In Southeast Asia, in addition to the Leopard II tanks in service with Indonesia and Singapore, another notable name is the PT-91M Pendekar

According to Malaysia Military Power, PT-91M Pendekar is the most modern main battle tank of the Malaysian Army today and was once the king of tanks in Southeast Asia until the arrival of the Leopard 2 of Singapore and Indonesia. However, in terms of overall strength, PT-91M is still a formidable opponent on the battlefield.

The PT-91M main battle tank is a modernized and exported variant exclusively for Malaysia, based on the Polish PT-91 Twardy tank family. The PT-91 on the other hand is an improved version of the former Soviet T-72M1 model. However, the PT-91 still has its own characteristics compared to the T-72 variants in some other Eastern European countries. The first public presentation of PT-91M took place on August 31, 2005 in Kuala Lumpur, during the big parade on Malaysia Independence Day.

PT-91M Pendekar
PT-91M Pendekar

Similar to the original version, PT-91M has a weight of about 48.5 tons, length is 6.86 m, width is 3.70 m, and height is 2.60 m. The PT-91M is slightly different from tanks which are being used by the Polish Army. The tank is powered by new, developed in PZL Wola together with German Renk power pack consists of engine S1000R with 1000 HP and SESM Renk ESM350M driving system. Tank is equipped with Slovakian Company Konstrukta Defence 2A46MS cannon, with electronic stabilisation system from EADS, and with new mechanisms of rising cannon and turret rotation. Also front and turret armour-plate configuration has been changed.

PT-91M is equipped also with Sagem Savan 12 fire control systems with panoramic commander surveillance device VIGY-15. Also armour has been changed, by strengthening it. The tank has been equipped also in universal self-defence system SSP-1 Obra 3 from Industrial Optical Center, which cooperates with 2 suite of 81mm smoke grenades launcher 902A. Tank’s cannon are compound with 7.62mm machine gun from Belgian FN Herstal. This company delivers also 12.7 mm large-bore machine gun M2HB-QCB operated by commander and installed on the turret.

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