LAND 400 project begins air transportability trials

LAND 400 project begins air transportability trials
BAE Systems Australia - Patria AMV-35 negotiating obstacles on the Driver Training Circuit at Puckapunyal

Phase 2 of the Australian Army's largest-ever defence procurement project, LAND 400, has gone to Canberra for air transportability trials.

The contenders, BAE Systems Australia and Rheinmetall, will be tested using the C-17 aircraft at RAAF Base Fairbairn.

Minister for Defence Industry Christopher Pyne said the trials will help lower risks of acquisition to the Commonwealth and the industry.

"The C-17 air transportability trials are part of the risk mitigation activity (RMA), which is a 12-month test and evaluation program to significantly lower risk to both the Commonwealth and industry in the acquisition and sustainment of these vehicles," said Minister Pyne.

The Rheinmetall and BAE Systems Australia vehicles will also be on display to officials and the public at Defence headquarters in Russell on 20 June.

Minister Pyne said the rivals are world-class examples of combat reconnaissance vehicles and represent a significant advancement in the protection and capability levels provided to our soldiers.

"The BAE Systems Australia Patria AMV35 and the Rheinmetall Boxer CRV embody the next generation of armoured fighting vehicles with vastly improved firepower, protection and mobility," Minister Pyne said.

The minister said the RMA is also looking at ways to maximise Australian industry involvement in LAND 400 Phase 2.

"Significant effort has gone into increasing opportunities for Australian companies to be a part of LAND 400 Phase 2," said Minister Pyne.

"Defence completed a nationwide series of workshops late last year to provide Australian companies with an opportunity to showcase their capabilities to the shortlisted LAND 400 Phase 2 tenderers.

"Projects like LAND 400 Phase 2 give us the opportunity to modernise our defence capability while we keep jobs in Australia and boost domestic manufacturing."

LAND 400 Phase 2 is a $4-5 billion project to purchase 225 CRVs to replace the Australian light armoured vehicles currently in service with the Australian Army.

Vehicles from both tenderers recently had their weapons tested at Puckapunyal Army Base in Victoria.

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