The CM-32 Yunpao (Cloud Leopard) is an 8×8 armoured personnel carrier operated by the Republic of China (Taiwan) Army. Image courtesy of 玄史生.
CM-32 Yunpao (Cloud Leopard) is an 8×8 armoured personnel carrier manufactured by the Ordnance Readiness Development Centre in Nantou for the Republic of China (Taiwan) Army. Originally designed by Timoney Technology of Ireland, the CM-32 Yunpao will replace ageing M113s and V-150 armoured vehicles of the Taiwan Army.
The development of the CM-32 began in 2002 and three prototypes were rolled out in January 2005. Serial production commenced in 2007, with an initial order for 600 vehicles.
The Taiwan Army plans to induct up to 1,400 CM-32 vehicles with 368 vehicles entering service by 2017-2018. CM3-2 Yunpao is also called the Taiwan infantry fighting vehicle (TIFV).
The CM-32 is a modular vehicle platform capable of accepting various armament configurations for specific combat requirements.
Major configurations include APC with a 12.7mm machine gun and 40mm automatic grenade launcher turret, mortar carrier with a 120mm mortar and fire support vehicle with 105mm low-recoil turret gun / 120mm gun.
The CM-32 Yunpao can be used as an armoured personnel carrier, infantry fighting vehicle, fire support vehicle, command and control vehicle and ambulance.
CM-32 Yunpao design and features
The CM-32 Yunpao is based on the CM-31 6×6 armoured vehicle developed by Timoney Technology. The design incorporates an all-welded steel armoured hull based on the 8×8 chassis.
The layout houses the driver at forward left and the power pack to his right. The two-person power-operated turret accommodates a commander and a gunner, while the troop section provides seating for six infantrymen.
The entry and exit for the troops are provided through the rear ramp or roof hatches.
The forward observation for the driver is provided by a single-piece hatch cover and day periscopes. The day periscope in the centre can be replaced with a passive periscope for night driving. The commander and gunner have a day / night sighting system.
The vehicle has a length of 6.35m, width of 2.7m and a height of 2.2m. The combat weight of the vehicle is 22t.
Cloud Leopard weapon systems and self-protection capabilities
The CM-32 Yunpao (Clouded Leopard) troop carrier configuration on display at an exhibition.
The CM-32 APC base version is armed with a 12.7mm machine gun and a 40mm automatic grenade launcher. The IFV is fitted with a power-operated turret mounting a 20mm cannon and 12.7mm heavy machine gun.
The vehicle can also be mounted with up to 120mm gun systems or 120mm mortar system. The armament configuration varies based on the mission variant.
The secondary armament is a roof-mounted 7.62mm machine gun for local and air-defence purposes.
The frontal arc of the CM-32 can withstand the shots of 12.7mm machine guns. All-round protection for crew and troops is provided against 7.62mm ammunition and small arms fire.
The V-shaped hull protects the occupants from the blasts of land mines.
The vehicle can survive the explosions of up to 12kg TNT under any wheel. The CM-32 is also fitted with integrated fire suppression system, as well as a nuclear, biological and chemical (NBC) suite to counter NBC attacks. The electrically operated smoke grenade launchers mounted at turret front create a wide smoke screen to conceal the vehicle from threats.
Engine and mobility of the 8×8 armoured personnel carrier
The CM-32 is powered by a Caterpillar C12 diesel engine coupled to the Allison HD4070 (P) seven-speed automatic transmission. The engine delivering a power of 410hp provides a maximum onroad speed of 120km/h and operational range of 800km.
The fully amphibious CM-32 is driven in water by two water jets mounted either side under the hull at the rear. The vehicle has a maximum amphibious speed of 8km/h.
The CM-32 is an all-wheel drive vehicle equipped with power-assisted steering, independent suspension and a central tyre pressure-regulation system as standard.
The tyre pressure-regulation system allows the driver to adjust the tyre pressure according to the terrain type. The vehicle has a turning radius of 8.5m to 9m. It can negotiate vertical steps of 1m and trenches of 2m. The CM-32 delivers high cross country mobility to operate along with modern mechanised units.