Taiwan’s Ministry of National Defense (MND) confirmed plans to develop two Clouded Leopard II prototypes by October.
This project is the first domestically developed armored vehicle. It has passed the research and development evaluation stages. The vehicle heights comply with the specifications outlined in the design, per the Military News Agency.
The MND exhibited a prototype of the next-generation 8×8 Cloud Leopard II development in public for the first time at the 2019 Taipei Aerospace & Defense Technology Exhibition. It is expected that the prototype will be able to configurate into a mortar carrier platform, a self-propelled howitzer and a fire support platform with a 105 mm gun, similar to U.S Army's M1128 Mobile Gun System.
The shooting accuracy and stability of the vehicle exceed functional and performance standards, the ministry said. It is currently undergoing initial operational assessments.
The MND said the Armaments Bureau will further develop production models based on the operational requirements of the Army after the prototypes pass initial operational assessments.
The new Clouded Leopards will increase infantry strength by providing greater firepower and rapid strike abilities.