The VT4 main battle tank , also known as the MBT3000, is a Chinese third generation main battle tank built by Norinco for overseas export. It is an upgraded variant of the MBT2000 (VT-1) and the latest tank model from the Type 90-II tank family.
The VT-4 has a 125mm smoothbore cannon capable of firing APFSDS, HESH, HEAT and HE rounds and guided missiles. There is also a remote weapon station on the turret armed with a 12.7 mm heavy machine gun. The fire control system has hunter-killer capabilities, laser rangefinder, panoramic sight, and a third generation thermal imaging system. The MBT-3000 can carry a total of thirty eight rounds of main ammunition. Types of separate loading ammunition that can be fired by the 125 mm smoothbore gun include kinetic energy penetrator, high explosive squash head and high explosive anti-tank warhead. Mounted either rear side of the turret is a bank of six electrically operated smoke grenade launchers which fire forwards. In addition, the tank is equipped with a set of guided weapons, allowing use of a guided missile 9K119 Refleks with a range of up to 5 km.
The commander is seated on the right and the gunner is seated on the left with both provided with single-piece roof hatches and vision devices. The turret is in the centre and is of all-welded steel armour construction to which a layer of composite armour has been added over the frontal arc. To increase the body side protection, the MBT-3000 can be fitted with explosive reactive armour (ERA). Stowage baskets are mounted to the rear and each side of the turret. The tank appears to have composite and explosive reactive armor. The turret front has wedge shaped armor and the hull sides have armored sideskirts. The tank is equipped with an active protection system designated GL5, defensive grenade launchers, and a laser warning device. The vehicle also has an IFF system, NBC protection, explosion suppression system, fire extinguishing system, and air conditioning.
According to Norinco, the VT-4 uses a locally produced 1,300 hp diesel engine with torsion bar suspension and an integrated hydraulic transmission system. Steering and acceleration is handled by a steering wheel and automatic gear transmission. Suspension is of the torsion bar type with hydraulic shock absorbers and either side consists of six large dual rubber-tyred roadwheels with the drive sprocket at the front, idler at the rear and track return rollers. The 52-tonnes MBT-300 can run a maximum road speed of 70 km/h with a maximum cruising range of 500 km. The MBT-3000 can ford a depth of 4 to 5 m with preparation and a trench of 2.7m. The tank can climb a gradient of 60% and a vertical obstacle of 1.2m maximum.
The tank is also integrated with digital communications systems for tank-tank communication and communication between commanders.