Rossiyskaya Gazeta newspaper cited Alexander Denisov, general director of the Russian company High Precision Complex, as saying that state tests of the country's state-of-the-art air defense system Pantsir-SM are already under way.
He said that research and development work pertaining to the Pantsir-SM is due to be completed in 2019.
Denisov touted the Pantsir-SM a "completely new system" which he said will exceed the previous version, the Pantsir-S1, by up to two times in terms of combat capability.
Rossiyskaya Gazeta also cited open sources as saying that the Pantsir-SM is due to be equipped with a new high-speed missile and that the range of detection and destruction of targets will increased by about a half.
The Pantsir-SM is expected to be capable of detecting a target at a distance of 75 kilometers and destroying it at a distance of 40 kilometers. As for the Pantsir-S1, these figures stand at 40 kilometers and 20 kilometers, respectively.
As for the Pantsir-SM's new missile, it will have "good" characteristics and can even be used by previous Pantsir versions, according to Denisov.
The Pantsir-S1, codenamed by NATO as SA-22 Greyhound, is a short-to-medium range surface-to-air missile/gun system that first entered service with the Russian army in 2012.