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Ukrainian Soldiers Rank Swedish CV9040 IFVs Top Among Allied Combat Vehicle Donations

In the context of the ongoing international military assistance provided to Ukraine in its defense against Russian aggression since February 2022, the Swedish-made CV9040 Infantry Fighting Vehicle (IFV) has garnered high praise from Ukrainian soldiers. Recognized as a pivotal asset on the battlefield, the CV9040, also known as Strf 9040 in the Swedish army, stands out for its sophisticated design and robust capabilities.
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The CV9040 IFV (Infantry Fighting Vehicle) donated by Sweden is considered by Ukrainian soldiers to be one of the most efficient combat vehicles received from international allies. (Picture source Twitter)

The Swedish Ministry of Defense, on January 19, 2023, announced its third and most substantial military aid package to Ukraine, which notably includes the donation of CV90 tracked armored IFVs and ARCHER 155mm wheeled self-propelled howitzers. This support underscores Sweden's commitment to aiding Ukraine amidst the ongoing conflict.

The CV9040, known within the Swedish army as Strf 9040, epitomizes a pinnacle in infantry fighting vehicle (IFV) design, blending mobility, protection, and armament into a formidable platform. Developed in the late 1980s and officially entering service in 1993, the CV9040 was conceived to address the evolving requirements of modern warfare, emphasizing rapid maneuverability, robust protection, and versatile firepower. It boasts a powerful propulsion system and advanced suspension, enabling swift movement across challenging terrains and amphibious capabilities for water obstacles. This agility ensures that the CV9040 can swiftly respond to battlefield dynamics, supporting infantry with speed and efficiency. The CV9040 IFV is manufactured by BAE Systems Hägglunds, a subsidiary of the global defense, security, and aerospace company BAE Systems.

In terms of protection and firepower, the CV9040 is second to none, featuring cutting-edge armor and the innovative Barracuda camouflage system, significantly diminishing its thermal signature to evade enemy detection. Its armor withstands severe impacts from anti-tank rounds and explosives, safeguarding the crew and passengers. The armament of the CV9040 is particularly noteworthy; it is equipped with a 40mm Bofors autocannon, which provides a high rate of fire and the capability to engage a variety of targets, from enemy personnel to light armored vehicles. This main gun is complemented by 7.62 mm machine guns and the provision for anti-tank guided missiles, offering a comprehensive suite of weapons to tackle a wide range of combat scenarios. The vehicle's advanced fire control system enables it to acquire and engage targets with remarkable accuracy, enhancing its lethality on the battlefield. Together, these characteristics ensure that the CV9040 remains a critical component of Sweden's military capabilities, reflecting the nation's commitment to maintaining a sophisticated and effective defense force.

Ukrainian soldiers have lauded the CV90 as the premier anti-tank vehicle within their armed forces. One of the vehicle's most celebrated features is the Barracuda camouflage system, which significantly reduces its visibility to thermal imaging systems by 70%, making it appear merely as a "gray, padded cold car" on screens. This stealth capability, coupled with enhanced internal insulation, greatly contributes to both the survivability and comfort of its crew.

Despite its many advantages, the CV90's ammunition capacity has been noted as a limitation. Equipped with three cartridges holding eight rounds each, the vehicle's commanders express a desire for increased ammunition storage to improve sustained engagement capabilities. Nonetheless, the rapid reload time of approximately one to two minutes is viewed positively.

The vehicle's resilience against heavy firepower is another key strength highlighted by Ukrainian military personnel. The CV9040 has demonstrated the ability to withstand direct hits from various projectiles, including Lancets, FPVs, and 120 mm shells, attesting to its superior armor protection. Instances where the vehicle faced aggressive assaults from multiple T-90 tanks without succumbing to the attacks further illustrate its robustness.

A notable mention is the safety of the vehicle's ammunition storage. In situations where the turret was hit, the ammunition did not detonate; instead, the propellant simply burned out, mitigating the risk of internal explosions and enhancing crew safety.

Beyond its combat effectiveness, the CV90 is praised for its operational comfort and maneuverability. Described as a "tractor" by its crew, the vehicle offers amenities such as air conditioning and a radio, contributing to a more conducive environment for its operators.

The collective feedback from the Ukrainian military underscores the CV90's critical role in enhancing their defensive and offensive capabilities. As the conflict continues, the performance and resilience of such advanced military equipment remain vital to Ukraine's efforts to repel Russian aggression and secure its sovereignty.

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