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ASCOD 2

Infantry fighting vehicle

ASCOD 2

The ASCOD 2 is much more technologically advanced than its predecessor

 
 
Entered service ?
Crew 3 men
Personnel ~ 7 men
Dimensions and weight
Weight ~ 30 t
Weight (with add-on armor) 42 t
Length ~ 7.6 m
Width ~ 3.4 m
Height 2.5 ~ 2.8 m
Armament
Main gun ?
Machine guns ?
Mobility
Engine MTU V8 199 T21 diesel
Engine power 805 hp
Maximum road speed 70 km/h
Range ~ 500 km
Maneuverability
Gradient 60%
Side slope 40%
Vertical step ~ 0.9 m
Trench ~ 2.5 m
Fording 1.5 m

 

   The ASCOD 2 family of armored vehicles was developed by General Dynamics European Land Systems. Headquarters of this company is located in Spain. The acronym ASCOD stands for Austrian-Spanish COoperative Development. In the 1990s an infantry fighting vehicle was developed for Austria and Spain. It is known as Ulan in Austria and Pizarro in Spain. Essentially it was the same vehicle, but Austrian and Spanish vehicles have some differences to suit local needs. Production vehicles entered service with both countries in 2002.

   General Dynamics was constantly improving the original ASCOD and proposed various variants. Development of the second generation vehicle commenced in 2004. The ASCOD 2, is much more technologically advanced than its predecessor. It has a refined hull design, new engine and transmission, new automotive components, modified driver's position, advanced sensors and a number of other improvements. The new vehicle is better protected than its predecessor.

   Normal weight of the ASCOD 2 vehicle is about 30 t. It can be increased to 42 t. So it is significantly heavier than the previous Pizarro and Ulan. The ASCOD 2 offers higher level of protection than its predecessor. Vehicle has an advanced modular armor and innovative mine protection. Hull floor has a special shape, plus there is a layer of add-on composite armor. Also vehicle has a higher ground clearance due to redesigned suspension. Crew and passengers are seated on mine blast resistant seats. It is worth noting that due to mine threat concerns Spanish Army was not using its Pizarro IFVs in Afghanistan and Iraq. The new ASCOD 2 withstands blasts equivalent to more than 10 kg of TNT anywhere under the hull or under any track location.

   Add-on armor kit can be fitted when needed. Newer armor modules can be fitted once these become available. Some sources report, once add-on armor is fitted vehicle withstands hits from 25-mm armor-piercing rounds from any direction. The ASCOD 2 can be also fitted with modern electronic counter measures and survivability systems. Vehicle can be fitted with Saab LEDS or Raphael Trophy active protection systems.

   It is believed that the ASCOD 2 with maximum level of protection is one of the most protected vehicles in its class. Protection level might approach that of the German Puma IFV.

   The baseline infantry fighting vehicle has a crew of three, including commander, gunner and driver. It accommodates about 7 troops, depending on the version. In the armored personnel carrier version it has a crew of 2 and carries 8 troops. Dismounts enter and leave the vehicle via rear doors. Also there are roof hatches for observation, firing and emergency exit.

   The ASCOD 2 can be fitted with various armament, depending on the version. A baseline armored personnel carrier can be fitted with remotely-controlled 12.7-mm machine gun. An infantry fighting vehicle version can be armed with a turret-mounted 25-, 30-, or even 40-mm cannon.

   The ASCOD 2 is powered by a German MTU V8 199 T21 turbocharged diesel engine, developing 805 hp. Engine is located at the front. It is mated with a Renk HSLW256B 6-speed automatic transmission. If required, the ASCOD 2 can be also fitted with hybrid propulsion.

   General Dynamics developed various versions of the ASCOD 2 to meet requirements of the possible operators. This baseline platform is being customized to suit various roles. However in some cases there are many differenced between various variants of the ASCOD 2.

 

Variants

 

   Pizarro Phase 2 or Pizarro 2 is a Spanish infantry fighting vehicle with a number of improvements. It has a refined hull design and improved weapon stabilization system. It is currently in production for the Spanish Army. Spanish Army ordered a total of 190 of the phase 2 vehicles. All of these are planned to be delivered by 2016;

   Ulan Phase 2 or Ulan 2. A proposed improved version for the Austrian Army. However Austrian MoD was not willing to order this vehicle;

   Donar 155-mm self-propelled howitzer, based on the ASCOD 2 chassis. It was jointly developed by Krauss-Maffei Wegmann and General Dynamics. It was revealed in 2008;

   Scout Specialist Vehicle, an armored reconnaissance vehicle, developed to meet a British Army requirement. It is based on the ASCOD 2 and is fitted with a 40-mm turret. In 2014 production contract was awarded to General Dynamics to deliver a total of 589 Specialist Vehicle platforms in 6 variants to the British Army. It was the biggest single contract for an armored vehicle for the British Army since the 1980s. First production vehicles are planned to be delivered in 2017. These will replace the old CVR(T) family vehicles, developed by Alvis;

   ASCOD DK is a version of the ASCOD 2 intended to meet requirements of the Danish Army. Danish Army plans to replace its ageing fleet of M113 armored personnel carriers. The ASCOD DK is based on the Pizarro Phase 2 vehicle, but has improved protection. It is powered by an MTU V8 199 series engine, developing 710 hp and transmission of the original ASCOD. It weights about 31-33 t. In 2013 this armored vehicle was delivered for trials in Denmark. It was competing against the Armadillo, Piranha V, VBCI and G5 armored personnel carriers.

 

Video of the ASCOD 2 armored vehicle

 
ASCOD 2

ASCOD 2

ASCOD 2

ASCOD 2

ASCOD 2


 
ASCOD 2

ASCOD 2

ASCOD 2

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