15 May 2013
The new Medium Heavy Operational Vehicle.
A new fleet of state of the art trucks represents a capability leap forward for the New Zealand Defence Force, says the Vice Chief of Defence Force, Major General (MAJGEN) Tim Keating.
Today the Government announced a $135 million contract had been signed with the Rheinmetall MAN company for the purchase of up to 200 new trucks.
“These are modern trucks that will perform well on the modern battlefield,” says MAJGEN Keating.
“We operate in demanding environments, whether it is in support of humanitarian disasters or in armed combat, and we need reliable support vehicles.
“We are replacing our old Unimog and heavy truck fleets, which have been with us for nearly 30 years, with three sizes of the new trucks: 6 tonne, two-axle vehicles; 9 tonne, three-axle models; and a 15 tonne, four-axle variant. These new trucks are a significant step forward from the older fleet. They provide greater protection to our troops, they have greater carrying capacities and they are an operationally proven vehicle.”
As well as the normal troop and equipment carrying roles for the vehicles, some will also be fitted with winches and cranes to allow completely independent operations. Dump trucks; trucks fitted with specialised pallet and container handling equipment; and tractor/semi-trailer combinations to carry heavy vehicles and equipment will also help enhance the NZ Defence Force’s capabilities.
“In line with the greater capability these vehicles have is the level of technology they contain. All the engines are emissions compliant and allow for efficient operations even if the fuel is of lower quality, as might be found on foreign military operations,” MAJGEN Keating says.
“They also have modern computerised systems and are fitted with high capacity electrical systems to future proof them for future communications and other electronic systems.”
Although the trucks meet military requirements, MAJGEN Keating says over 80 percent of their components are in common use by civilian MAN vehicles. This commonality will allow for readily available maintenance support to the vehicles.
MAJGEN Keating says the first five training vehicles are arriving soon and will allow drivers and mechanics to train and qualify on the vehicles prior to the main fleet arriving. All trucks will have arrived by the end of 2014 and will be fully introduced into service with the NZ Defence Force by 2015.
For further information, contact Defence Communications Group on 021 487 980.
Video of the Medium Heavy Operational Vehicle - https://drive.google.com/folderview?id=0B7vQbrw5SJ02Y2VCU004dnEwSEE&usp=sharing