Germany has deployed the first five new German-Dutch Boxer multirole armoured vehicles (MRAV) to its training and protection battalion operating in Afghanistan.

Upgrades to the new personnel carrier variants include additional mine protection, enhanced range of the remotely controlled light-weapon station and additional armament, such as 99mm machine gun or the 40mm grenade machine weapon.

The 33t, 8×8 wheeled Boxer, built by ARTEC, will be used by the German forces to transport and support an infantry group and its equipment.

The vehicle is being designed to fully or partially replace the existing German and Dutch vehicles, such as the M113 armoured personnel carriers and Fuchs.

During the first quarter of 2012, Germany is planning to deploy additional armoured personnel carriers and a command vehicle variant of the Boxer to Afghanistan.

ARTEC is a joint venture of Krauss-Maffei Wegmann and Rheinmetall Defence, according to Defence News.