The Singapore Army commissioned Belrex Protected Combat Support Vehicles (PCSV) in November 2016. The vehicles are expected to replace 5t trucks and Mercedes Benz MB290 armoured vehicles operated by the Singapore Army.
The Belrex vehicle was developed by ST Kinetics and Defence Science and Technology Agency (DSTA) based on a Marauder mine-resistant, ambush-protected vehicle platform developed by South African firm Paramount Group. The PCSV is intended to offer enhanced fire power, survivability and situational awareness for the Singapore Armed Forces' motorised infantry units on the battlefield.
The Singapore Armed Forces announced the acquisition of Belrex-protected vehicles in June 2016.
Belrex PCSV design and features
The Belrex PCSV is based on 4x4 wheeled chassis and features a modular design. The vehicle measures 7.25m-long, 2.6m-wide and 2.75m-high.
With a gross weight of 20t, the vehicle can carry payloads weighing approximately 4,000kg. It accommodates two crew members in the protected cabin and up to eight dismounted troops at the rear.
A large windscreen at the front offers an increased field of view to the crew. A door with a bulletproof window is provided on either side of the protected crew cabin to facilitate entry and exit of the operators.
Belrex armament and protection
The Belrex vehicle is armed with a 7.62mm remotely operated machine gun to provide close fire support against small armoured targets and military personnel. The weapon is remotely operated by the crew inside the vehicle.
The vehicle can resist small arms fire and close proximity mine blasts. Three smoke grenade launchers located on either side of the gun mount provide additional survivability.
Onboard command and control suite
Situational awareness for the vehicle operators is provided by the onboard C4 (command, control, communications and computers) suite.
The onboard C4 systems enable the crew to exchange information with friendly forces on the battlefield. They also allow the operators to communicate with other motorised infantry forces through the Singapore Armed Forces' Army Battlefield Internet (ABI) network.
Belrex PCSV engine and mobility
Driven by a single engine offering a power-to-weight ratio of 14.8hp/t, the Belrex Protected Combat Support Vehicle can attain a maximum speed of 110km/h and travel up to 600km.
The vehicle can negotiate vertical steps of 0.4m, cross trenches of 0.95m and traverse through front slopes of 60%.
Variants of the protected combat support vehicle
The Belrex-protected wheeled vehicle can be configured to play a number of roles, including security, combat engineer, reconnaissance, logistics, fuel, mortar, medical, signal, maintenance, and mortar ammunition carrier.
"The PCSV is intended to offer enhanced fire power, survivability and situational awareness for the Singapore Armed Forces' motorised infantry units on the battlefield."
The security variant is provided with rear step bumpers to facilitate quick ingress and egress for infantrymen, while the combat engineer version is fitted with a push bar at the front to remove obstacles of up to 1t. The fuel variant is used for refuelling two vehicles simultaneously using the onboard fuel dispenser.
The mortar variant of the Belrex PCSV comes with an advanced mortar system for providing increased fire support. Equipped with an ammunition carriage system, the mortar ammunition carrier variant is aimed at supplying mortar ammunition.
In reconnaissance configuration, the protected wheeled vehicle carries mobility equipment and surveillance sensors for reconnaissance missions.
The signal variant serves as an integrated communications platform to increase command and control capabilities.
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Reprinted from Army Technology website, Jan 2017. Copyright 2017. All rights reserved.