The VT4 main battle tank (Chinese: VT-4主战坦克 ), also known as the MBT3000, is a Chinese third generation main battle tank built by Norinco for overseas export. It is an upgraded variant of the MBT2000 (VT-1) and the latest tank model from the Type 90-II tank family.
The MBT-3000 (industrial designation) project began development in 2009 as a cooperation of First Inner Mongolia Machinery Factory and other companies. It was based on the Type 90-II and outfitted with a locally produced powerplant. The MBT-3000 concept debuted at the 2012 Eurosatory. The tank was subsequently shown at the 2014 Norinco Armor Day and the tenth China International Aviation & Aerospace Exhibition as the VT-4. It has yet to enter mass production.
Production of VT-4 (MBT-3000) for the Royal Thai Army: Here
It is claimed that the video depicts the production of VT-4 (MBT-3000) for the Royal Thai Army.
1st VT-4 MBTs have been delivered to the Royal Thai Army: Here
The first batch of 28 VT4 tanks bought for 4.9 billion baht from China has arrived in Thailand, according to the army.
They were transported by 12 ships to the Royal Thai Navy’s Thung Prong port in Chon Buri’s Sattahip district on Monday, where they were ferried further to the Royal Thai Army Cavalry Centre at Adisorn military camp in Saraburi for inspection by an army-installed panel.
Thailand start testing VT-4 MBT – Video: Here
The Main Battle Tank MBT3000, also known as VT4 is a third generation main battle tank currently under development by Norinco.
The tank armed with a 125-mm smoothbore gun, which can fire various shells including:
- kinetic energy penetrator
- high explosive squash head
- high explosive anti-tank warhead
In addition, the main gun can fire anti-tank missiles with a maximum range of 5,000 m. The MBT3000 can carry 38 rounds of main ammunition with a maximum loading speed of 8 rounds per minute with 22 rounds on the autoloader.
The tank’s fire-control system includes a digital imaging system that consists of a second generation cooled thermographic imager for the gunner and the tank commander.
The MBT3000 has a remotely operated 12.7-mm anti-aircraft machine gun and a 7.62-mm coaxial machine gun.
New active protection system designated the GL5
Red Shield 2 active protection system for main battle tanks and armoured vehicles is a fully automatic, intelligent active protection system. It is comprised of detection devices, missile-interception equipment and launcher. It is intended to realize active protection for main battle tanks and armoured vehicles to effectively intercept anti-tank missiles, RPGs so as to improve greatly the field survivability. It is also adopted as the last phase protection means for high-value facilities such as communication station, missile launching well and command center, etc.
- Automatic working function: When the Red Shield 2 is switched on, it is able to perform the whole process of target detection, information processing, intercept projectile launch, target destruction automatically, without human interference
- Real-time target detection : Red Shield 2 is able to search target within a distance of 100m. When target is acquired, it starts to track it automatically and measures the speed, distance, angle of targets accurately
- Fire control and trajectory resolution: Red Shield 2 establishes target trajectory with real-time target data acquired, thus calculates target projectile encounter position and resolves the fire control parameters and generates ignition order to intercept projectile so that realize launch of projectile at right time to intercept the target
- Real-time interception: It is able to damage, destruct or detonate the incoming targets effectively at a distance of 10m±1.5m
- Operating mode: Automatic, intelligent, all-time and 3-dimensional protection
- Target type: Anti-tank missile, RPG
- Target detection range: >100m
- Target intercept range: 10m
- Protection area: 360°, 3-dimensional
- Length of whole system: <400 mm
- Number of tubes: 12
IDEX 2017: Chinese VT4 – Show debut- Jane’s
Latest pictures from Zhuhai Air Show 2016
Analysis of MBT-3000 vs OPLOT protection level: Here
The MBT3000 has a water-cooled turbocharger electronic-controlled 1,300 hp (969 kW) diesel engine. The MBT3000 has a cruise speed of 68 km/h and has an operational range of 500 km. The tank uses digital technology with an inertial navigation system and Global Positioning System. The tanks ford depth is 4.5 m and it has a trench of 2.7 m. Source army-guide.com
|Rated speed (r.p.m.)||
|Engine power output (h.p.)||
The MBT-3000 is a recent Chinese main battle tank, developed specially for export. It is also referred as VT-4. It is being marketed by NORINCO. It is an improved version of VT1A. The MBT-3000 is similar to the Type 99G which is currently in service with the PLA, but has downgraded capabilities such as sights, propulsion and gun. A model of this MBT was publicly presented in 2012. First pictures of this new tank appeared in 2013. It seems that the MBT-300 was proposed for Pakistan as an Al Khalid Mk.2.
|Al Khalid specifications|
|Dimensions :||10 x 3.5 x 2.40 m (33 x 11.5 x 7.9 fts)|
|Total weight, battle ready||46 tons (92,000 lbs)|
|Crew||3 (commander, driver, gunner).|
|Propulsion||KMDB 6TD-2 6-cylinder diesel 1,200 hp (890 kW)|
|Transmission||SESM ESM500 5-speed automatic|
|Top speed||72 km/h (45 mph)|
|Range/consumption||500 km (310.6 mi)|
|Armament||One 125 mm Sb (4.7 in) gun
One coaxial 7.62 mm (0.3 in) machine-gun
One cupola mounted AA 12.7 mm (0.5 in) machine-gun
|Armor||Classified Composites RHA, ERA|
|Ammunition used||APFSDS, HEAT-FS, HE-FS|
Al Khalid Source tanks-encyclopedia.com
This tank is not an entirely new design. It owns its existence to the Soviet T-72 of the Cold War era which has been around for over 30 years. The T-72 proved to be reliable but not too effective in combat. In the 1980s China obtained this tank from Romania and cloned it. The MBT-3000 is the culmination of decades of fine-tuning many tank systems that have been of Soviet origin. Also this tank shows some Western influence in its design. A number of improvements over the previous Chinese designs is substantial, however none of them greatly improved tank’s performance.
The MBT-3000 is armed with a fully-stabilized 125-mm smoothbore gun. The gun is fed by an automatic carousel-type loader. The autoloader reduces the tank crew to three and allow to reduce dimensions of the vehicle. Both the gun and autoloader were copied from the Soviet T-72. Loading speed is 8 rounds per minute. This tank fires APFSDS, HEAT and HE/HEF rounds. It is also compatible with gun-launched anti-tank guided missiles.
Russian 9K119 Refleks (AT-11 Sniper) missiles
These are Russian 9K119 Refleks (AT-11 Sniper) missiles, produced in China under license. Missiles are launched in the same manner as ordinary munitions. Missiles have a maximum range of 5,000 m. Typically four missiles are carried. This anti-tank guided missile capability is not common in Western designs. A total of 38 rounds are carried for the main gun. 22 of them are loaded into the autoloader and are ready to use. Other rounds are stored inside the hull.
This machine is also fitted with passive countermeasures system. It links laser threat warning receiver with smoke grenade launching. It reduces the chance of being hit by enemy anti-tank guided weapons.
Laser threat warning receiver
The MBT-3000 is armed with a fully-stabilized 125 mm smoothbore gun. The gun is fed by an automatic carousel-type loader. The autoloader reduces the tank crew to three and allow to reduce dimensions of the vehicle. Both the gun and autoloader were copied from the Soviet T-72. Loading speed is 8 rounds per minute.
125 mm smoothbore gun
This tank fires APFSDS, HEAT and HE/HEF rounds. It is also compatible with gun-launched anti-tank guided missiles. These are Russian 9K119 Refleks (AT-11 Sniper) missiles, produced in China under license. Missiles are launched in the same manner as ordinary munitions. Missiles have a maximum range of 5 000 m. Typically four missiles are carried. This anti-tank guided missile capability is not common in Western designs. A total of 38 rounds are carried for the main gun. 22 of them are loaded into the autoloader and are ready to use. Other rounds are stored inside the hull.
There is also a coaxial 7.62 mm machine gun. Also the is a roof-mounted 12.7 mm machine gun. Initially it was manually operated by the vehicle commander. Later it became remotely controlled from inside of the tank. So the tank commander no longer has to expose himself to enemy fire.
12.7 mm machine gun
The tank is fully digitalized and is fitted with a battlefield management system. Gunner and commander use a second-generation cooled thermal imagers. It seems that these sights were jointly developed with ASELSAN of Turkey. Fire control system has a hunter-killer capability. This tank can fire accurately on the move. Vehicle is also fitted with a GPS navigation system.
The MBT-3000 has a crew of three, including commander, gunner and driver.
Generic Gun Director
|Type: Visual||Altitude Max: 0 m|
|Range Max: 46.3 km||Altitude Min: 0 m|
|Range Min: 0 km||Generation: LLTV, 2nd Generation (1980s/1990s)|
|Properties: Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) [Side Info], Classification [Class Info] / Brilliant Weapon [Automatic Target Aquisition], Continous Tracking Capability [Visual], LLTV / NVG / CCD (Night-Capable) / Searchlight [Visual Night-Capable]|
Generic Laser Rangefinder for Gun Director
|Sensors / EW:|
|Generic Gun Director [LLTV] – (2nd Gen, Surface Only, 8x Magnification) Visual
Role: LLTV, Weapon Director
Max Range: 46.3 km
|Type: Laser Rangefinder||Altitude Max: 0 m|
|Range Max: 7.4 km||Altitude Min: 0 m|
|Range Min: 0 km||Generation: Not Applicable (N/A)|
|Sensors / EW:|
|Generic Laser Rangefinder for Gun Director – (Surface Only) Laser Rangefinder
Role: Laser Rangefinder for Weapon Director
Max Range: 7.4 km
It is claimed that this main battle tank is fitted with an indigenous turbocharged diesel engine, developing 1 300 hp. However it might actually be of Ukrainian origin. It is worth mentioning that the Chinese Army Type 99G is powered by a more powerful engine, developing 1 500 hp and based on a German design. Some sources report that the MBT-3000 might be also fitted with a more powerful diesel, developing 1 500 hp. Engine is mated to an automatic gearbox. This MBT has a deep fording capability. Auxiliary fuel tanks can be fitted for extended range. Source military-today.com
|Main weapon caliber (mm)||
|Auxiliary gun calibre (mm)||
|AA gun caliber (mm)||
|Ammunition of the main gun||
|Ammunition in the autoloader||
|Fording depth (mm)||
|Engine power output (h.p.)||
|Max. road speed (km/h)||
|Max. road range (km)||
|Vertical obstacle (mm)||
|Side slope (%)||
|Ground pressure (kg/sm2)||
|Operating temperature, max (degree, C)||
|Operating temperature, min (degree, C)||
|Length of track on ground (mm)||
|Max. road range (km)||
|Rate of fire (rds/min)||
|Ammunition of the auxiliary gun||
|Ammunition of AA gun||
|Number of smoke grenade launchers||
|Number of forward gears||
|Number of reverse gears||
|Fuel capacity (l)||
Main material source military-today.com
Updated Jan 28, 2018