Chile showcases Korean-made KLTV182 4x4 armored vehicles

On 24 October 2023, Jung Han Hwang, the Deputy Minister of the Korean Embassy, accompanied by his advisor, Wonho Park, and the Defense Attaché, Lieutenant Colonel IM Jong-Ick Park, visited the 31st Marine Infantry Battalion (IM) Aldea of the Chilean Navy. The visit provided an opportunity to explore the institution's experience with Korean-made vehicles, including the Kia KLTV 4x4 armored vehicles, as well as 6x6 KM 250 and 4x4 KM 450 vehicles.
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The Korean Embassy delegation at the display of the KLTV182 (Picture source: Armada de Chile)

The Korean delegation toured the unit as part of a broader visit to various departments at the Talcahuano naval base, the main logistical facility of the Chilean Navy in the Biobío Region. The tour also included the Talcahuano industrial plant of Shipyards and Workshops of the Navy (Asmar), where they learned about the construction of the Almirante Viel icebreaker.

According to the Chilean Navy, the Asian authorities were welcomed at Fort O'Higgins by the commander of the IM Tumbes Base, Captain IM Julio Bustamante, along with the head of the Basic Training Center IM, Captain IM Pedro Nova, and the acting commander of the 31st IM Battalion Aldea, Captain IM Carlos Zañartu.

The visit included formal greetings, a presentation on the organization of the Expeditionary Amphibious Brigade (BAE), as well as a static display of Kia vehicles used by the Marine Corps, featuring the KLTV181 transport and KLTV182 reconnaissance vehicles acquired through a government-to-government agreement with the Korean Government's Commercial Office (Kotra). These vehicles were presented previously, as we told you on Army Recognition on 12 December 2022.

The KLTV181 vehicles arrived in December 2022 and were deployed to the Arauco province, an area under a state of constitutional emergency since May 2022 due to ongoing violent incidents and terrorist attacks. These vehicles were joined in the first half of 2023 by the reconnaissance version, KLTV182.

The KLTV181 is a light utility vehicle designed and manufactured by Kia Motors, has been in service since 2016, and originates from South Korea. The vehicle is highly versatile, with a mass of 5,700 kg and dimensions that vary in length from 4,900 mm, and a width of 2,195 mm. It can accommodate a crew of one driver and up to seven passengers. The vehicle's armor is made of Samyang Comtech Ceramic/Polymer Matrix Composites, meeting the STANAG 4569 Level 2 or Level 3 standards.

Under the hood, the Korean vehicle is powered by a Hyundai S2 D6EB 3.0L V6 diesel engine that delivers 225 horsepower. This gives the vehicle a power-to-weight ratio of 39.47 hp/t. The vehicle also features an 8-speed automatic transmission from Hyundai Powertech, and its 4x4 wheeled suspension ensures optimal mobility on diverse terrains. With a ground clearance of 410 mm, the Raycolt is well-suited for off-road conditions.

The Raycolt is not just about durability and mobility; it also offers significant operational range and speed. With a fuel capacity of 76 liters, it can cover distances of 640 km, and can reach a maximum speed of 130 km/h. The vehicle can be armed with a variety of weapons, including the K12, M60, and M240 machine guns, as well as Mk19 and K4 grenade launchers and the AT-1K Raybolt ATGM.

Both countries currently have an active Agreement on Cooperation in the Fields of Defense Industry and Logistical Support, signed in Santiago, Chile, on April 22, 2015. Its aim is to foster cooperation based on the principle of reciprocity, particularly in aspects related to the production and exchange of defense materials, enhancing logistical support capabilities between their Armed Forces. On September 13, 2023, the National Congress approved the Defense Cooperation Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Chile and the Government of the Republic of Korea, signed in Seoul on April 29, 2019. According to the text, the initiative aims to promote friendship ties in this area based on the principles of equality, reciprocity, mutual benefit, and respect for national laws.