China launches its VN20 most protected and armed tracked armored IFV in its category
At AirShow China 2022, the Chinese Defense company NORINCO launches its new VN20 tracked armored IFV (Infantry Fighting Vehicle) considered the most protected and armed combat vehicle of its class.
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Chinese company NORINCO launches its new VN20, the most protected and armed tracked armored IFV Infantry Fighting Vehicle in its category at AirShow China 2022. (Picture source: Weibo Chinese social network)
The VN20 is based on a modified tracked chassis of the VT4 Main Battle Tank (MBT) with additional armor mounted at the front and the sides of the hull. According to our analysis, the driver is seated on the lefthand side of the hull. Another crew member, who might be the commander, is seated on his right. The engine is located at the front of the hull. The rear part of the vehicle can accommodate up to six infantrymen who board and leave the vehicle by a single hydraulic ramp.
The VN20 displayed at AirShow China 2022 seems to be fitted with a remotely operated weapon station armed with a 30mm automatic cannon, but according to a video published on Chinese social networks, the VN20 can be also equipped with a two-man turret armed with a 100mm and a 30mm cannons, like the Russian BMP-3 tracked armored IFV, a remotely-controlled machine gun on the turret roof, and, a unique feature, two remotely-controlled 7.62mm machine guns mounted at the rear of the hull.
Close view of the VN20 turret armed with a 30mm automatic cannon and the impressive armor package (Picture source: Weibo Chinese social network)
The VN20 can be also fitted with a two-man turret armed with a 100 mm and a 30 mm cannons, and two 7.62mm machine guns, one of which is mounted at the rear of the hull (Picture source: Weibo)
The VN20 is fitted with an incredible armor package mounted around the hull and the turret. The front and the upper part of the sides hull is protected by ERA (Explosive Reactive Armor) while the lower part is fitted with armor plates and wire cage armor covering the suspension of the vehicle.
The turret is also fitted with an impressive thickness of armor at 360°. Citing a Chinese defense source, the VN20 offers ballistic protection Level 6 STANAG 4569 against the firing of 30mm APFSDS (Armor-Piercing Fin-Stabilized Discarding Sabot) or AP (Armor-Piercing) at 500 m at the front and center line.
The VN20 keeps the original suspension of the VT4 consisting of six large dual rubber-tired road wheels with the drive sprocket at the front, idler at the rear, and track return rollers. To extend the operational range of the VN20, two additional diesel fuel drums can be mounted externally at the rear.
The sides of the hull are protected with three levels of armor including standard armor plates, ERA Explosive Reactive Armor, and wire cage. (Picture source Weibo)