Poland Contracts for New Armoured Reconnaissance Vehicles

Kleszcz Armored Reconnaissance Vehicles.
Kleszcz Armored Reconnaissance Vehicles.

The Polish Army is modernizing its tactical reconnaissance capabilities in its signing of a contract with domestic vehicle developer AMZ-Kutno for the supply of Kleszcz which is based on the company’s Bóbr 3 light armored reconnaissance carriers (LOTR). 

These will replace the Soviet era BRDM-2 including those upgraded by Poland. The LOTR project is an element of Poland’s “Operational Patrol Reconnaissance” program included in its broader Technical Modernization Program of the Armed Forces. The contract executed on 28 February 2024 covers the procurement of 286 light armored reconnaissance carriers which will be delivered beginning in 2015 through 2035.

Bóbr 3 light armored reconnaissance carriers (LOTR).
Bóbr 3 light armored reconnaissance carriers (LOTR).

The Kleszcz uses the company’s wheeled 4 X 4 design powered by a 240 kW diesel power pak linked to an Allison automatic transmission. It has a road speed of 90 km/hour and the ability to move off-road. Protection against ballistic threats to 4569 STANAG Level 2 (7,62×39 mm ball at 30 meters) as well as against Level 2A (6 kg) mine blasts is provided. The vehicle is fully amphibious with a speed of 7 km/hour facilitating reconnaissance despite rivers and water obstacles. The LOTR is armed with a remotely controlled weapon station mounting a 12.7 mm and 7.62 mm machine.

The Kleszcz will carry five embarked soldiers which includes a driver. This will allow for dismount a reconnaissance team when appropriate. The vehicle has been displayed in defense shows equipped with a telescoping mast holding a reconnaissance and surveillance sensor package. This likely includes Day/Night electro-optical sensors, laser rangefinder, and tactical ground radar. It is further reported that the Kleszcz may have the ability to carry, deploy and control either or both unmanned aerial and ground vehicles to undertake remote surveillance.

It will likely have on-board navigation and positioning as well as secure communications and the ability to analyze and transfer intelligence data. The acquisition testifies to the recognition of the importance of forward on-the-ground battlefield reconnaissance as demonstrated in the conflict in Ukraine.

by Stephen W. Miller