Israel: Panther, new multipurpose armored personnel carrier for IDF


The IDF’s Technology and Logistics Division has completed the development of a new armored personnel carrier nicknamed Panther, which will be used for ongoing low-intensity confrontation operations, Yoav Zitunforsem reports.


Israel Panther new armored personnel carrier for IDF
Panther multi-purpose armored vehicle (Picture source: Yoav Zitun)


The IDF's Technology and Logistics Division has recently completed the development of a new armored combat vehicle, the Panther, for routine security missions in various sectors. The Panther will replace the Wolf, which has been used by the battalions in the regional brigades for the last 15 years, as well as the Sparrow, the smaller version of the Safari trucks from the days of the security zone in southern Lebanon.

A second prototype of the Panther is currently undergoing final test trips at the IDF's extensive experimental camp in West Rishon LeZion, and a serial production of the first five panther vehicles will be carried out in the next few months at the armored procurement factories at Tel Hashomer.

Like the wolf, based on the American Dodge or Ford, the Panther will also be based on a platform already in use by 80,000 Oshkosh trucks of the US Army. Hundreds of these trucks have already been purchased for logistic transport in the IDF, so their common configuration will allow a 25% reduction in vehicles from this family. Indeed, the Israeli Ministry of Defense announced on its official website the acquisition of 200 FMTV (Family of Medium Tactical Vehicles) trucks from the American Company Oshkosh Defense for a value contract of $200 million.

The total weight of the new vehicle will be at least 10 tons. The rear body will be painted in blue and white, and will be mounted on the American base. This is a spacious combat compartment, where 12 to 14 fighters can comfortably sit on padded seats to avoid overloading the knees that have caused fatigue in the relatively low and less comfortable seats known from previous combat vehicles. The compartement can also accommodate 6 litters in the ambulance configuration.

The front compartment will include an upgraded air-conditioning and heating system, wider windows with a direct and optimal line of sight toward the outside, more effective opening angle slits, and differential stone protection bars, depending on the level of threat.

The vehicle is painted on the outside and inside with special materials for thermal insulation, temperature preservation and flame retardation, beyond the sealing of the passenger compartment, which prevents the fire from entering it, for example, when throwing a Molotov cocktail at the vehicle. The protection panels are designed to absorb light-weapon bullets, such as machine guns, up to 7.62 mm calilber and possibly .50 as well. The ballistic protection can be further increased with additional armour. In the absence of active shielding, the Panther will also be likely armed with Kornet anti-tank missiles, and will be prepared for a possible fitting of a machine gun bracket. 

The speed of the Panther will probably be limited to around 55-60 km/h for safety reasons, despite the ability of the new vehicle to travel at 90km/h safely. The Panther will have drivers who have taken an operational driving course. In the coming years, the IDF will produce about 100 panther vehicles for all sectors.


Panther new multipurpose armored personnel carrier for Israel army video image 925 001


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