China has new tanks for arms export

China main tank and armored vehicle maker Norinco has shown several new armored vehicles for the export market. China has a new GL-5 hard-kill active protection system (APS), which destroyed a guided missile attacking a tank in a live fire exercise. The GL-5 system consists of four radars and fixed projectile launchers, which are attached to a tank turret for 360 degree coverage.

The Soviet Drozd active protection system was equipped to Soviet tanks in the early 1980s, and saw significant use in the Soviet war in Afghanistan on older model tanks. Later, during a 1995 special armor conference in Kubinka, a Soviet T-72 tank fitted with an updated version of APS (most likely the Arena Active Protection System) successfully protected against KONKURS ATGMs and RPG-type weapons. The Israeli Iron Fist and Trophy systems have been used for several years in combat deployment and are highly successful.

The GL-5 hard-kill active protection system consists of four munition launchers, four multipurpose, millimeter-wave radars, and a control computer Hongjian

The new VN-17 infantry-fighting vehicle (IFV) uses a heavily modified version of the 33-ton VT-5 light tank’s chassis. It has an unmanned (read: remotely controlled) turret with two large, multi-lens electro-optical and infrared sensors (one each for the gunner and commander). Those sensors come in handy when the system needs to use its 35mm cannon, 7.62mm machine gun, or medium-range HJ-12 anti-tank missiles.

In 2016, China solidified its position as a top-tier supplier by increasing exports by 6.2%. However, China is a distant third in arms exports behind the USA and Russia.