Since the early 2000s Taiwan has been planning to design a completely new armored vehicle, designated CM-32
Taiwan’s defense industry has made great progress in the field of defense technology in general and armored combat vehicles in particular. Since the early 2000s Taiwan has been planning to design a completely new armored vehicle, designated CM-32, also known as Clouded Leopard. It is an eight-wheeled armored vehicle, based on the CM-31 6×6 designed by Timoney Technology Limited of Ireland. Production started in 2007, with an initial order for 600 units. It is estimated that up to 1,400 CM-32s may end up being in operational service.
The CM-32 has a weight of about 22 tons, a length of 7 m, a width of 2.7 m, and a height of 2.23 m. A standard operating crew includes the commander, gunner and driver. Basically, the CM-32 is modular in design, allow operators to purchase one chassis for different battlefield needs. The same hull, engine and chassis can mount various armament configurations to suit the mission at hand while being a logistically-friendly end-product.
These vehicles can take on the roles of armored personnel carrier, infantry fighting vehicle, command and control vehicle, battlefield ambulance, fire support, mortar carrier and the like without the high cost of purchasing dedicated systems.
The armor of the CM-32 provides protection of 7.62 mm AP rounds, while the frontal arc withstands 12.7 mm rounds. NBC protection and fire suppression systems are also standard. The V-shaped hull provides protection from landmines and can withstand 12 kg of TNT under any wheel.
The main weapon of the CM-32 is a 20mm autocannon system along with a 12.7mm Browning M2 heavy machine gun on a powered turret emplacement. The base CM-32 armored personnel carrier features a dual-weapon arrangement consisting of a 40mm automatic grenade launcher as well as a 12.7mm heavy machine gun. The fire support platform can mount a 105mm or 120mm main gun as needed. The mortar carrier variant is fitted with a 120mm field mortar for indirect fire support of allied infantry actions.