|Manufacturer:||FNSS Defence Systems Inc|
|Product type:||Armoured Vehicles|
|Name:||Wheeled armoured personnel carrier|
The Pars (Turkish for Anatolian Leopard) is an armoured vehicle family with 4x4, 6x6, 8x8 and 10x10 versions, produced by FNSS - FMC-Nurol Defense Systems of Turkey in co-operation with the U.S. company General Purpose Vehicles. Pars 6x6 is being proposed to the Turkish Army and in 2006 the 8x8 vehicle was tested by the Malaysian Army against the Swiss Piranha IIIC and the Polish Rosomak, but so far Malaysia has not decided to procure any of these vehicles. The Pars 8x8 was also tested in United Arab Emirates' desert trials in 2008 and completed 11.000km desert and road trials successfully.
The FNSS Savunma Sistemleri Pars (Leopard) 8x8 armoured fighting vehicle (AFV) was shown for the first time in February 2005 during the IDEX defence equipment exhibition held in Abu Dhabi.
The Pars family of wheeled AFV began development in 2002 by FNSS Savunma Sistemleri as a private venture in co-operation with US company General Purpose Vehicles (GPV). Pars is also referred to as the 8x8x8, as all wheels are driven and all can be steered.
As well as meeting the emerging Turkish Land Forces Command (TLFC) requirements for a wheeled Armoured Personnel Carrier (APC), the Pars family of wheeled AFV is also being aimed at the export market.
Although the first example shown at IDEX 2005 was in the 8x8 configuration and unarmed, the complete Pars family also includes 4x4, 6x6 and 10x10 models, which have already been built and extensively tested. This family of modular wheeled AFVs all share a high level of common automotive components with the obvious logistical and training advantages to the user.
The total weight of the Pars vehicle depends on the weapon fit, crew and armour package. The 4x4 model has a typical combat weight of 13.608 tonnes, the 6x6 18.2 tonnes and the 8x8 25 tonnes.
According to FNSS Savunma Sistemleri, Pars is a new family of wheeled AFVs that incorporates numerous advanced, unique features. As the vehicle has an open electronics architecture, it is claimed that inserting new technology can be achieved more easily as it becomes available.
During the IDEF Defence Equipment Exhibition held in Turkey in late 2005 examples of the Pars were shown in 8x8, 6x6 and 4x4 configurations. Late in 2005 examples of the 6 × 6 and 4 × 4 went to an undisclosed country in the Middle East for an extensive series of user trials.
Examples of the Pars have been tested in Asia and the Middle East but as of late 2007 no firm production orders had been placed.
The baseline 8 × 8 Pars vehicle has a hull consisting of a composite aluminium and steel armour that provides the occupants with protection from 7.62 mm armour-piercing attack through a full 360°. Higher levels of protection are available if required, using an appliqué armour package.
The driver and commander are seated in a cockpit at the very front of the vehicle. Each has a single-piece roof hatch that opens to the side. Both have access to the flat-panel displays, on which all relevant information is shown.
Periscopes provide the driver and commander with complete vision through the front and sides of the vehicle. Images from the front and rear thermal and CCD (Charged Coupled Device) cameras can be displayed on the flat-panel displays for improved situational awareness.
Left- or right-hand drive steering can be selected by either person at any time. An automatic transmission and power steering is fitted as standard to reduce crew fatigue. The 8 × 8 model features steering on all eight wheels.
The diesel power pack is mounted to the rear of the driver and commander position on the left side of the hull and an access passage to the troop compartment at the rear is provided in the right side of the hull. The first Pars vehicles have a Deutz diesel engine but other engines could be installed such as Caterpillar or MTU. The prototype has a ZF automatic transmission but an Allison automatic transmission could also be installed.
The seating arrangement depends on the role but the troops are normally seated on individual seats down each side of the hull facing inwards. All shock-absorbing seats are fitted with five-point seatbelts as standard.
Troops normally enter and leave the vehicle via a large ramp at the rear, which is of an unusual design. While the major part of the ramp folds downwards a much smaller part folds upwards on the outside. This allows for improved vision over the rear of the vehicle, in some combat situations, and also allows the troops to have improved situational awareness before they leave the vehicle. There are two escape hatches in the troop compartment. One is situated in left side of the hull between the third and forth road wheel stations, while the other is situated in the right side of the hull between the first and second road wheel stations.
To allow for Pars to be rapidly re-configured for different operational roles, all members of the Pars family have a removable roof so that it can be quickly converted for a wide range of specialist roles.
The roof arrangement depends on the mission but in the basic APC mode a cupola is mounted on the roof to the rear of the engine compartment. A variety of weapons can be installed on this, such as a 7.62 mm or 12.7 mm machine gun or a 40 mm automatic grenade launcher.
The number of roof hatches also depends on the mission that the vehicle is required to undertake. The example shown at IDEX had four roof hatches, two either side, that opened outwards. In either side of the troop compartment roof are two periscopes that provide the troops with observation to the sides of the vehicle.
A high level of cross-country mobility is achieved due to the installation of a pneumatic, independent suspension system that gives a total wheel travel of 520 mm. A dual-channel central tyre-inflation system (CTIS) is fitted as standard and this allows the driver to adjust the tyre pressure to suite the terrain being crossed. The tyres are provided with run-flat tyre inserts.
The baseline Pars version is fully amphibious, propelled in the water by two water jets positioned one either side at the rear of the hull. These provide a water speed of at least 10 km/h. Standard equipment includes all-wheel steering, automatic drivetrain management, integrated 2.2 kW (16 hp) auxiliary power unit and a hydraulic 133 kN self-recovery winch.
The 8 × 8 model of Pars is being marketed in a number of versions, which are dependent as to whether or not the customer requires the vehicle to be fully air transportable in a C-130 Hercules aircraft. A wider version of the Pars 8 × 8 is marketed with greater internal volume.
As previously stated, the Pars wheeled AFV family can be rapidly configured for a wide range of roles and missions. The 4 × 4 version, for example, has a crew of two and can carry six fully equipped troops, while the 6 × 6 model has a crew of two and can carry eight troops in the rear. Pars Skyranger
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