China Unveils High Speed Amphibious Capability

China recently unveiled a new four-wheel drive prototype vehicle intended to assist amphibious operations. (NORINCO)

Being able to rapidly move from a ship to the beach and then inland has significant benefits. It reduces exposure while moving to the shore and also decreases turnaround time, allowing a vehicle to move more supplies ashore in less time.

The North China Institute of Vehicle Research recently offered details of a four wheel drive high-speed amphibious vehicle with these capabilities. The test prototype has wheels that retract into hull recesses to reduce drag and water jet propulsion. The hull form allows the vehicle to hydroplane to achieve higher water speed, and it transitions to land by operating on its four wheels. The vehicle is expected to be able to perform on rivers, bays and in the littorals, although details on its speed, freeboard, range, sea state operation and final development status have not been released.