With the armored personnel carrier having entered mass production, the army was quick to deny reports that the armor plating was substandard
The Ministry of National Defense on Monday denied reports that the armoring on the domestically produced CM-32 Clouded Leopard personnel carrier, which entered mass production in late 2010, was below standard.
The Chinese-language Apple Daily said ballistic resistance live-fire tests in March 2010 showed that the armor plating on the Clouded Leopard does not comply with the bulletproof specifications set by the military. Puncture holes were observed on an armored panel at the rear of one of the vehicles, it said, adding that this raised questions about the armor’s ability to protect personnel on board.
The eight-wheeled, 25-tonne Clouded Leopard armored vehicle is a joint project between the Ordnance Readiness Development Center and the Chungshan Institute of Science and Technology (中山科學研究院).
In a press release on Monday, the ministry denied that the armor plating, which is also domestically produced, was not up to standards and said the armoring, which had been tested several times, complied with specifications. The front plating of the vehicle is designed to withstand 12.7mm machine gun and armor-piercing incendiary (API) ammunition, while the side and rear sections provide protection against 7.62mm ammunition and small arms fire.
My article, published today in the Taipei Times, continues here.