BEIJING - China has inducted its much- publicised light battle tank, introduced in Tibet during the height of the Doklam standoff with India, and for the first time the Army displayed its photo at a military exhibition here, a media report said on Wednesday.
Developed by the China North Industries Group Corp, the country’s biggest maker of land armaments, the light tank, whose weight ranges from 25 to 35 metric tonnes, is equipped with a hydropneumatic suspension system that ensures good manoeuvrability and survivability in mountainous regions.
Its main weapon is a 105-mm gun that is able to fire both shells and guided missiles, according to weapons experts, who said the tank’s main task is to fight on plateaus even at very low temperatures.
By comparison, a main battle tank, such as the US’ M1 Abrams and China’s Type 99A, weighs up to 65 tonnes, state-run China Daily reported.
The light tank whose name and details are yet to be revealed was deployed for the first time into well publicised exercises of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) in the Tibet plateau in June as part of the pressure tactics against India during the 73-day Doklam standoff which ended on August 28. The 2.3-million-strong PLA has confirmed the deployment of a new light tank, which observers say will suit combat operations on plateaus, the Daily report quoted experts as saying.