The French Army‘s DCMAT logistics department and the French Defense Procurement Agency DGA have awarded a contract worth up to $1.35bn to Nexter to provide maintenance services for the army’s Leclerc battle tank.

Under the three year contract, the company will provide maintenance and support services for the battle tank, and replace obsolete components and systems.

The Nexter-built Leclerc battle tank is the main battle tank of the French Army. It has an operational range of 550km and a maximum road speed of 72km/h.

Armament of the tank include 120mm / 52-calibre smoothbore NATO standard gun, with 12.7mm coaxial machine gun, and 7.62mm machine guns operated by the commander and gunner.

The three-year contract has annual options for an extension to ten years. Work under the initial $135m contract for one year will begin on 1 January 2010.