The German Bundeswehr has placed an order worth approximately $359m (€295m) with Rheinmetall for new Kodiak armoured engineer vehicles (AEV).
The order follows approval from the German Parliament’s budget committee in April to proceed with the procurement of the vehicles.
Following approval, the Federal Office for Bundeswehr Equipment, Information Technology and In-Service Support (BAAINBw) signed the contract with the company.
Rheinmetall will manufacture and deliver a total of 44 AEVs.
The first system is expected to enter the assembly line in 2023, with the delivery of all vehicles scheduled to be completed by 2029.
In addition, the latest order comprises several other products and services associated with the training and logistics necessary for commissioning and in-service support.
These include training courses and resources, as well as documentation, measuring and testing equipment.
Kodiak is an AEV and mine clearance tank that can meet the technical and tactical needs of modern combat engineers. It features a bulldozer blade with adjustable cutting and tilt angles.
The Kodiak vehicle is known as the ‘Pionierpanzer 3 Kodiak’ in German. It is based on the Leopard 2.
The Leopard 2 main battle tank was developed by Krauss-Maffei, now Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW), of Munchen, Germany.
Kodiak AEVs are currently in use by Switzerland, Sweden, the Netherlands and Singapore.
Powered by a 1,100kW engine, Kodiak features a three-part excavator arm and a front-mounted winch system equipped with two capstan winches.
It is also equipped with an advanced 76mm smoke/obscurant grenade launcher and the ‘Natter’ remote weapon station, which can be armed with either a 7.62mm or 12.7mm machine gun, or a 40mm automatic grenade launcher.