A dozen life-saving Bushmasters are going into production in Bendigo for export to the Netherlands, after the country’s Ministry of Defence ordered new vehicles from Thales Australia.
The vehicles will complement the 86 Bushmasters previously purchased by the Dutch customer between 2006 and 2009, and will be delivered by the middle of 2016.
Thales Australia CEO Chris Jenkins said, “The Bushmaster has proven itself on operations with the Dutch military in Afghanistan, and is a vital component of their Light Brigade”.
“This export order shows their continuing confidence in the Bushmaster, its ability to protect troops in theatre and save lives,” Mr Jenkins said.
“It’s also a tribute to the unique skills and in-depth expertise we have at our Bushmaster production facility in Bendigo, Victoria.
“Generating exports like this is good for us, good for our many local suppliers, and good for the economy as well.”
The troop carrier variants will be fitted with additional composite armour, remote weapon stations and Thales market-leading SOTAS intercom system.
The Dutch order (value confidential) follows other Bushmaster exports to Japan and Jamaica over the past 18 months.