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During the International Defence Industry Exhibition (MSPO) in Kielce Huta Stalowa Wola (HSW), a member of the Polish Armaments Group (Polska Grupa Zbrojeniowa, PGZ) holding, presented a prototype of the next generation swimming, infantry fighting vehicle (Nowy Bojowy Pływający Wóz Piechoty, NBPWP), which is being developed under the Borsuk programme.

The Borsuk programme calls for the procurement of a number of new tracked IFVs, which will eventually replace the currently used vehicles of this class, the legacy BWP-1. It is expected that Poland could acquire even several thousand of the NBPWP family of vehicles.

The Polish MoD put Borsuk on a list of high priority procurement programmes and included it in the latest Technical Modernization Plan 2017-2026, which was published early 2019.

Over the past several months the prototype of the new Polish infantry fighting vehicle, which will be showcased in Kielce, has undergone a series of static and dynamic trials. They were to confirm that platform’s design meets the technical requirements set by the manufacturer as well as the future user, the Polish MoD.

The NBPWP platform will be presented with a 30mm turreted, remote-controlled weapon system (Zdalnie Sterowany System Wieżowy, ZSSW-30), which was designed to fight, destroy and suppress enemy light and heavy armoured targets and other objects – including the enemy’s infrastructure – in different climate conditions, and to provide fire support for units during combat operations, at any time.

In the future, the ZSSW-30 weapon system could be integrated with Rosomak/Patria AMV 8×8 wheeled, armoured vehicles, that are widely operated by the Polish Army and armed forces of several countries in Europe.

According to the manufacturer, the new Polish IFV platform will have a swimming capability, making it able to cross wide water obstacles, as well as to operate in diversified terrain and various weather conditions. Furthermore, the NBPWP vehicle will be characterized by its high manoeuvrability and ability to be easily transported by air or land.

The next generation Polish IFV will provide a high level of ballistic protection for the crews and dismounted soldiers, withstanding direct shot from firearms and rocket-propelled grenades, as well as the explosion of IEDs or mines. The manufacturer intends to develop several variants of the NBPWP, from a light, swimming vehicle to a heavily armed combat platform.

Michal Jarocki