TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Taiwan military will conduct live-fire tests for two tank guns it purchased last year from the U.S as part of a new armored vehicle project, before they are shipped here in September.
Military personnel pointed out on Friday (June 5) that the two cannons will be used to design the gun for a new armored vehicle, which will be assigned to joint battalions for frontline and anti-armor missions. Since the vehicle is expected to weigh only about 30 to 40 tons, the recoil of the gun barrel must be reduced in order to maintain shooting stability and safety. The recoil force of the new cannon will be about 70 percent lower than that of Taiwan’s current guns of the same caliber, Liberty Times reported.
The Ministry of National Defense (MND) previously stated that the National Chung Shan Institute of Science and Technology (NCSIST) had purchased two M68A2 tank guns from the U.S., which approved the export license last December. In addition, NCSIST signed a technical assistance agreement this January with the American cannon manufacturer to provide technical documents and blueprints to facilitate research and development.
The new vehicle is expected to be a Clouded Leopard M2 armed with a 105 mm cannon, a 7.62mm coaxial machine gun, and a 12.7 mm turret machine gun. The MND and NCSIST will cooperate to produce two prototypes and begin developing a new 105mm armor-piercing projectile by 2023.