Germany has commissioned Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW) to produce 405 Puma infantry fighting vehicles (IFV), under what is now the largest European armaments project for land forces.
The Federal German Defence Technology and Procurement Agency has awarded a €3.1bn contract for the delivery of the newly developed combat vehicles to Project System and Management, a joint venture company of KMW and Rheinmetall of Düsseldorf.
The air-portable, all terrain Puma offers war fighters protection against mines, anti-tank weapons and improvised explosive devices.
The Puma also incorporates an unmanned turret design as well as decoupled running gear isolated from the vehicle body pan, which reduces noise and vibrations inside the vehicle.
KMW CEO Frank Haun said that the Puma contract is of key significance both for the Bundeswehr and the industry.
“It sets unique technical standards and will ensure that decisive system skills are retained in Germany, which are vital for maintaining our international competitiveness” Haun said.
The delivery of the IFVs to the German Bundeswehr will start in 2010.