Skip to main content

Ukraine Modernizes Locally BTR-60PB Armored Personnel Carriers Donated by Bulgaria.

| Defense News Army 2024

Ukraine has begun the modernization of Bulgarian BTR-60PB armored personnel carriers provided as military aid. This initiative started at the beginning of the year when Ukraine received the first batch of 100 BTR-60PB-MD1s, previously stored in the Bulgarian Ministry of Interior warehouses. This information was reported by Militarnyi on April 17, 2024.
Follow Army Recognition on Google News at this link

Army Recognition Global Defense and Security news
The new Ukrainian BTR-60D armored personnel carriers. (Picture source: Militarnyi)

These vehicles, which are largely outdated in terms of technical specifications, are undergoing comprehensive upgrades to meet the standards of modern warfare and will also receive complete repairs. The modernization encompasses improvements in mobility, protection, and firepower, significantly revitalizing the capabilities of the BTR-60PB.

It should be noted that the Bulgarians had already modified the BTR-60PB into a variant known as the BTR-60PB-MD1, but none of these vehicles were sent to the Ukrainian armed forces.

The Ukrainians have made the following technical modifications to the Bulgarian BTR-60PBs. Originally from Soviet stock and considered beyond repair due to their wear, these vehicles receive more than essential replacements, including swapping the old twin 90-horsepower GAZ-40P engines for two new 102-horsepower Deutz BF4M2012 engines from Germany. This upgrade boosts the vehicle's power to 205 horsepower while maintaining a weight of 10,500 kg. The modernization strategy prefers using two engines instead of one to simplify the process and minimize structural changes, contrasting with previous Bulgarian updates that required significant modifications to the armored hull and engine compartment.

Changes include replacing impractical hatches with proper doors on the sides of the troop compartment, facilitating easier exit for soldiers. The seating arrangement inside has also been modified to improve capacity. The vehicle now accommodates seven paratroopers and three crew members—a commander, a driver-mechanic, and a gunner, the latter managing an enclosed machine gun turret.

The armament includes a 14.5-mm KPVT machine gun and a 7.62-mm PKT machine gun, enhanced with new optical and thermal sighting systems. Additionally, the driver-mechanic's station is equipped with the Ukrainian "SPO MBT" thermal imaging system, featuring cameras that provide visibility for up to 600 meters ahead and 25 meters to the rear. The armor of the BTR-60PB has been fortified with Armox 500T steel panels, effective against small arms and heavy machine gun fire, while maintaining the vehicle’s amphibious capabilities.

These enhancements, typical for Ukrainian armored vehicles, also include a new digital radio station "Lybid K-2RB" and the CH-4215 navigation system, ensuring that the new BTR-60D remains a viable asset in modern conflict scenarios. However, these improvements were largely necessary given the obsolescence of the vehicles sent by Bulgaria. It remains to be seen if these vehicles will truly be relevant on the battlefield.


Copyright © 2019 - 2024 Army Recognition | Webdesign by Zzam