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Type 10 Hitomaru
JGSDF Type10 tank 20120527-16.JPG
JGSDF Type10 Tank of the 1st Armored Training Unit, Eastern Army Combined Brigade. In Camp Takeyama, Japan.
Type Main battle tank
Place of origin  Japan
Service history
In service 2012–present
Production history
Manufacturer Mitsubishi Heavy Industries
Unit cost ¥954 million; $11.3 million (2010)
Produced 2010 -
Number built 13 (2011: FY 2010)
68 (FY 2011~2015 planning estimate)
Weight 43.25 tonnes (standard) 48 tonnes (fully)
Length 9.485 m
Width 3.24 m
Height 2.30 m
Crew 3 (commander, gunner and driver)

Armor Nano-crystal steel (nor Triple Hardness Steel), Modular ceramic composite armor, Light weight upper armor.
120 mm L44 smoothbore cannon, built by Japan Steel Works, Ltd
M2HB 12.7 mm machine gun
Type 74 7.62 mm machine gun
Engine 4-stroke cycle V8 Diesel engine
1200 hp/2300 rpm
Power/weight 27 hp/tonne
Transmission Continuously variable transmission (Hydraulic Mechanical Transmission)
Suspension Hydropneumatic Active suspension
440 km
Speed Forward: 70 km/h
Backward: 70 km/h[1]

The Type 10 (10式戦車 Hitomaru-shiki sensha?) is a 4th-generation main battle tank that the Japan Ground Self Defense Force has been equipped with, and boasts significant enhancements in its capability to respond to anti-tank warfare, mobile strikes, special operations force attacks, and other contingencies.[2]


The TK-X (MBT-X) project aims to produce the new Type 10 main battle tank, to replace or complement the existing Type 74 and Type 90 main battle tanks that are currently in service with the Japan Ground Self Defense Force. Development began in the 1990s, and production is expected to start in 2010–2011. A prototype was revealed on February 13, 2008 at the Technology Research and Development Institute (TRDI) in Sagamihara. Heavy emphasis was placed on C4I capabilities as well as on performance, firepower, protection and mobility.[3]

The use of modular components significantly improves the side armor compared to the Type 90. The Commander's Panoramic Sight has been moved to the right and is located at a higher position than the Type 90, giving the commander a wide range of view.

According to a GlobalSecurity report, the vehicle is expected to be armed with a new 120 mm smoothbore gun developed by Japan Steel Works, who also license-produce the Rheinmetall L44 120mm gun for the Type 90 MBT. There is an option for longer barrels of 50 and 55 calibers (L50, L55). The gun will fire newly developed armor-piercing ammunition, but is also compatible with all standard 120 mm NATO ammunition.[4]

The vehicle's armor consists of modular sections, providing the ability to mount varying degrees of protection depending on the mission profile as well as weight requirements. Vehicle weight is about 40 tonnes with the base configuration, and 48 tonnes when fully equipped. The prototype featured in 2008 at TRDI weighed 44 tonnes.[4]

The development costs as of 2008 are approximately JPY ¥48,400M (approximately US$ $447M). Each unit is expected to cost approximately ¥700M ($6.5M).[4]

The Japanese Ministry of Defense formally acknowledged the Type 10 in December 2009. In 2010, the Japanese Ministry of Defense placed a ¥12,400M order for thirteen Type 10 tanks (Unit cost: ¥954M).[5]

These Type 10 tanks entered JGSDF service in January, 2012.

Other features are as follows;

  • Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)[6] that allows the tank to reach 70 km/h forward as well as reverse.
  • Autoloader with crew of three (Commander and gunner in the turret, driver in the hull).
  • Hydropneumatic active suspension,[6] which allows it to adjust its stance and absorbs recoil when firing.
  • Day/night sights mounted around the turret, providing a full 360° coverage as well as providing input to the C4I system.[4]

The most remarkable characteristic of the Type 10 tank lies in its C4I function (command, control, communications, computers, and intelligence). This can be incorporated into the JGSDF network to enable sharing of information among tanks, as well as connected to the infantry’s outdoor computer network “Regiment Command Control System”(ReCS) to facilitate integrated military operations with the infantry troops.[2]

On 4 January 2014, sources revealed that Turkey was interested in signing a joint development deal of tank engines based on the Type 10's engine. The technology of the Type 10's engine allows it to move backwards at a speed of 70 km/h (43 mph).[7] The engine was to power the Turkish Altay indigenous tank. However, negotiations broke down and the deal was "off the agenda" by March 2014. Reasons included Japan's stringent arms export ban laws, the intention of Turkey to attempt to export the Altay, and Japan’s reluctance to license the joint engine.[8]


See also


  1. JGSDF Fuji School Camp Fuji Opened 56 anniversary announce
  2. 2.0 2.1 Introduction of the aircraft Type 10 tank -Japanese Ministry of Defense, Japan Defense Focus No.33 Column, Oct 2012
  3. Japanese Ministry of Defense Technology Research and Development Institute (TRDI)
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Type 10 MBT-X Prototype (TK-X)
  5. Based on the production of thirteen Type 10 tanks during FY2010
  6. 6.0 6.1 Accelerating Defence Acquisition: What Defence Can Learn From the World of Motorsport -RUSI Defence Systems, june 2008, p. 81,p. 82'
  7. Japan is looking to develop an engine for main battle tank in collaboration with Turkey -, 7 January 2014
  8. Japan Deal Scrapped, Turkey Looking for Tank Engine -, 5 March 2014


External links

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