By Dmitry Fediushko
Russia’s Military-Industrial Company (Voyenno-Promishlennaya Kompaniya, VPK) is developing a brand new generation of 4×4 protected light utility vehicles (LUV), which is a successor to the well-known VPK Tigr LUVs. The new vehicle dubbed AMN-2 Atlet (Athlete) was officially unveiled at the Army 2019 defence show held in Kubinka near Moscow in late June.
Unlike the Tigr, the Atlet is designed as a mine-resistant ambush-protected vehicle. The manufacturer claims that the new platform is originally designed as troop and materiel cargo; however, considering the fact that the baseline Tigr is used as a chassis for more than 80 different versions, the Atlet could become a new 4×4 workhorse of the Russian military.
The new 4×4 light protected platform is 5,700 mm long, 2,350 mm wide, and 2,550 mm high and weighs some 9 tonnes. Depending on the configuration, it transports two to eight fully equipped servicemen.
The Atlet is powered by a YaMZ-5347-family diesel engine with a power output of some 300 hp, reaching a maximum road speed of no less than 120 km/h and a range of 1,000 km. VPK offers the vehicle with two gearbox options, namely, a less expensive five-speed mechanical or a six-speed automatic.
The platform’s armoured hull provides protection against small-calibre rounds and splinters at Level 2 according to STANAG 4569. It should be mentioned that the vehicle is also equipped with a reinforced engine compartment that features Level 1 STANAG 4569 protection. The platform can resist the explosion of 2 kg of TNT under its belly or wheels.
The basic AMN-2 carries no armament at all. At the same time, the Atlet can carry a remotely controlled weapon station, for instance, the Arbalet-DM, which is now being delivered to the Russian military. Typically, this RCWS is armed with a 6P49 Kord 12.7 mm heavy machinegun, which can be replaced by a compact automatic cannon or an automatic grenade launcher.
At the Army 2019 show, the VPK did not provide any information about the further development of the Atlet 4×4 protected LUV.
Photo by Dmitry Fediushko