In recent years, Iran's defense industry has been gaining momentum and actively pursuing exports.
Videos of testing the Chinese version of the globally renowned Iranian drone "Shahed-136" have emerged on Twitter. The drone, named Sunflower-200, underwent testing at a range in China, as reported by Sarbaz.kz.
The Sunflower-200 was first showcased at the "Army-2023" exhibition in Russia and bears a striking resemblance to the Iranian Shahed and Geran drones.
According to social media discussions, the Sunflower-200 has a takeoff weight of 175 kg, compared to the Shahed-136's 240 kg. This allows the drone to take off more quickly and at steeper angles. Despite the weight reduction, the Chinese counterpart carries the same 40 kg warhead as the Iranian drone. This could be attributed to the active use of new composite materials and more powerful Chinese engines, in which China possesses greater technical potential than Iran.
It is also claimed that the Sunflower-200 has a fuselage length of 3.2 meters and a wingspan of 2.5 meters. Various sources mention an attack range of 1500 to 2000 kilometers, while the cruising speed ranges from 160 to 220 km/h. These technical specifications are more or less in line with those of the Shahed and Geran drones.
The emergence of the Chinese version highlights the active technology exchange among countries subject to Western and U.S. sanctions.