The Defense Acquisition Program Administration initially sought the domestic supply of a powerpack, which comprises transmission and engine, for the second round of mass production, in preference to the German-designed one used for the previous production run, which began in 2013.
But the indigenous transmission, produced by S&T Dynamics, failed in reliability and durability testing.
|The K-2 main battle tank produced by South Korea is shown in this photo provided by the Army. (Yonhap)|
In a report to the National Assembly's defense committee for an annual audit, the DAPA said it is pushing for the supply of transmissions from a foreign contractor. It plans to pick a domestically-produced engine for the powerpack.
"The second mass production and deployment will be completed between 2019-2020" if the plan is approved by a government defense industry committee slated to decide in January next year, added the DAPA.
The K-2 Black Panther is South Korea's new signature battle tank, and is designed to replace the aging K-1 battle tanks. It is one of the most advanced main battle tanks in the world.
South Korea hopes to export the K-2, with one tank priced at around $7.5 million. (Yonhap)