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29 Dec 14. Foxhound production drawing to an end. DESIDER magazine reported in the December issue that GDLS is close to finalising the Foxhound contract five years after the vehicle was conceived from a clean sheet of paper by Force Protection and Ricardo. In that time 400 were built with 60,000kms of reliability trials were held, together with two and half years of operational service, where 90% reliability was achieved. As Army 2020 takes shape the first 376 vehicles will return to GDELS Telford Plant where they will be upgrade to meet the new requirements which have already been embedded in the final 24 vehicles. These Trials, which tested growth and reliability at the same time, enabled these vehicles to be completed in a12 month period. GDELS aims to complete the uplift programme within 18 months. (Source: U.K. MoD desider)
29 Dec 14. Brazil set to export APCs again with Lebanese Guarani order. Brazil is to export 10 6×6 VBTP-MR Guarani amphibious medium armoured personnel carriers for use by the Lebanese Army, sources have told IHS Jane’s. The batch is part of a wider deal secured by Iveco Defence Vehicles of Italy that also includes delivery to Lebanon of 4×4 armoured vehicles and unprotected vehicles. The Brazilian vehicle is branded by the Italian armoured vehicles maker as VBTP (Viatura Blindada de Transporte de Pessoal, Personnel Transport Armoured Vehicle). The contract for the VBTP acquisition has yet to be signed, the sources added. The 6×6 vehicles are to be produced in Brazil by Iveco Latin America at its plant in Sete Lagoas, State of Minas Gerais, and dispatched directly to Lebanon without armament. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
29 Dec 14. BAE Systems delivers last Terrier CEV. The Combat Vehicles (UK) division of BAE Systems delivered the last of 60 Terrier combat engineer vehicles (CEVs) to the British Army in December 2014, marking the end of AFV production at its last UK production facility at Newcastle-upon-Tyne. This site is now owned by Pearson Engineering, with BAE Combat Vehicles (UK) concentrated at its Telford facility, which was originally operated by GKN Defence. Combat Vehicles (UK) has moved all of the jigs and tooling for the Terrier CEV to Telford, but any future production is considered likely to be undertaken overseas. The Terrier CEV has had a protracted development period and achieved its final in service date in mid-2013, with 20 production standard vehicles and 12 trained crews ready for deployment by the British Army’s Royal Engineers. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
BATTLESPACE Comment: End of a long era, exactly 100 years after the first tank was produced, the last armoured vehicle rolls off a UK production line.
Millbrook, based in Bedfordshire, UK, makes a significant contribution to the quality and performance of military vehicles worldwide. Its specialist expertise is focussed in two distinct areas: test programmes to help armed services and their suppliers ensure that their vehicles and systems work as the specification requires; and design and build work to upgrade new or existing vehicles, evaluate vehicle capability and investigate in-service failures. Complementing these is driver and service training and a hospitality business that allows customers to use selected areas of Millbrook’s remarkable facilities for demonstrations and exhibitions.