Venezuela displays new Chinese combat vehicles during military parade

During the military parade of July 5, 2018 marking Venezuela Independence Day, new military armored vehicles were unveiled which are now in service with the Venezuelan army including Chinese-made ZBD-05/VN-18 IFV (Infantry Fighting Vehicle), ZTD-05/VN-16 light tank and the Lynx 8x8 amphibious all-terrain vehicle.

Lynx 8x8 amphibious all terrain vehicle at Military Parade Venezuela Independence Day 2018 925 001
Chinese-made Lynx 8x8 amphibious all-terrain vehicle at Military parade in Caracas, Venezuela, July 5, 2018 (Picture source Internet)

According to the SIPRI (Stockholm International Peace Research Institute) arms trade database since 2012 Venezuela has purchase many military equipment from China including 25 Red Arrow-73 Anti-tank missile, 18 SM-4 81mm Self-propelled mortar, 18 SR-5 MLRS (Multiple Launch Rocket System), 40 Type-07P/VN-1 IFV, 121 VN-4 APC armoured personnel carrier, 25 ZBD-05/VN-18 IFV, 25 ZTD-05/VN-16 light tanks, 9 K-8 Karakorum-8 aircraft and C-802/CSS-N-8 Anti-ship missile.

NORINCO, China North Industries Corporation has presented for the first time, its new 8x8 all-terrain vehicle called Lynx at AAD 2016, the Africa Aerospace & Defence Exhibition. In the Venezuelan army, the vehicle is used by commando units.

The cargo area at the rear of the vehicle can be used to carry troops, personal equipment or ammunition. Payload capacity is about 600-900 kg. Seating is provided for the driver and 5 passengers. This all-terrain vehicle can also tow light artillery cannon.

The Lynx is powered by a small turbocharged diesel engine, developing around 30 hp. The vehicle can run at a maximum speed of 45 km/h with a maximum cruising range of 250 km. This type of vehicle can travel over all kinds of cross-country terrain, including forests, swamps and sand. Tracks can be fitted for travelling over ice and snow. A self-recovery winch is mounted at the front of the vehicle.

The Lynx is fully amphibious with a payload capacity up to 300 kg propelled in the water by its wheels.

ZTD 05 VN 16 105mm light tank at Military Parade Venezuela Independence Day 2018 925 001
Chinese-made VN-16 105mm amphibious light tank at Military parade in Caracas, Venezuela, July 5, 2018 (Picture source Internet)

The ZTD-05 also named VN-16 for the export version is an amphibious assault tracked armoured vehicle or 105mm light tank designed and manufactured in China by NORINCO, especially for naval infantry units.

The ZTD-05 is armed with a fully-stabilized 105mm rifled gun, similar to that found on the ZTS63A amphibious tank. The gun can fire the armour piercing fin stabilized discarding sabot (APFSDS), high explosive (HE), and high-explosive anti-tank (HEAT) rounds, and the Chinese indigenous 105mm gun-fired laser beam riding guidance anti-tank guided missile (ATGM) derived from the Russian 9M117 Bastion technology.

The ZTD-05 and ZBD-05 are used by the Naval Infantry units of the Venezuelan armed forces.

ZBD 05 VN 18 amphibious IFV at Military Parade Venezuela Independence Day 2018 925 001
Chinese-made VN-18 amphibious IFV on tracked armoured from the Venezuelan armed forces (Picture source Internet)

The ZBD-05 also called VN-18 for the export version is an amphibious Infantry Fighting Vehicle (IFV) based on tracked armored using the chassis of the ZBD2000 family of tracked armored.

The ZBD-05 is fitted with a two man turret, armed with a 30 mm cannon, one single missile rail launcher is mounted to each side of the turret for the wire-guided Hong Jian-73C anti-tank guided missiles tat can fire to a range from 4 to 5 km. A 7.62 mm coaxial machine gun is mounted to the left side of the main armament. A 12.7mm machine gun can be mounted on the roof of the turret.

The layout of the ZBD-05 or VN-18 consists of three main parts with the powerpack at the front, turret in the centre of the hull and troop's compartment at the rear. It has a crew of three including driver, commander and gunner and can accommodate up to ten fully equipped soldiers.

The ZBD-05 is fully amphibious, in the water the vehicle is propelled by two large water jets mounted to the rear side of the hull.