The Australian Defence Force (ADF) is set to upgrade its land capabilities with the procurement of 1,044 additional new-generation medium and heavy trucks, 872 modules and 812 trailers worth $1.4bn.
The additional vehicles, and their associated modules and trailers would facilitate logistics support through the movement of assets and supplies in combat, humanitarian, natural disaster relief and training.
Australian Defence Industry Minister Christopher Pyne said: “These modern trucks will be used for a broad range of military contingencies, from resupplying combat operations to supporting the ADF’s assistance to Australian and regional communities after natural disasters such as floods, fires and cyclones.
“We’ve already got more than 1,000 of these trucks in service and they have proved their value, exceeding user expectations in disaster relief, training and on exercises.”
The procurement project marks the Australian Government’s approval for the LAND 121 programme, which has been designed to replace the ADF’s existing fleet of ageing vehicles and trailers.
The new medium and heavy trucks will be manufactured on an existing production line in Austria, while the modules and trailers will be delivered by the collaboration between Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles Australia and other indigenous firms such as Varley in Newcastle, Holmwood Highgate in Brisbane, and ECLIPS in the Australian Capital Territory.
Pyne added: “This project presents an exciting opportunity for Australian industry to continue delivery of new-generation capability in support of the ADF.
“Australian industry involvement is in the order of half a billion dollars for acquisition, with ongoing sustainment being carried out by Australian or Australia-based companies.”