Iveco Defence Vehicles is building on the remarkable commercial and operational success of its Light Multirole Vehicle (LMV) to develop a version dedicated to Special Forces operations. Currently deployed in Afghanistan by seven different nations, the LMV is well regarded by its users, and its high levels of protection and mobility have already saved numerous lives.

The decision to develop a Special Forces variant was supported by a number of
SF units, enabling their specific operational requirements to be taken into consideration form the design phase. The result is a robust, mobile adaptable platform which is well placed to meet the demands of SF missions.

After presenting a first prototype at IDET 2009 and DVD 2009, Iveco will now display the latest version of its SF LMV at IDET 2011.

The new model features the same well-proven drivetrain and running gear of the standard version, although its armoured cab has been stripped down to a minimum, providing optimum situational awareness and enabling rapid dismount.

The vehicle benefits from the proven LMV chassis which ensures logistic commonality for those armies which already deploy the standard LMV. The 140kW engine provides a power-to-weight ratio of about 20kW/t and is coupled to a six speed automatic gearbox with hydro-dynamic coupling converter and transfer-box.

The low profile of the rear of the vehicle allows unrestricted visibility and allows the use of weapons over a 360 degree arc.

On and off road mobility: LMV was specifically designed to provide the user with outstanding mobility and terrain accessibility. To this end, the vehicle incorporates design features such as independent suspension, central tyre inflation and ABS. This meets the key requirement for special operations teams of maintaining mobility in the most demanding conditions. On road, the LMV can reach over 110km/h.

Payload: the kerb weight of the SF vehicle, in the proposed configuration with several optional included, is 5,100kg, providing an impressive mission payload of some 2,000kg. The vehicle features a low set, open rear cargo compartment which can be adapted to different layouts depending on the user’s specifications. Additional fuel or water tanks are present, as well as stowage solutions for individual equipment and weapon systems that can be adapted case by case.

Ballistic Protection: the doors and the armoured glass in the windscreen provide a tunable level of ballistic protection, readily upgradable with add-on armour packs. To maximise payload and mobility, the base SF vehicle is only fitted with a light anti-mine plate, while additional protection can be installed if required.

Crew safety and comfort: the crew is protected by a tubular frame roll-bar. Up to five crew can be carried, with the configuration of the seats being flexible. Typically a seat looking towards the rear is mounted, in order to provide observation and covering fire in the rear arc.

Transportability: currently the windscreen can be lowered, although the central roll-bar is fixed. A collapsible roll bar is under development, which will allow the vehicle’s height to be minimized for air transport. In the reduced width configuration, the SF version of the LMV fits inside the CH-47 Chinook helicopter, and will be transportable in all tactical transport aircraft.

Weapon system: Iveco has teamed up with a specialist weapon mount supplier to develop weapon supports and other mission specific features. The roll-bar is equipped with a weapon ring allowing the use of 7.62mm or 12.7mm machine gun and 40mm automatic grenade launcher. A larger ring mount, equipped with a suitable platform for the gunner, is under development.

The SF LMV, which is already under evaluation by Special Forces from different countries, demonstrates Iveco DV’s capacity to understand and meet the customers’ requirements through a continuous programme of development and innovation.

The new LMV Special Forces will be displayed at IDET 2011, to be held in Brno from 10th to 13th May 2011.