The Philippine Army has formally re-inducted its upgraded ACV-300 tracked armored personnel carriers which received new Saber-40 and Saber-12.7 1-man turrets from Turkish defense company FNSS, as part of the Philippine Army’s M113 Firepower Upgrade Project, a Horizon 2 phase project under RAFPMP. MaxDefense reported that the modernization of the ACV-300 was the product of the Philippine Army’s M113 APC Firepower Upgrade, a project under the Horizon 2 phase of the RAFPMP. The project was inaptly named “M113” because the project was originally made to upgrade the Philippine Army’s M113A2 APCs without RCWS. The original plan was to improve the firepower capabilities of at least 32 units of its tracked armored personnel carriers, selected from those that were not upgraded by other projects.
In 2010, the Philippine Army received six ACV-300 upgraded armored personnel carriers from the government of Turkey as part of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) modernization program. But lessons learned from the Battle of Marawi in 2017 made the Philippine Army rethink on its plan. It was found that 7.62mm machine gun rounds are ineffective against concrete walls, and even 12.7mm heavy machine gun rounds have the same effects. Thus, a revised plan was made to instead use larger caliber guns, like the 25mm autocannon, which will be more powerful against concrete structures than the 12.7mm heavy machine gun, while also capable of destroying typical light armored vehicles.
The SABER Turret was developed by the Turkish defense company FNSS Savunma Sistemleri A.S. The SABER is a medium calibre one-man, power operated turret that can be fitted on wheeled and tracked armoured vehicles.The SABER turret is equipped with the latest technologies in turret drives, fire control, protection and lethality. Its compact dimensions and light weight make the SABER a suitable choice for different types of armoured vehicles. The SABER is available in different configurations, with a main weapon plus a co-axial 7.62mm general purpose machine gun. The SABER-25, SABER-40, and SABER-12.7 uses a 25mm autocannon, a 40mm automatic grenade launcher, or a 12.7mm heavy machine gun as its main weapon, respectively.
FNSS developed the ACV-300 based on the ACV-15 to meet the Turkish Land Forces Command’s (TLFC’s) operational requirement. While the ACV-300 (ACV-15) appear to be similar to the M113 series of tracked armored vehicles, it is in fact closer to the FMC Armored Infantry Fighting Vehicle (AIFV), more commonly known as the YPR-765 after the Dutch examples, which has some minimal improvements over the M113 family, like additional armor, sloped rear section, and enclosed turret/main weapon. ACV-300 is fitted with a 300 hp powerpack similar to the M113A3, but with high power. The Malaysian variant of the ACV-300 is called the ACV-300 Adnan and is a result of a collaboration between Turkish defense company FNSS and Malaysian defense company DefTech.