The Ministry of Defense of Indonesia is mulling the purchase of 79 additional BT-3F armored personnel carriers (APCs) from Russia for an estimated $289 million. The first contract for the supply of 22 BMP-3F marine fighting vehicles and 21 BT-3F marine personnel carriers based on them was signed between the Ministry of Defense of Indonesia and Rosoboronexport in April last year. The contract value amounted to 175,2 million dollars. These orders have not yet arrived in Indonesia, they are planned to be delivered in 2021–2022.
The BT-3F is a new Russian tracked armored personnel carrier designed by JSC Kurganmashzavod. The amphibious BT-3F is based on the BMP-3F marines fighting vehicle, which is derived from the BMP-3 infantry fighting vehicle with improved amphibious capabilities. The new IFV is anticipated to replace Russia’s ageing MT-LB amphibious armoured personnel carrier. The armoured vehicle is manned by three crew members and can carry up to 14 troops. The driver sits in the middle of the hull, while the commander and assistant commander seats are placed on either side of the driver.
This armored personnel carrier is fitted with a remotely-controlled weapon station, armed with a 7.62 mm machine gun. Though heavier weapons, such as 12.7- or 14.5 mm heavy machine guns, or 30- or 40 mm automatic grenade launchers. Additionally there are two bow-mounted and forward-firing 7.62 mm machine guns. The BT-3F marines fighting vehicle retains the engine and transmission of the BMP-3. Specially designed for operations at sea, with improved seaworthiness and buoyancy, capability to move afloat at sea state 3.
Indonesian marines received 54 BMP-3F and 1 BREM-L currently in service, with another 22 BMP-3F ordered in 2019 along with 21 BT-3F. The BT-3F marines personnel carriers was originally developed on the basis of the BMP-3F with the aim of promoting primarily the Indonesian Marine Corps, which ultimately succeeded. The decision to create the BT-3F was approved in 2010, for the first time the BT-3F prototype was presented at the Army-2016 International Military Technical Forum.