UVZ to modernize old fleet of BMP-1 to new BMP-1AM standard

Russia`s research-and-manufacturing corporation Uralvagonzavod (UVZ, a subsidiary of Rostec state corporation) has initiated the BMP-1AM Basurmanin (Foreigner) program, according to a spokesperson for UVZ.

UVZ to upgrade existing bmp1 to bmp1am
The BMP-1AM was displayed during a live demonstration at ARMY-2018 in Russia

The program envisages the upgrade of the obsolete BMP-1 infantry fighting vehicle (IFV) to a modern standard. "The UVZ has developed the BMP-1AM modernization program. The Basurmanin is finishing its trials. Several days ago, the upgraded IFV passed through its air transportability tests," the representative of UVZ said. However, he did not detail the scale of the Basurmanin program.

The open sources say the Russian armed forces operate several hundred BMP-1 IFVs, with several thousand vehicles of the type being stored. According to the Military Balance 2018 analytical book published by the London-based International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS), the Russian Land Forces (SV) still use approximately 500 BMP-1s. "The Basurmanin modernization program will be of a large-scale nature," the representative of UVZ added.

The BMP-1AM Basurmanin upgraded IFV was unveiled at the Army 2018 international military-technical forum held in Kubinka near Moscow on August 21-26. The vehicle weighs 13 t, has a three-strong crew and transports up to eight equipped servicemen. The organic BMP-1`s manned turret armed with a 2A28 Grom 73 mm semi-automatic cannon, one ready-use 9M14M Malyutka (NATO reporting name: AT-3 Sagger) anti-tank guided missile (ATGM), six Tucha 902-family smoke dischargers and a Kalashnikov PKT 7.62 mm coaxial medium machinegun has been replaced by an updated combat module of the BTR-82A armored personnel carrier (APC). The new weapon station carries a 2A72 30 mm automatic cannon, a Kalashnikov PKTM 7.62 mm medium machinegun, and one ready-use Metis-family ATGM (probably, the 9M115 Metis (AT-7 Saxhorn) or 9M131 Metis-M (AT-13 Saxhorn-2) missile). The station`s sensor suite integrates a fire-control system with a TKN-4GA-01 day-night sight. The combat module also features a dual-axis stabilizer of the main weapon. The BMP-1AM is powered by a UTD-20S1 diesel engine with a maximum power output of 300 hp, which produces a road speed of 65 km/h and a road cruise range of 600 km.

The BMP-1AM Basurmanin IFV seems to be intended mainly for foreign customers. The Russian military is now receiving the BMP-2M Berezhok upgraded IFVs, and the modernization of the obsolete BMP-1 has almost no sense. Compared to the weapon station of the BMP-1AM, the Berezhok features a heavier armament suite, which incorporates a 2A42 30 mm automatic cannon, a PKTM coaxial machinegun, four ready-use 9M133 Kornet (AT-14 Spriggan) ATGMs, and an AG-30 30 mm automatic grenade launcher. Unlike the Basurmanin, the sensor suite of the Berezhok comprises an automatic target tracker. Therefore, the BMP-2M`s firepower exceeds substantially that of the BMP-1AM. However, Basurmanin is a cost-effective upgrade as it offers the combat effectiveness of an IFV at a price of an APC.

According to the Military Balance 2018 book, the world`s militaries operate approximately 7,000 BMP-1 IFVs

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