The multi-billion dollar investment in Army’s close-combat vehicles has reached a significant milestone with six prototype test and evaluation vehicles from the project’s two shortlisted tenderers ready to rumble.
CAPTION: Hanwa’s Redback, left, and, Rheinmetall’s Lynx infantry fighting vehicles as delivered to Defence for test and evaluation for Project LAND 400 Phase 3. Photos supplied by Defence.
Project LAND 400 Phase 3, valued at up to $27.1billion will provide the Army with an advanced infantry fighting vehicle capability.
Hanwha Defense Australia and Rheinmetall Defence Australia have each delivered three prototype vehicles – two for test and evaluation activities and one for blast testing – as part of a two-year risk mitigation activity.
Minister for Defence Linda Reynolds said the delivery of the prototype vehicles was a crucial step in the project, allowing Defence to assess the shortlisted tenderers’ performance claims, focusing on the areas of highest technical risk.
“These significant activities include Australian soldiers participating in user evaluation and testing, with a particular focus on the armour, firepower and mobility of the platforms,” Minister Reynolds said.
“The risk mitigation activity will undertake important analysis on each vehicle’s ability to integrate with other key ADF land, sea and air capabilities, including amphibious lift.
“Infantry fighting vehicles are a state-of-the-art tracked armoured vehicle, capable of carrying six soldiers in addition to a crew of three.
“These advanced vehicles will provide increased protection, mobility, and firepower for the ADF.”
The project will acquire up to 450 infantry fighting vehicles and a manoeuvre-support-vehicle capability of up to 17 vehicles.
Minister Reynolds said the risk mitigation activity would include detailed testing and evaluation of the tendered vehicles and provide Defence with the objective quality evidence it would need to inform a government decision in 2022.
“When delivered, the infantry fighting vehicle will allow Army to successfully sustain mounted close-combat operations against emerging and future threats as part of the joint force.”