The Dragon wheeled combat vehicle (VCR) is one of the great bets of the Army to renew its armored vehicles.
Last December, delivery of the first 12 vehicles to the Army: 7 sapper vehicles and the 5 demonstrators. The most numerous version of the Dragon VCR will be the VCI (Infantry Combat Vehicle), whose first phase will consist of 219 units. The VCIs will be divided into two versions: one part will carry Guardian 2.0 remote control turrets with a 12.7mm Browning M-2 machine gun, while the others will carry Guardian turrets with 30 mm cannons, a 7.62 mm coaxial machine gun and 12 smoke grenade launchers.
In addition, 40 of the Dragon VCIs with Guardian 30 turrets will carry two retractable launchers for Spike LR2 anti-tank missiles. As you will remember, a year ago we saw here testing those launchers. Today the Spanish company that manufactures these turrets, Escribano Mechanical and Engineering, has published a spectacular video showing the firepower of the Guardian 30 turret, both with its main gun and its missiles:
You can see here some screenshots that show interesting things that appear in the video. Here we see the 30 mm Mk44S Bushmaster II cannon in action, equipped with a stabilizer to be able to shoot while moving. This turret can fire anti-personnel explosive ABM ammunition.
Here we see the turret in detail. On the left is the retractable launcher for two Spiker LR2 missiles. We also see six of the smoke grenade launchers (the other six are on the left side of the turret) and next to them the 30mm cannon, which ejects the cartridges already used forward. It can hit targets at a distance of 1,500 meters. To the right of the barrel is the 7.62mm coaxial machine gun, and to its left are the electro-optical systems, including a daytime camera (capable of detecting targets at 14 km), an infrared camera (with a detection range of 19 km) and a laser rangefinder (with a range of up to 15 km).
Here we see a test launch of the Spike LR2 missile. This missile is an improved version of the Spike LR already used by the Army. The LR has a range of 4,000 meters, while the LR2 can destroy targets at 5,500 meters.
One of the main innovations of the Spike LR2 is that it has a target tracker with artificial intelligence functions, which improves the aiming of this anti-tank system.
The Spike LR2 has 30% more armor penetration than the LR. Like its predecessor, it has a tandem-charged warhead to destroy targets with reactive armor. Like other missiles of its type, it has a function to attack its targets from above, where Russian tanks have less armor.
Escribano highlights, in addition, that the Guardian 30 turret "has outstanding long range accuracy thanks to its next-gen ballistic calculator, which combined with a modular design and a low profile significantly reduces its radar footprint."
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