The People’s Liberation Army Ground Force (PLAGF) currently utilizes the squad as its basic tactical unit on the battlefield. PLAGF platoons are typically composed of three to four squads, with each squad containing nine soldiers. A Squad Leader (SL) typically holds the rank of Sergeant (SGT).

Publicly available information indicates the composition of a squad depends heavily on the classification of the Combined Arms Brigade (CA-BDE) to which it is assigned. The PLAGF currently operates three classes of CA-BDEs: light, medium, and heavy.


The PLAGF currently maintains four types of light CA-BDEs: motorized, airborne, mountain, and amphibious. While the exact composition of airborne, mountain, and amphibious BDEs remain unclear, motorized CA-BDEs are well understood. Squads within motorized companies are typically composed of nine men, although the task organization (TASKORG) may fluctuate in specialty platoons. Individual squads are well-armed, yet understandably reliant on larger elements for sustained operations.

In contrast to armored or mechanized formations, squads within motorized units solely use their vehicles for transportation and not as a direct-fire platform to engage the enemy. As a result of this doctrine, motorized squads typically utilize the Dongfeng CSK-131, CSK-141, CSK-181, EQ2102, or FAW-MV3 for transportation.


The PLAGF currently maintains one type of medium CA-BDE: mechanized.


The PLAGF currently maintains one type of heavy CA-BDE: armored.