variants from Turkey based on the ACV-300.
Note: all are ACV-350 and fitted with air-conditioning and an over-pressure NBC system.
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