Bahrain has launched talks with India to procure Arjun Mk II main battle tanks


According to information published by the "Tactical Report" on March 16, 2022, Bahrain has launched talks with India for the procurement of the Indian-made Arjun Mk II Main Battle Tank (MBT). The tank could be also equipped with Israeli-Indian co-designed laser system.
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Indian-made Arjun Mk II MBT Main Battle Tank in a live demonstration at DefExpo defense exhibition in India.  (Picture source Army Recognition)


Currently, the Bahrain armed forces have a total of 180 American-made M60A3. In 2017, the Italian company Leonardo has proposed an upgrade of the M60A3 used by the Bahrain army fitted with a new 120 mm main gun, a new state-of-the-art fire control system as well as a new armor package. 

The Arjun Mk II is an enhanced variant of the first version of the Arjun MBT (Main Battle Tank). It was unveiled for the first time to the public during a military parade for the National Day in New Delhi on 26 January 2014.

The main armament of the Arjun Mk II main battle tank consists of a 120mm rifled gun fitted with a thermal sleeve, fume extractor, and a muzzle reference system. The gun is able to fire a full range of ammunitions including FSAPDS (Fin Stabilized Armor Piercing Discarding Sabot), HESH (High-Explosive Squash Head), PCB, TB, and the Israeli Laser Homing Anti-Tank (LAHAT) missile. Laser Homing Attack Missile, or LAHAT, is an advanced missile developed and manufactured by the MBT Division of Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI).

In terms of protection, the hull and the turret of the Arjun Mk II have a new design and are fitted with new ERA (Explosive Reactive Armor) protection which seems to be designed based on Russian Kontakt-5 technology which is mounted on the T-90 and some other Russian main battle tanks.

The design of the Arjun Mk II is conventional with the driver at the front of the hull, turret in the middle with gunner, commander and loader, and engine compartment at the rear. The tank is motorized with a German 10 cylinder, V-90 turbocharged, charge-cooled, water-cooled diesel engine developing 1030 kW at 2,400 rpm. It can run at a maximum road speed of 58 km/h and 40 km/h in cross country with a maximum cruising range of 500 km.

The Arjun Mk-II is also equipped with the latest generation of optics and firing control system including advanced thermal imaging and panoramic sights offering hunter-killer capability. The gunner sight is fitted with an automatic target tracker which greatly enhances the speed and accurate target engagement capability of the tank. To increase the self-protection of the Arjun Mk-II, a laser warning and countermeasure system (ALWACS) developed in collaboration with the Israeli Company Elbit Systems is mounted on each side of the turret.


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