|Classification:||Armored Core NEXT|
|Eras Active:||Economic War|
Built sometime after the end of the Lynx War, the LATONA is a lightweight craft specializing in energy defense. It terms of sheer mobility, it outclasses the SOLUH and is comparable to the TYPE-LAHIRE. While boasting incredible speed, it suffers from very low Ballistics defense, relying on its improved Y01 PA system and mobility to keep harm out of reach or to simply stay out of its way.
While Interior's Y01-TELLUS model and its offshoots (the Y02-ALBIREO and Y06-AURORA) were proven to be effective units, Interior realized that with the development of new, high-speed models by other Companies, their slower machines would be decimated in the increasingly fast-paced battlefield. To remedy this, Interior undertook an extensive study on how to effectively decrease weight on their NEXTs without sacrificing what Interior models are known for: energy efficiency, high energy defense and energy weapon compatibility. The study produced the Y09-RIGEL, a tank-based NEXT. While the unit itself was not widely used, it became the starting point for the development of the LATONA, and the final product met all their goals: the unit was light, energy efficient in airborne combat, and had the extra supply of energy to allow use of almost everything in the Union's lethal arsenal.
The key for LATONA's design came from the RIGEL's powerplant, the new I-RIGEL/G generator developed by TORUS. Being funded by Interior, TORUS developed the generator unit according to their specifications. The result was a compact, middleweight generator wich, while not having output enough to challenge the venerable S08-MAXWELL and the infamous AALIYAH/G, gave the Union a generator with high EN output, great storage capacity and, most importantly as PA was the Interior's best defense against solid weapons, a high KP output.
From there, the LATONA was developed around the generator. Using lightweight materials, and superb engineering methods, the LATONA boasts legs with load capacity exceeding that of lighter middleweight legs while having the lightness and speed of a lightweight. The aerodynamic fins on the core unit stabilizes the NEXT in flight and its arms feature a very high energy weapon compatibility. The boosters were an evolution of TELLUS's previous boosters, now having lighter weight while retaining its efficiency.
These incredible achievements did not come without drawbacks. While the TELLUS's rigid construction proved to be somewhat effective against solid shell weapons, the LATONA dispenses everything of the sort to save weight and is very vulnerable to solid shell weapons, particularly those fielded by GA, its fiercest rival. In addition, while its Primal Armor rectification has been somewhat increased than the TELLUS, it is still considerably lower than other NEXTs of its class, many of them relying almost solely on PA to survive. While the unit was a success, it takes considerable skills to operate and even then, the NEXT is still considered rather slow for a lightweight, particularly when compared to Omer's TYPE-LAHIRE. Despite this, Interior's very own Wynne D. Fanchon saw fit to operate the NEXT to its full capacity, ultimately earning her Rank 3 in Collared's ranking.
The design has also an offshoot, called Y10-OPS. The unit remains exactly the same, with the exception of the arms, which now are powerful Hi-laser rifles weapon arms. Although no pilots use this design, the arm part is exploit by Francois Neris in his NEXT Buccaneer.