The Romanian Zimbru 2000 8×8 Wheeled Infantry Fighting Vehicle Background
The Russian BTR series has also been manufactured in Romanian. Known as the TAB (Romanian: Transportor Amfibiu Blindat, translated Amphibious Armoured Personnel Carrier) series, they have a number of modifications to meet the requirements of the Romanian Army.
The last of the TAB series to be manufactured was the TAB Zimbru aka the B33 Zimbru, which was a modified version of the BTR-80. Since 2000, the manufacturer CN RomArm SA developed an improved version called Zimbru 2000.
It is almost identical to the B33, but has a raised roofline to provide greater internal volume. The lay out of the vehicle is the commander (right) & driver (left) sit in the front. Behind them is the turret which is operated by a gunner. Behind that is the infantry troop compartment and the final section was the engine. Troops enter and leave via a door in the side of the hull between the second and third road wheels.
The Romanian Zimbru 2000 8×8 Wheeled Infantry Fighting Vehicle Spec’s
The Zimbru 2000 is powered by a new Deutz BF 6M 1013 turbocharged diesel engine, developing 260 hp. This APC is fitted with a central tyre inflation system. Vehicle is fully amphibious. On water it is propelled by a single waterjet.
The one-man turret is mounted on the roof to the rear of the commander and driver and is armed with a 14.5 mm KPVT machine gun with a 7.62 mm PKT machine gun mounted coaxial. The vehicle has also been fitted and tested with the Israeli Rafael 25mm & Rheinmetall 30mm remotely controlled weapon stations.
The hull and turret of the is of all-welded steel armour that provides the occupants with protection against 12.7mm rounds over the frontal arc and all-round protection from 7.62 mm small arms fire and shell splinters.
Development is complete and the manufacturer went on to develop the Saur 1 & 2. All three vehicles have failed to attract any orders, nationally or internationally, with the Romanian Army purchasing the Swiss 8×8 Piranha IIIC in the last few years.