What is an EIFV

EIFV

     Notes: The Egyptian Infantry Fighting Vehicle (EIFV; also known by its BAE developmental name, Infantry Fighting Vehicle - Light, or IFV-L) is a virtually unique vehicle designed by BAE for the Egyptian Army to solve a specific problem; so far, BAE Systems has not attempted to shop the design around elsewhere.  The Egyptian Army’s use of the M-113 series and other M-113-based vehicles has been growing since peace between Israel and Egypt became a reality in the late 1970s, and the Egyptians began turning away from their former Soviet masters and towards the West for military hardware and trade in other areas.  One of the problems posed by this new Western alliance was the Egyptian’s procurement and eventually production of the M-1A1 Abrams tank, a fast, maneuverable vehicle even in the sands of the Egyptian deserts.

     The primary IFVs and APCs the Egyptians had at the time, the BMP-1, BMP-2, Fahd, and M-113, could not keep up with an M-1A1 unit with a full head of steam.  The BMP-2s had armament comparable to modern IFVs, but the rest, including the BMP-1s, were outclassed on the modern battlefield.  Unfortunately, the Egyptians’ recent military acquisitions, especially the M-1A1 (which they went into in a big way), meant that they didn’t have the funds for something like a Bradley or Warrior, the cheap Russian hardware that would become available in the future wasn’t there yet, and the Egyptians didn’t want to jeopardize their new relationship with the US by going to the Chinese.  So they contacted BAE systems and asked them how they could modify their M-113A2s to fit the bill.  BAE responded with a hybrid vehicle – a lengthened M-113A2 with the turret of an M-2A2 Bradley.  In real-world cost, the new vehicle would cost about a fifth the price of an M-2A2 Bradley, but provide a significant increase in firepower and mobility.  In addition, it could be built in Egypt by the ETF (Egyptian Tank Factory), at the same facilities that were being built to produce the M-1A1.  This was just the thing the Egyptians were looking for.  By 2010, they have built or modified some 1200 EIFVs; production had begun in 1997, and development had started in late 1994.

The Original Specs

     The original specifications of the EIFV called for the lengthening of the M-113A2 to six roadwheels on each side and moving the fuel tanks to the rear of the vehicle in the same manner as on the M-113A3, making the EIFV’s hull over a meter longer than the M-113A2, and even a half a meter longer than an M-113A3.  Much of the hull layout is retained, with the driver to the front left and a large hatch on the rear deck opening to the rear for the passengers to stand.  (The driver’s hatch is a bit different – it rotates open slightly up and laterally opens to the right instead of opening upwards.) Though the Egyptians don’t make use of it, amphibious capability could be easily retrofitted by simply re-mounting the trim vane and enabling the bilge pumps (which are still present, but deactivated, in the EIFV).  The hull shape is unmistakably an M-113-series vehicle, and the roadwheels, drive sprockets, and idler wheels are identical to those of an M-113A2. The suspension is beefed up, but is still based on torsion bars with hydraulic shock absorbers at the front and rear roadwheels.  The side and frontal armor is improved with appliqué armor, including armored side skirts, but the rear ramp with a door in it are still present.

     On the other hand, the engine, drive train, transmission, and driver’s station were greatly-modified, with the engine being replaced with a 350-horsepower turbocharged diesel, the transmission fully automatic, and the driver’s station having a steering yoke instead of the M-113A2’s steering laterals, as well as a conventional brake and gas pedal.  The fuel tanks were also greatly enlarged.

     Of course, the biggest change was the addition of the Bradley turret.  This provided a great increase in firepower, and also allowed part of the EIFV force to be used as scout vehicles if desired.  This turret gave the EIFV a 25mm M-242 ChainGun, a coaxial machinegun, and twin TOW launchers.  It also gave the Egyptians a vehicle that could match the Abrams in the day/night vision department. (The commander does not have his own thermal imager, but can see through the gunner’s thermal imager.) At the front sides of the turret are a cluster of four smoke grenade launchers on each side.

     The Egyptians were happy with this original version of the EIFV – but not totally.  The engine had to work hard to keep up with the M-1A1 as it was, and the Egyptians were considering a further appliqué armor package that could be added to increase protection for the EIFV.  The resulting weight of the package they envisioned would definitely have the EIFV straining to keep up, not to mention the added wear and tear operating the powerpack and drive train at high strain for long periods would seriously increase the maintenance factor.  They told BAE what improvements they wanted, and out of this came the production version of the EIFV.

The Production EIFV

     The first thing BAE did was to address the power problem, replacing the engine with a compatible 400-horsepower 6V53TIA turbocharged diesel.  The suspension also had to be further strengthened, as did the shock absorbers.  This fix was almost magical, as it addressed pretty much every deficiency the Egyptians had identified.  The standard armor package remained the same, but AOI (Arab Organization for Industrialization) devised an appliqué armor package that greatly increases armor protection to the sides and also improves frontal armor protection.  Lugs for ERA have been added to progressively more EIFVs (and other Egyptian armored vehicles). An air conditioner was fitted, as well as a collective NBC system.

     AOI (the parent agency of the ETF) has identified some possible future modifications for EIFV, including an NBC overpressure system, firing ports in the sides and rear of the vehicle, and a hunter/killer-type observation system.  The firing ports would be fitted either two (more probable) or three per side, with one in the rear door.  Another possibility is revised passenger seating, with the seats going down the center of the vehicle. A further enlargement of fuel tankage is also possible, with some fuel being housed in the walls of the crew compartment.

Twilight 2000 Notes: Though most EIFVs in the Twilight 2000 timeline were of the Production type mentioned above, a few later examples were of the Original specifications.  Extra appliqué armor is relatively rare.

Vehicle

Price

Fuel Type

Load

Veh Wt

Crew

Mnt

Night Vision

Radiological

EIFV (Original)

$204,275

D, A

1 ton

17.7 tons

3+6

10

Passive IR (D, C, G), Image Intensifier (G, C), Thermal Imager (G)

Shielded

EIFV (Production)

$204,475

D, A

1 ton

17.7 tons

3+6

10

Passive IR (D, C, G), Image Intensifier (G, C), Thermal Imager (G)

Shielded

EIFV (Production w/Appliqué)

$205,467

D, A

1 ton

18.1 tons

3+6

10

Passive IR (D, C, G), Image Intensifier (G, C), Thermal Imager (G)

Shielded

EIFV (Future)

$234,475

D, A

1 ton

17.8 tons

3+6

10

Passive IR (D, C, G), Image Intensifier (G, C), Thermal Imager (G, C)

Shielded

EIFV (Future w/Appliqué)

$235,467

D, A

1 ton

18.2 tons

3+6

10

Passive IR (D, C, G), Image Intensifier (G, C), Thermal Imager (G, C)

Shielded

Vehicle

Tr Mov

Com Mov

Fuel Cap

Fuel Cons

Config

Susp

Armor

EIFV (Original)

125/87

27/21

454

166

Trtd

T3

TF11  TS8  TR6Sp  HF8  HS6  HR4*

EIFV (Production)

140/98

30/24

454

193

Trtd

T3

TF11  TS8  TR6Sp  HF8  HS6  HR4*

EIFV (Production w/Appliqué)

138/97

30/24

454

196

Trtd

T3

TF11  TS8  TR6Sp  HF10Sp  HS9Sp  HR5

EIFV (Future)

139/47

30/24

492

195

Trtd

T3

TF11  TS8  TR6Sp  HF8  HS6  HR4*

EIFV (Future w/Appliqué)

137/96

29/24

492

198

Trtd

T3

TF11  TS8  TR6Sp  HF10Sp  HS9Sp  HR5

Vehicle

Fire Control

Stabilization

Armament

Ammunition

EIFV (Original/Production)

+2

Fair

M-242 25mm ChainGun, M-240C, 2xTOW II ATGM Launchers

600x25mm, 3600x7.62mm, 6xTOW II ATGM

EIFV (Future)

+3

Fair

M-242 25mm ChainGun, M-240C, 2xTOW II ATGM Launchers

600x25mm, 3600x7.62mm, 6xTOW II ATGM

*Roof and belly armor is 3.