K2NO Main Battle Tank proposal from South Korea Hyundai Rotem for Norwegian army
The Republic of Korea Armed Forces Facebook account publishes new pictures about the K2NO Black Panther Main Battle Tank being offered for the Norwegian Army by the South Korean company Hyundai Rotem. The K2NO was promoted by the South Korean Company Hyundai Rotem during the ADEX 2021 defense exhibition in South Korea.
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The K2NO main battle tank is developed by the South Korean company Hyundai Rotem for the Norwegian army. (Picture source Facebook Republic of Korea Armed Forces)
In November 2020, Army Recognition has reported that Norway plans to present a tank purchase project for a new main battle tank to the Norwegian parliament for approval in 2021. So far, it has already selected two possible contenders, after having evaluated up to nine options, the last of which were to acquire new platforms or upgrade the current fleet of Leopard 2A4 tanks currently operated by the Norwegian army has. Two candidates are shortlisted which include the South Korean K-2 Black Panther tank and the German Leopard 2A7. The winner should arrive in 2025.
The K2NO uses the same tracked chassis as the standard K2 Black Panther Main Battle Tank, but the turret has been modified according to specific requirements of the Norwegian armed forces. The front turret of the original K2 MBT is fitted with a millimeter band radar system able to operate a Missile Approach Warning System (MAWS) similar to an APS (Active Protection system). The K2NO is equipped with the Trophy APS with radar antennas mounted on each side at the front of the turret. The trophy is a military active protection system (APS) designed by the Israeli company Rafael to protect combat vehicles from ATGMs (Anti-Tank Guided Missile), RPGs (Rocket Propelled Grenades, anti-tank rockets, and tank HEAT (High-explosive Anti-Tank) rounds.
For the K2NO, the roof of the turret is fitted with a remotely operated weapon station from the Norwegian company Kongsberg which is armed with a 12.7mm heavy machine gun.
The hull of the K2NO seems very similar to the K2 with armor that provides protection at the front against 120 mm tank rounds. The upper part of the suspension is protected by armor plates. The tank uses both modular composite armor and Explosive Reactive Armor (ERA) blocks which are mounted on the side of the turret.
The K2 is motorized with an MTU MT-883 Ka-501 4-cycle, 12-cylinder water-cooled diesel engine coupled to an automatic transmission. The tank can reach a maximum road speed of 70 km/h with a maximum cruising range of 450 km. The suspension on each side consists of six dual rubber-tired road wheels, track-return rollers with the drive sprocket at the rear, and idler at the front.
The main armament of the K2 Black Panther includes a CN08 120 mm 55 caliber smoothbore gun indigenously developed by Agency for Defense Development and Hyundai Wia. The 120mm gun can fire about 10 rounds per minute. With a total supply of 40 various rounds, the Black Panther can rain hellfire on an enemy position for nearly three minutes before needing resupply. A total of 16 rounds are stored in the autoloader and 24 rounds are stored inside the hull.
South Korean K2 Main Battle Tank (Picture source Army Recognition)
South Korean K2NO main battle tank for the Norwegian army. (Picture source Facebook Republic of Korea Armed Forces)