A new version of a relatively rare and heavily customized Chekan truck, allegedly owned by a Russian state-sponsored private military contractor Wagner, has been spotted at Russian positions near Bakhmut in the Donetsk region.
Russian state media released footage showing what appears to be a cargo variant of the Chekan truck. The vehicle is an upgraded variant of its existing Ural truck with adding armor cabin and cargo platform.
The Chekan, known popularly as Wagner’s wagon, is a mine-resistant, ambush protected vehicle (MRAP) build on Ural-432007-0111-31 chassis.
The first Mad Max-style vehicle was first spotted in Ukraine in June – but now the fighting force, bankrolled by Putin henchman Yevgeny Prigozhin, appears to be drafting in more.
The Wagner Group, also known as PMC Wagner, is a Russian paramilitary organization. It is variously described as a private military company, a network of mercenaries, or a de facto private army of Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The New York Times describes Wanger company as really an arms-length unit of the Russian Ministry of Defence or Russia’s military intelligence service in disguise, which is used by the Russian government in conflicts where deniability is called for, as its forces are trained on Ministry of Defense installations.