Presentation of Lazika
01 March, 2012

 

For the Georgian President the second half of February was a travel in the world of armored machinery. First it was a blitz ride on a MRAP Cougar armored vehicle on the Afghanistan soil. Then he tasted a recently created Georgian Lazika here, at Vaziani military base, Georgia. According to representatives of the Ministry of Defense, Lazika weighs around 14 tons; it is equipped with remotely controlled 23mm automatic canon and 7.6 mm machine gun, night- and thermal vision cameras. Its armor withstands 14.5 mm armor-penetrating bullets. Lazika crew consists of three members and can carry seven infantrymen.

 

 

The video tape clearly showed that Lazika is based on so called BMP, the Soviet infantry combat machine. Instead of six wheels, the tracks of Lazika turn on five wheels. As in BMP, the diesel motor is located in the front right corner, while seats for driver-mechanic and commander are installed to the left. Lazika is higher and has extra armor plates on sides. Presumably, it cannot float, unlike BMP.

Externalization of the armament and introduction of its remote control is justified but if this complex of 23mm automatic canon and 7.6 mm machine gun are not stabilized in the plains then precise shooting while on the move is next to impossible. In contrast to BMP, Lazika does not allow combatants whom it carries to shoot from their weapons because it has no openings on either side. One more difference is absence of two back doors in Lazika. There is one power operated ramp instead – certainly a better solution than the mechanical doors. What is more, the ramp contains an emergency door.

Even though Georgian Lazika is based on the BMP design, it looks very much like Turkish tracked armored vehicle ACV-C, strange as it may sound. It cannot be ruled out that Lazika creators at Tbilisi Tank Factory used certain technological features of Turkish Armored Transporter Ejder and Armored Vehicle Cobra which both are also on the list of combat vehicles used by the Georgian Army.