BTR-90 on static display
TypeArmored personnel carrier
Place of originRussia
Service history
In service2008-present[1]
WarsRusso-Ukrainian War
Production history
No. built12[1]-139[2]
Mass20.9 tonnes (23.0 short tons; 20.6 long tons)
Length7.64 m (25 ft 1 in)
Width3.20 m (10 ft 6 in)
Height2.98 m (9 ft 9 in)
Crew3 (+7 infantry)

ArmorWelded steel with optional ERA modules
30 mm Shipunov 2A42 cannon (500 rounds)
7.62 mm PKT machine gun (2000 rounds), 9M113 Konkurs ATGM, one AGS-17D 30 mm automatic grenade launcher (400 rounds).
Engineturbocharged diesel
510 hp (380 kW)
Power/weight24 hp/tonne (18 kW/tonne)
Suspensionwheeled 8×8
800 km (500 mi)
Maximum speed 100 km/h (62 mph)
9 km/h (5.6 mph) swimming

BTR-90 (GAZ-5923) (Russian: бронетранспортёр, romanizedBronetransportyor, lit.'Armoured Transporter') is an 8×8 wheeled armored personnel carrier developed in Russia, designed in 1993 and first shown publicly in 1994. It is a larger version of the BTR-80 vehicle, fitted with a BMP-2 turret.

Armour protection is improved compared with the BTR-80, giving protection from 14.5 mm projectiles over the frontal arc. It is armed with a 2A42 30 mm auto cannon, a coaxial 7.62 mm PKT machine gun, an 9M113 Konkurs ATGM, as well as an AGS-17D 30 mm automatic grenade launcher.

Limited numbers have been produced and are in service with the National Guard of Russia.


The development of the BTR-90 was carried out at the Arzamas Machine Building Plant (AMZ), a subsidiary of the Military Industrial Company. Development commenced in the early 1990s, with the first prototype completed and displayed to the public in 1994. The vehicle was intended to be used by mechanized units of the Russian army, as well as marine units of the Russian Navy, as a vehicle for providing fire support, transportation of personnel, surveillance, reconnaissance, and patrolling tasks. A wide range of vehicles suiting various requirements can be developed on the basis of the BTR-90 chassis.[3]

The vehicle is designed to be highly mobile and maneuverable in all terrain, while providing a high level of protection for its crew and passengers. The BTR-90 is fitted with a gun turret identical to the one used on the BMP-2.[citation needed]


The BTR-90 has a pointed nose, somewhat similar to that of the LAV-25.[citation needed] The hull is made of welded steel armour plate, and is slightly larger and higher than the BTR-80, from which it is developed.

A turbo charged, liquid cooled, multi-fuel diesel engine is used, which can develop 510 bhp. The vehicle has eight-wheel drive and has an automatic reversible hydro mechanical transmission, which is capable of providing different speeds to each side of the vehicle. It has duplicated electrical and compressed air engine start systems. The wheels are utilized with independent torsion-bar suspension and the traverse arms have high capacity telescopic hydraulic shock absorbers.[4]

Communication equipment installed in the BTR-90 include an R-163-50U radio set for external communications, an R-163UP receiver, and an R-174 intercom device for communication between the crew members.


The commander and gunner are accommodated in a fighting compartment in the turret. This compartment houses a BPK-3-42 gunner's day/night sight and a 1P-13 commander's optical sight.[5] Optionally, a BPK-M thermal imaging sight can be fitted in this compartment as the gunner's sight.[3]

The driver is located somewhat to the middle of the hull, just in front of the turret. The troop compartment is located behind the driver's position and the turret. The engine compartment is at the rear of the hull.

Hatches are provided on the top of the turret and hull, and side doors are available on the middle of the vehicle. These are designed to allow quick dismounting and boarding of troops even while the vehicle is on the move.

The eight wheels are located as two sets, with two pairs at the front of the hull and two pairs at the rear. Split side doors are located between these two sets of wheels. The two forward pairs of wheels are utilized with power steering.[6]

Capabilities and features

The BTR-90 is capable of achieving a maximum speed of 100 km/h, and has cross-country driving ability comparable to that of tracked vehicles, with an average speed of 50 km/h.

The vehicle is fully amphibious and can negotiate water obstacles without any preparation. Two water jet propellers power the vehicle in water.[7] In water it can achieve a maximum speed of 9 km/h. It can enter and be deployed from amphibious assault ships from the water. The BTR-90 can be deployed by truck, rail and by water and air transportation means.

Its hydro mechanical transmission helps to increase its maneuverability by providing different speeds to each side of the vehicle. This allows the BTR-90 to have a low turning radius of 6 m. When turning with only the front four wheels, it has a turning radius of 14 m. It can cross up to 2.1 m wide trenches and can negotiate 60% gradients, 30% side slopes and 0.8 m vertical steps.[8]

The vehicle has an inner capacity of 12 cubic meters, and can carry a load of 7,000 kg. An air conditioning system can be added optionally. The commander has the ability to carry out all-round surveillance and can take full control of the weapons from the gunner. An onboard information control system (OICS) enables automatic control over the transmission, engine and other important parts of the BTR-90, and it is the first armoured personnel carrier to have such a system. A centralized tire pressure control system is available, and allows the vehicle to move even if four of its wheels are destroyed.[3]

Armour and protection

The armour of the BTR-90 comprises welded steel armour plates. The armour can withstand hits from 14.5 mm rounds over the frontal arc. The side armour can provide protection against large caliber machine gun fire and shrapnel.

Additional armoured plates can be installed on the vehicle to increase protection. Active protection methods can be used, such as explosive reactive armour. These can be added over the existing armour of the vehicle. To increase protection, periscopes are installed instead of windscreens and vision blocks.

Collective NBC (Nuclear, Biological and Chemical) protection is available which can protect the occupants from shock waves and penetrating radiation from nuclear attacks, radioactive dust, and bacteriological and chemical weapons.[citation needed]

Its combat tires are capable of enduring anti-personnel mine explosions and small arms fire. If the vehicle is damaged while afloat, a drainage system is capable of removing incoming water. The BTR-90 features an automatic fire fighting system, and a system for the remote laying of smoke screens. The smoke discharge system includes six smoke grenade launchers, three on each side of the vehicle.


The main gun of the BTR-90 is a 30 mm Shipunov 2A42 auto cannon. The vehicle carries an ammunition load of 500 rounds for this weapon.

A 7.62 mm PKT coaxial machine gun with 2,000 rounds and a 30 mm AGS-17 automatic grenade launcher are the secondary armaments of the BTR-90.

A guided missile system is available for engaging armoured targets. This consists of four 9M113 Konkurs missiles mounted on the turret. The launching unit is detachable, and can be used to launch missiles from the ground.[4]

All the weapons are mounted on the turret and are assisted by a fire control system.[9] The fire control system allows the weapons to be used while the vehicle is moving, and in all weather conditions. The turret can be traversed 360 degrees with an elevation range of −5 to +75 degrees.[8] The vehicle's weaponry allows it to engage targets at ranges up to 4 km. Helicopters and fortifications can be engaged at ranges up to 2.5 km.

In addition to the vehicle's weapons, its occupants have the ability to fire their weapons through available firing ports and hatches, increasing its firepower.


A prototype designated BTR-90M was built with a larger turret derived from the BMP-3, mounting a coaxial low-velocity 2A70 100mm rifled gun/missile launcher system (which can fire conventional shells or laser beam-riding 9M117 anti-tank missiles (ATGM), such as AT-10 Stabber), a 30mm Shipunov 2A72 cannon, and a 7.62mm PKT machine gun. The BTR-90M was first displayed publicly in 2001, and is not currently in service.

Another variant of the BTR-90 was produced with the low pressure 120 mm 2S9 Nona weapon, as with the BTR-80 Nona-SVK.

Service history

Limited numbers have been produced and are in service with the National Guard of Russia.[citation needed]

In October 2011, the Ministry of Defence refused to buy the BTR-90 and did not include them in the list of the state program of armament until 2020, and waived exports for the BTR-90.[10]

Subsequently, the Russian army chose to assemble a large number of BTR-82A. The combat effectiveness has already increased significantly, and it is derived from the BTR-80. The development cost for BTR-82A is omitted and the production cost is cheaper, making the less advanced BTR-90 even less likely to change its fate. The 2015 Moscow Victory Parade exposed the next-generation VPK-7829 Bumerang wheeled armored vehicle, and officially announced that the BTR-90 program could no longer be resurrected.[citation needed]

On October 13, 2023, a video was posted on X (formally Twitter) showing a BTR-90 operating in what is believed to be near Avdiivka, Donetsk Oblast area in Ukraine.[11][12][better source needed] On December 11, 2023, a video was posted on X showing the first visually confirmed Russian loss of a BTR-90, abandoned by the Russians in the Avdiivka sector.[13][better source needed]


See also

Comparable vehicles


  1. ^ a b Russia transfers experimental BTR-90 'Rostok' IFV from museum to Ukraine. Army Recognition. 16 October 2023.
  2. ^
  3. ^ a b c "BTR-90". Archived from the original on 2001-07-24. Retrieved 2001-07-24.((cite web)): CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  4. ^ a b "BTR-90". Archived from the original on 2014-02-23. Retrieved 2008-09-28.
  5. ^ "BTR-90". russian.power.rf. Archived from the original on 2016-12-20. Retrieved 2016-12-04.
  6. ^ "BTR-90". Archived from the original on 24 September 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-28.
  7. ^ "BTR-90". September 3, 2000. Archived from the original on December 31, 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-28.
  8. ^ a b "BTR-90". Archived from the original on 2008-07-06. Retrieved 2008-09-28.
  9. ^ "BTR-90". Archived from the original on 19 September 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-28.
  10. ^ "Минобороны РФ отказалось закупать бронетранспортеры БТР-90 - Интерфакс". 2011-10-27. Archived from the original on 2012-03-03. Retrieved 2013-11-16.
  11. ^ "A very rare Russian BTR-90 wheeled IFV first spotted on the battlefield, allegedly near Avdiivka, Donetsk oblast". 2023-10-13. Retrieved 2023-10-15.
  12. ^ Roblin, Sébastien (October 19, 2023). "Rare Prototype BTR-90 Vehicle Seen in Combat in Ukraine". Popular Mechanics. Retrieved 2023-11-03.
  13. ^ "". X (formerly Twitter). Retrieved 2023-12-11. ((cite web)): External link in |title= (help)