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New Russian batch of up-armored BMP-3s likely headed to Ukraine

According to Russian sources on September 7, 2023, PJSC Kurganmashzavod, a subsidiary of Rostec, has recently supplied a shipment of BMP-3 infantry fighting vehicles to the Russian Ministry of Defense, which will be likely headed to Ukraine. This shipment includes both newly manufactured BMP-3 units and those that have undergone significant overhauls to maintain operational capability. Each BMP-3 unit now comes equipped with additional protection kits (ADS), consisting of anti-cumulative grilles and specialized armored screens.
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Uparmored BMP-3 equipped with an additional protection kit at Army-2020 (Picture source Vitaly Kuzmin)

According to Russian sources, these additional protection kits have now become standard equipment for BMP-3 units, replacing the previous practice of separate supply and installation based on operational needs. This change aims to ensure that newly produced BMP-3 vehicles are adequately prepared to counter the various threats faced in the Ukrainian conflict zone, where Russia has reportedly lost 279 BMP-3s, according to open-source intelligence (OSINT) sources.

Production figures for BMP-3 infantry fighting vehicles (IFVs) and additional protection kits for the year 2023 indicate substantial increases. Over the initial eight months of the year, Kurganmashzavod's production output, including BMP-3 units, has exceeded the total volume for the entire year of 2022 by 120%. Simultaneously, the production of additional protection kits (ADS) for the BMP-3 has seen a significant surge, with output now 30 times higher compared to the previous year.

The BMP-3 remains a significant component of Russia's military inventory, armed with various weaponry, including a 100 mm cannon, a 30 mm automatic cannon, and a 7.62 mm machine gun. It features advanced fire control systems and night vision capabilities for precise targeting.

Constructed with a welded aluminum alloy, the BMP-3 provides protection against small arms and shell fragments while striking a balance between mobility and defense, with a weight of 18,700 kg.

The vehicle's mobility allows it to reach speeds of up to 70 km/h on roads and 10 km/h in water, thanks to its amphibious capability. Designed to accommodate a crew of three and up to seven infantry soldiers, the BMP-3 facilitates troop transport. Its compact yet spacious interior can be adapted to meet mission requirements, with dimensions measuring 7.14 m in length, 3.23 m in width, and 2.65 m in height.

With a range of 600 km, the BMP-3 demonstrates endurance and the ability to operate over extended distances, reducing the need for frequent refueling. Its versatility and reliability make it a valuable asset for Russia's military operations, particularly in various missions and defense scenarios.


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