China NORth INdustries COrporation (NORINCO) has debuted a new light tank at Air Show Zhuhai 2016 designated the "VT-5". The VT-5 is intended as a low-cost / low-risk venture for the export market targeting national armies that see more modern Main Battle Tanks (MBTs) as out of reach and require more firepower and strength than that as offered by wheeled light tank systems.
The displayed vehicle showcases a low-profile design consistent with contemporary Russian and Chinese offerings. The turret sports well-sloped sides and the hull's glacis plate is nearly horizontal. The sides of the turret incorporate fencing / screens to protect against rocket attacks. The main gun system has no noticeable muzzle brake and a fume extractor is seen near the midway point of the barrel's length. Spare fuel drums are carried over the rear of the hull to help extend the vehicle's base travel range. Over the turret roof is a flexible mounting for 7.62mm or 12.7mm machine gun installations as an anti-infantry / anti-aircraft measure. A coaxial 7.62mm machine gun is assumed. Smoke grenade dischargers are also worked into the side turret panels to provide the vehicle and crew with a self-screening capability. The hull is further protected by Explosive Reactive Armor (ERA) sections.
The main gun is a 105mm caliber weapon which would give it good penetration values against light- and medium-armored vehicles. HE shell support will also allow the tank to support infantry advances into contested environments.
The running gear has the drive sprocket set to the rear and track idler mounted at front. Six double-tired roadwheels are present at each hull side. The upper reaches of the wheels, as well as the upper track link section range, is protected by skirt armor that is further reinforced by ERA panels. Power will most likely be from a single diesel unit.
It is assumed that an amphibious capability is built into the VT-5 - a common quality of Chinese / Soviet / Russian combat tanks.
Beyond these features, the VT-5 will carry panoramic sights, night vision support and an all-modern digital Fire Control System (FCS).