Borsuk is an amphibious infantry fighting vehicle produced by Huta Stalowa Wola, a part of PGZ, designed to replace the fleet of obsolete BWP-1.
In a major effort to modernize the fleet of tracked combat vehicles, Polish Defense Minister Mariusz Błaszczak on March 1 signed a framework agreement for the procurement of about 1,400 Borsuk infantry fighting vehicles. Borsuk is an amphibious infantry fighting vehicle produced by Huta Stalowa Wola, a part of PGZ, designed to replace the fleet of obsolete BWP-1.
The first deliveries are scheduled between 2024 and 2025. “The first four examples will be tested by the Polish Armed Forces this year,” said the Polish Minister. Borsuk IFV is a modern tracked vehicle designed for mechanized infantry elements, with the expectation of bringing high combat efficiency as well as features superior to the old infantry fighting vehicles. It is known that these vehicles were field tested by the Polish army at the Orzysz training ground on November 14, 2022.
Development of this vehicle began in 2014 and the first version was unveiled in September 2017 at the Polish Defense Exhibition. Borsuk weighs 25 tons, when equipped with additional armor, it can be up to 40 tons. The vehicle has a length of 7.5 m, a width of 3.5 m and a height of 2.7 m. Borsuk IFV is equipped with basic armor, capable of protecting against shell fragments and mine blasts. In addition, Borsuk can also install other armor layers depending on requirements and tasks.
The layout of the Borsuk is divided into three main sections with the driver’s position in the front left, a turret mounted in the middle, and the troop compartment at the rear. The vehicle’s combat crew has 3 people including: driver, gunner and commander. It can also carry up to 8 fully armed soldiers.
Borsuk is based on a tracked chassis developed and manufactured entirely in Poland. The vehicle uses a MTU 8V199 TE20 diesel engine with a capacity of 720 horsepower, allowing it to travel at a speed of 70 km/h, a range of 600 km. When overcoming water obstacles, the IFV can develop a speed of up to 8 km/h.
The Borsuk is fitted with a remotely-controlled turret, which was developed under the ZSSW-30 program. It is armed with a 30 mm cannon. There is a coaxial 7.62 mm machine gun and two Spike LR anti-tank guided missile launchers. The turret has a modern fire control system with a hunter-killer capability. The ZSSW-30 turret has been developed as a separate program.
Due to an on-board weapon system, the infantry fighting vehicle has the ability to fight infantry, armored vehicles, air targets and other objects in all weather conditions and at any time of the day. It is estimated that a single Borsuk IFV could cost around $6.6 million. Cost of the Polish remotely-controlled turret would constitute almost 50% of the vehicle value.
After the dissolution of the Warsaw Pact military bloc, Poland has about 1,300 BMP-1 and BWP-1 infantry fighting vehicles designed by the Soviet Union since the 1960s. The Polish military’s IFVs are outdated, unable to effectively cope with the new threats of 21st-century warfare. The new Borsuk infantry fighting vehicle procurement package will take the combat power of Polish infantry to a whole new level.