Dubbed LCAT Mk2, this enhanced version « is reinforced on a number of points based on feedback from the French and Egyptian navies », Xavier Montazel, CNIM Defence and Maritime Division told Naval News.
The powerpack is 20% more powerful than the one installed in the LCAT Mk1 and made of four 1340 kw MTU engines. The dynamics of the vessel are also improved by the addition of a second foil forward. « This allows, with the power increase, to significantly increase the speed, going from 18 knots to 25 knots loaded, and from 30 knots to 35 knots once unladen ».
The LCAT Mk2 receives improved protection and armament systems. « We are now offering a version with two 20 mm remotely operated weapon systems located at the bow, as well as two 12.7 mm machine guns at the stern, compared to a mix of 12 .7 mm and 7.62 mm with the Mk1 version ». The wheelhouse has been extended and up-armored in order to protect the crew from potential attacks when the ship approaches the landing area.
With the Mk2 evolution, CNIM is clearly targeting the export market as France does not plan an upgrade program for the four EDA-R the French Navy commissioned between 2011 and 2012. « On the other hand, several foreign customers are now interested in high-speed amphibious vessels ».
« The LCAT Mk2 makes it possible to definitively position it as a direct competitor of the American LCAC for navies interested in high speed amphibious operations. It is still reserved for a few navies, but we are comparable in speed with an LCAC but with ease of use and maintenance cost that are much more lower ».
Xavier Montazel, head of CNIM Defense and Maritime Division
Technical characteristics of the LCAT Mk2
- Length / Width: 30 m / 12 m
- Draft at full load: 1 m
- Speed at full load / empty: 25 / 35 kts
- Normal / Maximum payload: 80 / 100 t
- Platform area: 127 m2
- Sea state: up to 5
- Weapons: 2 x 20 mm RCWS + 2 x 12.7 mm