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05 Oct 18. Jankel to attend AUSA 2018 in Washington DC. Jankel, world-class specialist in the design and manufacture of high-specification armored, light tactical and counter-terrorism vehicles with customized protection systems for defense, security and NGO’s worldwide, will be attending AUSA 2018. The Association of the United States Army (AUSA) exhibition, the largest Land Warfare tradeshow in North America, will be taking place in Washington DC, 8-10 October 2018.
US-based Jankel Tactical Systems (Jankel), aligned to the wider UK-based group, is already extremely well-established in North America. In 2018, JTS’s already strong Commercial Armoured Vehicle (CAV) business, increased growth by a tremendous 300%. This striking increase in sales is attributed to increased orders from Jankel’s core clients; the US Departments of Defense, US Department of State, the Canadian Department of National Defense, and Global Affairs Canada; all of whom support operations worldwide. In addition, Jankel secured new customer opportunities with the US Customs and Border Patrol, US Marshalls, and the US Drug Enforcement Agency.
Jankel’s growth in North America has focused on ‘Hot Formed Armored’ discreet platforms and the delivery to niche protection and high performance mobility requirements for platforms indigenous to the countries within which they operate; including the Chevrolet 3500 HD Suburban, Toyota Land Cruiser 79 Series Double Cab and Mercedes Sprinter 3500 XD.
Looking ahead, Jankel is focused on the continued expansion of their US business footprint. Future tactical vehicle growth in 2019 and beyond is projected to be strong. Launching the proven Jankel FOX family of Tactical Vehicles into Latin America and Africa supporting the US Combatant Command priorities for Security Assistance. Increased collaboration with the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA), as well as with Combatant Command’s Security Assistant branches, has led to numerous opportunities for the FOX family, where global fleet commonality across variants, proven performance, OEM parts and Jankel components is a vital strength of the brand.
In addition to their wide range of vehicle protection capabilities, Jankel is targeting the provision of specialist seating and survivability systems. Jankel Foreign Military Sales (FMS) programs increased significantly in 2018 with the provision of BLASTech Seating solutions for Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) and new production vehicles for US allied nations. This growth is only set to continue as the need for vehicle occupant survivability increases as a national priority within hostile environments. As such, the Jankel family of companies are continuing to invest in the product development of next generation of Blast Mitigation technology.
Dave Binnarr, Vice President of Defense Programs at Jankel said: “The USA continues to be a strong market focus for Jankel. Jankel has enjoyed great success here to date, further underlining the credibility of the products and services we offer. Without problems there wouldn’t be customers. Jankel’s business thrives off of our ability, experience, and willingness to solve our customers’ problems. Whether it’s providing a service, a product, or full cradle to grave program support, we look at every opportunity objectively. Our global footprint, agile business style, and partnerships allow us to aggressively address our customer’s capability gaps today and support their requirements of tomorrow. Jankel’s protection systems, manufactured in the USA, are in-service across multiple platforms, saving US lives today and into the future.” He added: “AUSA will be a great opportunity for Jankel to network further within the arena of US defense vehicle manufacturers and prime contractors.”
05 Oct 18. Arnold Defense explore exciting new concepts for their FLETCHER laser guided rocket system. Following the exceptional levels of interest expressed in the new FLETCHER Laser Guided Rocket Launcher system, Arnold Defense has been exploring a number of exciting ground and maritime-based concepts for their revolutionary new system.
The FLETCHER system, first unveiled a year ago in London at DSEI, has undergone highly successful test-firing and has now commenced initial low-rate production. With FLETCHER, Arnold Defense has extended the utility of their proven, highly capable rocket launcher from aviation platforms into the land environment. Using advanced rocket-guidance technology to meet the modern demands of land-based, mounted and dismounted asymmetric warfare, FLETCHER has been optimized for use by both special and conventional forces to provide surface-to-surface precision effect.
The wider concepts now being explored further expand FLETCHER’s utility into the arena of Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGV), naval and littoral platforms. The ability to mount FLETCHER on UGV will offer ground forces the capability to remotely support base or mobile defensive operations; giving considerably wider scope for the tactical siting of remotely operated, laser guided weapon systems, whilst significantly minimising exposure and risk to ground-based troops. Further to that, mounting FLETCHER on naval/littoral platforms will gift maritime troops a precision weapon system with a range of up to 5km that can be deployed and operated at a tactical level never previously available.
Jim Hager, President and CEO of Arnold Defense said “Since launching FLETCHER, Arnold Defense has exhibited the system widely on the international market, where it has garnered significant interest world-wide, especially from special operations units. Our rocket launchers are already internationally well-established on airborne platforms, so transitioning into the land and marine environments with FLETCHER is a natural progression”. He added: “These exciting new concepts will afford both land and maritime troops a transformational capability that has not previously been available without recourse to external air or aviation assets.”
04 Oct 18. Military Armoured Vehicles Market Set to Grow to $26.2bn by 2028, Says New Study. The new report, now available on ASDReports, evaluates the global military armoured vehicle market and forecasts its development between 2018 and 2028. The analysts believe that the Armoured Vehicle market will grow slowly but steadily over the forecast period as long term defence procurement programmes related to military armoured vehicles slow down. Whilst there are a number of programmes requiring new fleets of military armoured vehicle – The Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) Programme being a notable example – the study anticipates that the majority of spending over the next decade will be heavily focused on upgrading existing fleets of vehicles and their internal mechanisms. The report analyst commented “The arms race developing between east and west, has led Visiongain to publish this timey report. The Armoured Vehicle market is expected to flourish in the next few years because of Russian and Chinese advances and also because platform life cycle expiry is expected to feed through in the latter part of the decade driving growth to new heights. If you want to be part of this growing industry, then read on to discover how you can maximise your investment potential.” (Source: ASD Network)
02 Oct 18. China holds UGV competition with focus on autonomy, mobility. China’s investment in and development of unmanned ground vehicle (UGV) technology is increasingly geared towards enhancing the autonomy and mobility of the platforms, as shown during this year’s ‘Crossing Obstacles’ UGV competition. Participating in the competition, which was held from 12 to 23 September at a training ground in Beijing’s Changping District, were 61 ‘leading units’ (14 military and political colleges, 26 private enterprises, 10 state-owned enterprises, and 11 research institutes) and 136 teams, said China’s Ministry of National Defense (MND), pointing out that there were four categories and a total of 10 competition groups. The aim of this year’s contest, which saw a sharp rise in the number of participants, was to examine how the vehicles can navigate across extremely challenging terrain while simultaneously performing tasks. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
02 Oct 18. Turkmenistan parades Al Shibl APCs. Turkmenistan has displayed what appear to be newly acquired Al Shibl 2 wheeled armoured personnel carriers (APCs) in a parade to mark the country’s Independence Day on 27 October. Each of the eight Al Shibl 2s shown in the Turkmen capital Ashgabat was armed with what appeared to be a .50 calibre Browning M2 HB heavy machine gun in a roof-mounted protected weapon station.
The 4×4 vehicles, which are manufactured in Saudi Arabia, are designed to provide protected mobility for military personnel in low-intensity combat environments such as during patrol and reconnaissance missions, according to Jane’s Land Warfare Platforms: Armoured Fighting Vehicles.
The Al Shibl 2, which weighs 4.6 tonnes, has a longer wheelbase (3.18 m) than the Al Shibl 1 (2.31 m). That said, the vehicle, which has a top speed of 120 km/h, is powered by the same 228 hp engine as the Al Shibl 1. In addition to its crew of three, the vehicle can carry six fullyequipped troops. The Toyota Land Cruiser chassis is fitted with an all-welded steel armour body that provides the occupants with NATO STANAG 4569 Level K1 (5.56/7.62 mm NATO ball) protection against small arms fire, but higher protection levels are available, according to the manufacturer. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
02 Oct 18. US Army carries out AMPV testing. The US Army has completed a two-month programme field testing the service’s new Armoured Multi-Purpose Vehicle (AMPV). Soldiers from the 1st Cavalry Division teamed with the US Army Operational Test Command (USAOTC), to run through Limited User Tests (LUT). The LUT allows soldiers to provide feedback on the new capability while conducting realistic training scenarios in an operational environment.
‘The importance of conducting a limited user test and the process, is it allows the materiel developer to get feedback from soldiers in an operational environment,’ said Maj Jed Zaffke, a test officer with USAOTC’s Maneuver Test Directorate’s mounted test division.
‘We’re able to provide feedback to senior leaders to make decisions on that equipment which allows further progression of programmes as they field and develop new equipment,’ he added.
The AMPV will replace five variants of the Vietnam-era M113 armoured vehicle currently in use by Armoured Brigade Combat Teams (ABCT). The variants tested by the 2nd ABCT during trials was the Medical Treatment, Ambulance, General Purpose, Mortar, and Mission Command.
US Army documents state the AMPV will eventually account for 30% of an ABCTs tracked fleet, which also consists of Bradley Fighting Vehicles and M1A2 Abrams main battle tanks.
In April, prime contractor BAE Systems announced that it had now delivered all vehicles required for the programme’s engineering and manufacturing development (EMD) phase. The vehicle shares similar automotive components with the M109A7 howitzer and Bradley, while incorporating an improved chassis that boosts protection for troops.
BAE Systems was awarded a $1.2bn contract in 2014 for EMD and low-rate initial production phases of the AMPV programme. An initial $383m contract was awarded to supply 29 vehicles for the EMD phase.
A Milestone C decision is expected next year, which will pave the way for AMPV’s low-rate initial production (LRIP) to begin. The US Army’s FY 2019 budget already funds the second year of LRIP, which is set at 131 vehicles at $479m. An additional 66 vehicles have been requested using Overseas Contingency Operations funding. Total vehicle numbers could eventually reach nearly 3,000 vehicles with a cumulative cost over the programme’s life of over $12bn. (Source: Shephard)
01 Oct 18. Reuters reported yesterday that Humvee maker AM General is up for sale, sources say. AM General has put itself up for sale and has hired investment bank Macquarie Group Ltd to seek potential bidders in a deal that could value the builder of Humvee military vehicles at more than $2bn, people familiar with the matter said on Monday. Potential bidders include competitors in the military ground vehicle market, such as General Dynamics (GD.N), Oshkosh Corp (OSK.N) and BAE Systems PLC (BAES.L) according to two people familiar with the matter. Auto makers like FIAT Chrysler (FCHA.MI) and General Motors Co (GM.N) may also be potential buyers, one of the sources added. AM General and Macquarie did not immediately return a request for comment. General Dynamics and BAE declined to comment. Representatives for Oshkosh did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The South Bend, Indiana-based company is currently owned by private equity firms, including MacAndrews & Forbes Inc and The Renco Group Inc.
A possible sale of AM General follows a rash of deals over the past 18 months among defense contractors. But relatively fewer makers of defense equipment have gone on the auction block.
Last year, United Technologies Corp (UTX.N) acquired Rockwell Collins for $30bn, and in March, TransDigm Group (TDG.N) continued its acquisition spree with a $525mi deal for Extant Components Group. AM General could fetch about 10 times its annual earnings of $160m, one of the people said. The company’s favorable tax treatment because of its current status as a limited liability corporation, would allow a buyer to reduce the company’s taxable earnings for 15 years. That coupled with recent contract awards could push the ultimate value of the company to over $2bn in a sale. The sale, should it happen, comes as the U.S. Army is gearing up for a broad effort to modernize its forces, including seeking prototypes of its Next-Generation Combat Vehicle in fiscal year 2022.
Last month, AM General was awarded an Army contract for as many as 2,800 new M997A3 High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV) ambulances. The contract could be worth as much as $800m if all options were exercised, AM General said at the time.
Last year, the Pentagon awarded AM General a $550m contract to deliver HMMWVs for use as protected weapons carriers, cargo transporters and ambulances to Afghanistan, Iraq, Ukraine, Jordan, Slovenia, Bahrain, Columbia, Bosnia and Kenya as a part of a larger Foreign Military Sales agreement.
The sale of AM General which designs, engineers and manufactures specialized vehicles for military and commercial customers, offers an opportunity to purchase a prime contractor that delivers a finished product to the Pentagon, and not just an add-on system or service.
Mergers and acquisitions news service Dealreporter published news of the talks last week. (Source: glstrade.com/Reuters)
01 Oct 18. Textron Specialized Vehicles Inc., a Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) company, announces the addition of three new vehicles to its Textron Off Road Prowler™ Pro lineup. The new, six-passenger Prowler Pro Crew XT brings quiet power and performance to the multi-passenger market, while the new three- and six-passenger Ranch editions offer premium accessories and a custom Atomic Copper color for a more customized look.
“We continue to develop state-of-the-art Textron Off Road vehicles that meet a wide variety of enthusiasts’ needs,” said John Collins, Vice President, Consumer for Textron Specialized Vehicles. “The new Prowler Pro XT Crew builds off of the innovative Prowler Pro platform and continues the legacy Textron has instilled in all of its highly engineered brands.”
Similar to its three-seat counterpart, the Prowler Pro Crew XT offers quiet gas power and unmatched reliability, with the addition of a second row of seating. The vehicle is powered by a whisper-quiet, 50-horsepower, 812cc EFI engine offering plenty of power to not only haul six people, but also additional cargo or game. To complement the engine, vibration-reducing mounts and bushings were used, and a tuned exhaust utilizes a rubber isolator with the muffler to lessen exhaust noise.
As a true work partner, the Prowler Pro Crew XT offers all the comfort needed for tough tasks and long days. The vehicle has 10 inches of front and 9.5 inches of rear suspension travel, 10 inches of ground clearance, and 26-inch Pro Terrain tires for a comfortable ride for all occupants. A 2,000-pound towing capacity, 1,500-pound payload and 1,000-pound cargo box capacity allows the vehicle to easily haul six people along with all the gear needed for a long day on the hunt or in the field. For added versatility, the vehicle’s six-person bench seating features removable passenger seats for additional storage space inside the cab. Its customizable and password-protected speed control can be set to ensure ranch and farm hands stay safe while on the job.
For ease of maintenance, the Prowler Pro Crew XT has toolless service components with easy-access panels, so the vehicle can spend more time in the field or at the hunt camp. The vehicle comes pre-wired to easily add accessories, and its standard 75-amp alternator provides plenty of power to operate various accessories and implements at once.
The Prowler Pro Crew XT joins the three-passenger Prowler Pro XT as part of the lineup’s electronic power steering (EPS) offering. Both vehicles are available in Dynamic Charcoal and Fire Red. In addition, the new Prowler Pro Ranch Edition and Crew Ranch Edition feature Atomic Copper paint, premium cut & sewn seats, hard top, halogen headlight with LED accent, HD front and rear bumpers, 27-inch Maxxis® Bighorn 2.0 tires, and a 4,500-lb WARN® winch. Rounding out the lineup is a non-EPS Prowler Pro in Marsh Green.
The Textron Off Road Prowler Pro line is built in Thief River Falls, Minn. All vehicles are sold with a 12-month warranty and will arrive in dealerships this fall. For more information, visit a local Textron Off Road authorized dealer, go to TextronOffRoad.comor join the conversation on Textron Off Road’s Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram accounts. To learn more about the complete lineup of Textron Off Road ATVs and side-by-sides, visit textronoffroad.com.
28 Sep 18. Work to start on prototype Pizarro AFV engineering variant. Work on a prototype engineering version of the Pizarro armoured fighting vehicle (AFV) for the Spanish Army is set to begin, with the aim of having it ready for testing during 2019. According to industry sources, approval for work to begin was given after a crtitical design review was signed off by the vehicle’s manufacturer, General Dynamics European Land Systems (GDELS), and the Spanish Ministry of Defence (MoD). The Vehículo de Combate de Zapadores (VCZAP), as it is designated by Spain, is part of the second phase of the country’s Pizarro programme. The army will receive 36 VCZAPs in addition to the 81 vehicles of the infantry version it ordered. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
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.