Arjun MK-II is all set and gearing up for its final Summer Trials which are to be held by end of next month or in early July before it hits productions. Indian army has asked for 93 improvements to the Arjun Mark II tank including 19 major modifications.
All the modifications suggested by the army had been successfully incorporated in the tank and will be ready for final trials by Indian army after which DRDO will seek clearance for production to start. Heavy Vehicles Factory (HVF) Avadi will need 30 months (Two and a half years) to deliver first batch of Arjun MK-2 to Indian army, DRDO is also hoping for fresh orders of Arjun MK-II from its current 126 placed by Indian army some time back.
MK-2 will see increase in weight from 62 tonne to 67 tonne. The suspension has been re-designed to handle up to 70 tonne weight. Wheels are bigger in dimensions and have improved track length, MK-2 will be powered by the same MTU engine imported from Germany but it has been improved to carry extra weight of the tank but the top speed of the tank will be limited to 58kmph coming down from 72kmph seen on MK-1 Arjun. DRDO is working on indigenous powerhouse for future tanks but Integrations with Arjun can only happen if Army places order for 3 more Regiments of Arjun MKII (350). Otherwise it will only serve in next generation battle tank which Drdo is developing under Futuristic Main Battle Tank (FMBT) Program for Indian Army post 2020.
MK-2 will have improvements like missile firing capability, improved commander’s panoramic sight with night vision, Hunter killer capability, improved Auxiliary Power Unit (APU) , improved communication equipments along with better navigation aid , full frontal Explosive Reactive Armour (ERA), Mine plough , improved gun barrel , additional ammunition types.
In Previous trials MK2 did not face any issues and Army was satisfied with its performance, DRDO has now completed all the improvements asked by Indian army on MK-2 variant and hopes Army will be satisfied after final rounds of trials and clears production of it along with fresh orders.