FAS | Military | DOD 101 | Systems | Land | ROW ||||
Index | Search |



Type 59

Most PLA equipment is produced from Soviet designs of the 1950s, but weapons were being incrementally upgraded, some with Western technology. The Type 59 main battle tank is based on the Soviet T-54. In the early 50's China was supplied with a quantity of Soviet T-54 Main Battle Tanks (MBT) China undertook production of a copy of the T-54A as the Type 59 MBT. Type 59s have been employed in various conflicts around the world in Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Notable users of the vehicle are China, Vietnam, Cambodia, North Korea and Pakistan (more than 1,300). Chinese Type 59s were also sold or given to Albania, Bangladesh, The Congo, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe. At least 6,000 Type 59 and 59II MBTs served in the PLA and many will remain in service until China decides on a next generation tank. A new GEC-Marconi Centaur fire control system is available, and British Barr and Stroud thermal based FCS can be fitted.

VARIANTS:

Specifications

Designations Type 59-II / WZ 120B
Date of Introduction 1951
Proliferation At least 2 countries
Description
Crew 4
Combat Weight (mt) 36.5-37.0
Chassis Length Overall (m) 6.04
Height Overall (m) 2.59
Width Overall (m) 3.30
Ground Pressure (kg/cm 2 ) 0.8
Automotive Performance
Engine Type 520-hp Diesel
Cruising Range (km) 440/600 with external tanks
Speed (km/h)
Max Road 50
Max Off-Road 25
Average Cross-Country INA
Max Swim N/A
Fording Depths (m) 1.4 Unprepared, 5.5 with snorkel
Radio INA
Protection
Armor, Turret Front (mm) 203
Applique Armor (mm) Track skirts are fitted to some tanks
Explosive Reactive Armor (mm) N/A
Active Protective System N/A
Mineclearing Equipment Mine plows and roller-plows available
Self-Entrenching Blade N/A
NBC Protection System N/A
Smoke Equipment 8 x 81-mm smoke grenade launchers Vehicle engine exhaust smoke system
ARMAMENT
Main Armaments
Caliber, Type, Name 105-mm rifled gun, similar to L7
Rate of Fire (rd/min) 6-10
Loader Type Manual
Ready/Stowed Rounds INA
Elevation () -5/+18
Fire on Move Yes
Auxiliary Weapon
Caliber, Type, Name 7.62-mm (7.62x 54R) Machine gun Type 59T
Mount Type Turret coax
Maximum Aimed Range (m) 2,000
Max Effective Range (m)
Day 1,000
Night 800
Fire on Move Yes
Rate of Fire (rd/min) 250 practical, 600 cyclic in 2-10 round bursts
Caliber, Type, Name 7.62-mm (7.62x 54R) Machine gun Type 59T
Mount Type Bow ball mount
Maximum Aimed Range (m) 1,000
Max Effective Range (m)
Day 1,000
Night N/A
Fire on Move Yes
Rate of Fire (rd/min) 250 practical, 600 cyclic in 2-10 round bursts
Caliber, Type, Name 12.7-mm (12.7x108) AA MG Type 54
Mount Type Turret cupola
Maximum Aimed Range (m) 2.000
Max Effective Range (m)
Day 1,500 ground/1,600 for air targets (APDS)
Night N/A, II sights available
Fire on Move Yes
Rate of Fire (rd/min) 80-100 practical, 600 air targets 2-10 rd bursts
FIRE CONTROL
FCS Name UI light spot fire control system
Main Gun Stabilization 2-plane
Rangefinder LRF
Infrared Searchlight Yes
Sights w/Magnification
Gunner
Day INA
Field of View () INA
Acquisition Range (m) INA
Night Type DC 1024/00 II sights, x7
Field of View () 6
Acquisition Range (m) 1,000
Commander Fire Main Gun No
MAIN ARMAMENT AMMUNITION
Caliber, Type, Name
105-mm APFSDS, H6/62
Maximum Aimed Range (m) 3,000
Max Effective Range (m)
Day 2,000-3,000 (est)
Night 800-1,300
Armor Penetration (mm) INA
105-mm APFSDS, UI (New Chinese)
Maximum Aimed Range (m) 3,000
Max Effective Range (m)
Day 2,000-3,000 (est)
Night 800-1,300
Armor Penetration (mm) 460 at 2,000 m
105-mm HEAT, M456 (multinational)
Maximum Aimed Range (m) 3,000
Max Effective Range (m)
Day 1,500-2,500 (est)
Night 800-1,300
Armor Penetration (mm) 432, NATO single heavy target
105-mm HESH, L35 (UK)
Maximum Aimed Range (m) 5,000
Max Effective Range (m)
Day 2,000-3,000 (est)
Night 800-1,300
Armor Penetration (mm) NATO single heavy target
Other Ammunition Types Chinese Type 83/ UK L64/ US M735 APFSDS, UK L52 APDS, multinational M393 HEP-T, French OE 105-F1 HE, L39 Smoke, cannister



FAS | Military | DOD 101 | Systems | Land | ROW ||||
Index | Search |


http://www.fas.org/man/dod-101/sys/land/row/type-59.htm
Maintained by Webmaster

Updated Friday, June 18, 1999 8:19:18 AM