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By Julian Nettlefold

One of the problems of DVD is that it has become too large to cover all the exhibits. Luckily this year, BATTLESPACE was aided again by Rory Gammell who covered the Off-Road area. Access to the Show was much improved this year but there were continuing problems with the Safety Briefing, which although vital, does leave room for improvement. Visitors have limited time at DVD and some were kept waiting on the first day in a queue which stretched right into the Exhibit Hall. One development for 2009, suggested by one member of staff, would be to have the Safety Briefing online so that visitors could watch the safety Brief when registering for the Show and not receive a Pass unless confirmation of seeing the Safety Brief is confirmed. This would apply to Exhibitors, Press and Visitors alike.


Whereas last year’s centrepiece was the MPPV Vehicle Requirement now fulfilled by the Mastiff and Ridgback vehicles, this years DVD centred on the OUVS Requirement.

Throughout the year we have been visiting companies developing vehicles for the OUVS Requirement. We started the year trialling the International MXT vehicle at Millbrook. An enhanced MXT was back at DVD 2008 with new Arvin Meritor independent suspension. We will be testing this vehicle later in the year. (See: BATTLESPACE MILITARY VEHICLE NEWS Vol. 7 Issue 01, 10 Jan 2008, BATTLESPACE TAKES THE INTERNATIONAL MXT-MV FOR A DRIVE).

We continued our tour to Italy where IVECO briefed us on its range of military vehicles for OUVS including the LMV. (See: BATTLESPACE MILITARY VEHICLE NEWS Vol. 7 Issue 03, 20 June 2008 AND DVD PREVIEW, IVECO DEFENCE GOES GLOBAL).

We continued our tour to Babcock’s Devonport facility, where our Report is shown below. (See: BABCOCK MARINE –ENGINEERING LAND SYSTEMS).

We have been promised a trip to Mowag in Switzerland to see the DURO range of vehicles for OUVS and to France to see the Renault Sherpa range.

We managed to take a drive in the new Oshkosh Sand Cat vehicle developed by Oshkosh in association with Plasan Sasa armour using a Ford 350 chassis. Its ride and handling were excellent over the Off-Road course.

The Sand Cat, previously called the Caracal, is an armored patrol vehicle built on a Ford commercial chassis cab modified by Manning Equipment offering a level of armored protection to drivers and passengers alike. The Sand Cat protects against all types of 7.62 AP ammo, mines, and IED threats. In addition to lower initial costs, parts and service can be provided globally, wherever Ford has a presence. With a 325 horsepower engine, automatic transmission, excellent performance profile and road handling features, and spacious interior, the Sand Cat is designed for easy manoeuvrability and can be used in evacuation procedures, while blending into urban environments.

Land Rover

Land Rover was exhibiting its latest version of the military Defender range with the new engine based on the Ford transit engine coupled to a new six-speed box.

Defender´s all new 2.4litre Diesel engine produces a class-leading 360Nm of Torque (90 percent of peak power is on tap from less than 2,200rpm to over 4,350rpm) and enhances its legendary capability yet again. In fact, not only is this new engine designed to be fully compliant with EU4 emissions legislation, a unique engine tune has been developed to allow it to tolerate the variable quality, high-sulphur fuels to be found across developing markets. It is also up to 30 percent quieter than the outgoing diesel engine.


The Defender´s all-new six-speed transmission. Specially developed for heavy-duty applications, it is lighter, stronger and also provides smoother on-road performance, slicker gear changes and improved fuel consumption. Improved gearshift positioning offers greater comfort and ease-of-use. A lower first gear reduces crawl speed and combines with the increased engine Torque to ma

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