Russia will start serial production of its latest T-14 Armata tank next year.
"The [tank’s] state trials will come to a close next year. It will actively go into serial production from next year," Russian Industry and Trade Minister Denis Manturov was quoted as saying by TASS on Monday.
In August last year, manufacturer UralVagonZavod hinted at a possible development of the tank’s unmanned version. "The appearance of heavy unmanned combat vehicles is a matter of the near future. Within the framework of R&D commissioned by the Ministry of Defense, the company's specialists are working to create robotic combat vehicles of the front edge. During the work, the T-14 Armata tank was also tested in unmanned mode," the company announced during the Army-2020 forum in Moscow.
The T-14 Armata is a Russian 5th generation main battle tank based on the Armata Universal Combat Platform. The tank is operated by a three-member crew from an armored capsule at the front. According to the Russian state-media, it is the first tank in the world to incorporate “network centric warfare” technologies. The T-14 can be used as a reconnaissance, target designation and fire adjustment vehicle for self-propelled guns, surface-to-air missile systems and T-90 tanks.
The tank’s armament includes a 7.62mm remote-control machine gun and 125mm smoothbore cannon. An unmanned version of the Armata is planned and is currently in development.
The T-14 has been painted with anti-slip coating, and features a lavatory to provide comforts to the crew during long combat missions.