Mo­bil­ity De­vel­op­ments in the Philip­pine Army

SP's LandForces - - REGIONAL / SOUTHEAST ASIA -

Over the years the Philip­pine Army has ac­quired a some­what di­verse se­lec­tion of ar­moured ve­hi­cles. Now as a part of its mod­erni­sa­tion ef­forts it is look­ing to bring into ser­vice new ca­pa­bil­i­ties, while ra­tio­nal­is­ing its legacy ve­hi­cle fleet as far as pos­si­ble.

The US ‘Ex­cess De­fense Ar­ti­cles (EDA)’ pro­gramme al­lowed the Philip­pine Army to ac­quire 114 M113A2 ve­hi­cles from US stocks with de­liv­er­ies from 2012 on­wards. An­other ac­qui­si­tion saw the Philip­pine Army ac­quire 28 more M113A2 ve­hi­cles, which El­bit will up­grade un­der the terms of a $19.7 mil­lion con­tract. This will re­sult in 14 Fire Sup­port Ve­hi­cles (FSV) that will be equipped with a Scor­pion tank tur­ret mount­ing a 76mm gun. Four of the M113A2 will be equipped a 25 mm can­non mounted in an El­bit Re­mote Con­trol Weapon Sta­tion (RCWS), six will have an RCWS mount­ing a 12.7mm ma­chine gun and four will be con­fig­ured as ar­moured re­cov­ery ve­hi­cles (ARV). All 142 of these M113A2 ve­hi­cles will be taken into ser­vice with the Mech­a­nised In­fantry Di­vi­sion of the Philip­pine Army.

Legacy ar­mour as­sets in­clude the sur­vivors of the 120 M113A1 ve­hi­cles ac­quired from 1967 on­wards. In the late 1970s a de­riv­a­tive of the M113 in the form of 51 FMC AIFV was ac­quired, 32 of these ve­hi­cles had a tur­ret-mounted 25mm can­non, 13 had a cupola-mounted 12.7mm ma­chine gun and six were ARV vari­ants. More re­cently in 2010 Turk­ish com­pany FNSS de­liv­ered six ACV-300 APCs (with a cupola-mount 12.7mm ma­chine gun) and an ACV-300 ARV, the ACV-300 is it­self a de­vel­op­ment of the FMC AIFV de­sign.

In terms of wheeled ar­moured ve­hi­cles, the GKN Simba, Cadil­lac Gage V-150/V-150S Com­mando and the Bravia Chaimite were all ac­quired in rea­son­able num­bers, but many have been lost in op­er­a­tions and even­tu­ally new gen­er­a­tion of wheeled ar­mour will be re­quired. Ar­moured ver­sions of AM Gen­eral HMMWV are also in ser­vice in the M1025 and M1114 ver­sions. Fi­nally we should men­tion the fact that the Philip­pines ac­quit­ted some 45 Scor­pion light tanks in the late 1970s, many of these were lost in com­bat. Oth­ers had their tur­rets re­moved to cre­ate M113 FSV sys­tems, the El­bit con­tract is not the first time that the Philip­pine Army has ac­quired FSVs in this man­ner.

The Philip­pine Army re­ceived its first M113A1 ar­moured ve­hi­cles in 1967, ac­quir­ing a to­tal of some 120 units

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