Initial Operational Capability (IOC):
Also Known As: Bakhcha-U
KBP, Kurganmashzavod and VgTZ
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Description: BMD is a family of light tracked armored vehicles designed to meet the requirements of Soviet airborne troops. These vehicles are amphibious and are equipped with NBC protection and night vision system as well as a turret-mounted gun and missile system. BMD vehicles provide fire support and mobility to airborne units. Its adjustable suspension system allows to change the vehicle's height thus cushion it better for airdrop. A single Il-76 transport aircraft is able to carry up to three BMDs.
Based on the BMP-1 armored vehicle BMD-1 was fielded with the Soviet Army in 1970. BMD-1 was followed by BMD-2. The BMD-3 was the last development made in the former Soviet Union and fielded in 1992 by the Russian Army. The BMD-4 is the last member of the BMD family. BMDs saw combat for the first time during the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979. BMD infantry fighting vehicle chassis has been the basis for further developments such as command post and mortar carrier vehicle.
The BMD-4, also referred to as Bakhcha-U, is a light armored fighting vehicle intended to provide fire support to paratroopers. It is most enhanced version of the BMD vehicle family produced to date and features an overwhelming firepower for a vehicle in its class. The BMD-4 can perform in support of defensive and offensive operations autonomously or in conjunction with other armored vehicles. Series production started in 2006 at VgTZ facilities in Volgograd, Russia. The Russian Airborne Assault Forces requirement was for 200 BMD-4 armored vehicles but these plans were dropped in favor of the upgraded BMD-4M to enter service by the end of 2013.
The BMD-4 is powered by a multi-fuel engine which provides a top speed of 70 kph and a maximum range of 500 km. The vehicle has a crew of two-man and can accommodate up to 5/6 fully equipped troops. The weapon system is based on the turret provided by KBP. The turret is equipped with a 100mm cannon, a 30mm 2A42 gun, Konkurs and Arkan anti-armor missiles, an AGS-17 grenade launcher, a 7.62mm PKT machine gun, and a 5.45mm RPKS-74 machine gun.
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