By Hayati Nupus
The Philippines and Bangladesh have put an order for 100 KAPLAN medium tanks which are co-produced by Turkish defense contractor FNNS and Indonesia's PT Pindad, said Windu Paramata, the head of the medium tank project at Pindad.
Paramata said the two countries had expressed willingness to buy 40 to 50 units each.
"In October, we will be demonstrating medium tanks there, as a condition for the procurement of defense equipment in their countries," Paramata told Anadolu Agency on Friday.
Paramata said the Indonesian Ministry of Defense also mulled purchasing the KAPLAN tanks but the ministry was still evaluating the number of units to be procured.
Paramata said the Indonesian Army's Research and Development Agency had certified the medium tank earlier this year.
Paramata praised the Turkish-Indonesian battle tank as featuring the most recent technology in the global defense industry.
Poland followed suit in producing a similar tank, Paramata said, adding, however, that the country was still at the concept stage.
Paramata said the medium tank is suitable for use in countries with only two seasons in Southeast Asia, such as Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, and the Philippines as well as in four-season countries as it can operate at a maximum temperature of 50 degrees Celsius, and at a minimum temperature of - 30 degrees Celsius.
KAPLAN MT medium-weight tank
The tank's prototype was first exhibited at the 13th International Defense Industry Fair held last May.
A CMI Cockerill 3105 tower -- equipped to fire high-pressure 105mm shells -- provides the tank’s firepower.
Diesel-engine powered, the tank has a fully automatic transmission and is able to carry three crew members -- a driver, shooter and commander.
With a maximum speed of 70 kilometers per hour (43.4 miles per hour), the vehicle travels distances of up to 450 kilometers (280 miles).
Ballistic guards protect the tank's body and the vehicle has add-on armor. In addition, the tank's belly is guarded against mines.
It also has a secondary weapon in the shape of a 7.62mm coaxial machine gun.