Summer marathon vehicles: BMD-4

One of main prizes in the War Thunder summer marathon is the Russian experimental BMD-4 air-portable fighting vehicle with deadly ATGMs and a good auto cannon!

BMD-4, light tank, USSR, rank VI. Event vehicle.

Pros

  • Tandem warhead ATGM
  • Rapid-fire 30mm gun
  • Swim capable
  • Good mobility

Cons

  • Weak protection
  • Small crew
History

A complex of research aimed at increasing the combat effectiveness of the Soviet airborne combat vehicle named "Bakhcha-U" was carried out in the Tula Instrument Design Bureau in the second half of the 90’s. As a result of the research, the Volgograd Tractor Plant presented an experimental BMD-4 combat vehicle with the Bakhcha-U module, which was put into service on the last day of 2004. An experimental batch of 60 vehicles was delivered to the 137th Guard Paratrooper Regiment for testing. Compared to the BMD-3, the new vehicle significantly surpassed it in terms of combat effectiveness and technical characteristics.

Much attention was paid to the complex of anti-tank armament - a 100mm cannon-launcher could use guided missiles, including missiles with a tandem warhead. During the tests of the pilot batch, the manufacturer went bankrupt and Kurganmashzavod continued work on the vehicle. During the modernization, an improved version of the IFV was created, which entered service with the Russian army under the name BMD-4M.

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The BMD-4 is the main prize in the War Thunder summer marathon; it is available as an event vehicle at rank VI in the USSR/Russian ground vehicles research tree. In terms of its playing qualities, the BMD-4 is a striking representative of the top-tier vehicles of the "light tank" class - high speed, weak armor and powerful anti-tank weapons. The closest analogue of this combat vehicle is the Russian BMP-3. We have the same 100mm rifled cannon, which is also a launcher for ATGM’s, and a rapid-firing 30mm autocannon, which works great on light armored vehicles, and is also suitable for destroying helicopters. Driving performance is superior to the BMP-3 due to lighter weight and noticeably better power-to-weight ratio. The tracked platform is great for driving on any surface, and is even able to swim. The commander, gunner and driver have night vision sights; the gunner's sight is additionally equipped with a thermal imager.

By the way: BMD-4 is an experimental vehicle. In the future, armored vehicles of the BMD family will also appear in the tech tree.

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A distinctive feature of the BMD-4 over most of its “classmates” from other gaming nations is the ability to launch ATGM’s directly from the gun barrel. Missiles can be launched on the move, with up  to 4 missiles available:  9M117 with armor penetration of 600mm available out of the box, and a researchable tandem warhead 9M117M1 with penetration up to 750 mm and a firing distance of 5.5 km. Tandem warhead ATGM’s are able to overcome the explosive reactive armor of most tanks and are among the most effective ammunition for destroying vehicles in the game. Unlike manual loading of missiles on the BMP-3, here the ATGM’s are loaded with an automatic loader with a reload rate no more than 5-6 seconds.

The disadvantages of the vehicle are quite obvious. Light armor does not provide reliable protection for the crew and internal modules, being vulnerable even against heavy machine guns when fired at the vehicle’s sides. The crew of the BMD-4 is only three people, they are concentrated in a cramped fighting compartment next to the ammunition rack and the fuel tank. As a rule, the BMD-4 lives until the first hit from a tank gun - like most tanks of this class, however. The rifled 100mm cannon contains only two types of high-explosive fragmentation shots. Their combat effectiveness for destroying enemy tanks is very small, but they will help to destroy ERA modules or quickly burn a lightly armored vehicle or anti-aircraft gun.

The roles of the BMD-4 are capturing points, reconnaissance, assistance to allies and, of course, sniper fire at enemy tanks at very long distances. This vehicle is an excellent representative of the "light tank" class and a desirable addition to the setup of Soviet armored vehicles of the VI-VII ranks.

Summer Landing

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