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Multipurpose Tracked Armored Vehicle – Russia

MT LBu APC Multipurpose tracked armored vehicle Russia 925 001


The MT-LBu or MTLBu is a Soviet multipurpose amphibious tracked armored personnel carrier that was designed in Ukraine early 1960s. It is a bigger, redesigned and unarmed version of the MT-LB, with a more powerful engine, a 40 cm higher hull, and a longer chassis with 7 road wheels on each side.

In the Russian army, more than 45 variants are available and a total of 4.000 vehicles were built. In multiple countries, a lot of defense companies have developed several modernized or upgraded variants. The MT-LBu can also tow a trailer or weapon up to 6,500 kg or carry equipment up to 4,000 kg. A total of 6 soldiers can be carried inside the vehicle.

MT-LBu main variants:

- R-381T Taran system: a multi-vehicle system for SIGINT (Signal Intelligence) and electronic warfare, consisting of two R-381T2s, two R-381T1s, and one R-381T3.
1L219 Zoopark-1: this variant is an artillery reconnaissance radar vehicle
- 1V12 "Mashina" fire control system: a multiple-vehicle system consisting of 8 vehicles in 4 different variants (1V13, 1V14, 1V15, 1V16). This set of vehicles is found in artillery units equipped with self-propelled howitzers like the 2S1 Gvozdika, 2S3 Akatsiya, 2S5 Giatsint-S and 2S19 Msta-S.

Technical Data

The standard version of the MT-LBu is not armed, however, some variants can be fit with a turret mounted on the roof hull or with a ring mount armed with a 7.62 or 12.7mm machine gun. 
Design and protection
The MT-LBu design consists of two main parts with the driver sitting at the front of the hull on the left side and has a single-piece hatch with three-day periscopes at the front. The commander sits to the right of the driver in the center and has a single-piece rear-opening hatch cover and two-day periscopes. The driver and commander have a windscreen in front of their positions which can be covered by an armor plate. The troops enter and leave the vehicle by a door in the rear of the hull, which is provided with a firing port. There is an additional firing port and vision block on each side of the troop compartment.

The overall design of the MT-LBu is a very low-profile box-shaped tracked vehicle, with side-sloped armor on the flanks, a V-shaped front, and a vertical back, with one access door. The hull of the MT-LBu is all-welded steel armor that provides protection against the firing of small arms and shell splinters.
The MT-LBu is motorized with a YaMZ-238N V-8 cylinder diesel engine developing 300 hp. at 2,100 rpm. The MT-LBu is fitted with a torsion bar suspension which consists of each side of seven roadwheels with the drive sprocket at the front and the idler at the rear with hydraulic shock absorbers on swing arms on the first and last roadwheel stations. The MT-LBu can run at a maximum road speed of 62 km/h and a maximum water speed of 6 km/h with a maximum cruising range of 500 km. The vehicle is able to negotiate slopes up to 60%, side slopes to 30%, and natural and engineered trenches of 2.41m maximum.
Combat Equipment
Standard equipment of the MT-LBu includes an NBC (Nuclear, Bacteriological, Chemical) protection system and night vision equipment. A white searchlight is mounted at the front of the crew compartment. The driver position can be equipped with a night vision device. The MT-LBu is fully amphibious being propelled in the water by its tracks. Before entering the water a trim vane is erected at the front of the vehicle and the bilge pumps.


Armament Armor
One PKT 7.62mm machine gun 3 to 10 mm of steel protection against small arms firing and shell splinters
Country users Weight
Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bulgaria, China, Czech Republic, Egypt, Finland, Georgia, Hungary, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Libya, Poland, Russia, Serbia, Sweden, Ukraine, Venezuela. 11,500 kg
Designer Country Speed
Russia – Ukraine 62 km/h
Combat Equipment Range
NBC protection system, night vision equipment, white searchlight, fully amphibious 500 km
Crew Dimensions
2 +  6 infantrymen Length: 7,2 m; Width: 2,85 m; Height: 2,1 m

Details View

MT LBu APC Multipurpose tracked armored vehicle Russia front view MT LBu APC Multipurpose tracked armored vehicle Russia rear view
MT LBu APC Multipurpose tracked armored vehicle Russia side right view MT LBu APC Multipurpose tracked armored vehicle Russia side left view

Pictures - Video


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