Minister for Defence Industry Christopher Pyne welcomed the first delivery of a new generation of trucks and trailers to the Australian Army’s 7th Brigade at Gallipoli Barracks in Brisbane.
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The new vehicles, developed as part of a multibillion-dollar contract, have been touted to transform the logistics capability of the Army.
"These trucks, trailers and modules will revolutionise Defence’s logistics capability for decades to come and hundreds of jobs have been created as part of the $3.5 billion LAND 121 Phase 3B project," said Minister Pyne.
"They provide a generational leap forward from the current fleet of Unimog, Mack and S-Liner trucks, offering significantly increased protection for our soldiers and an improved combination of payload and off-road mobility."
Minister Pyne said he was delighted a number of Australian companies are making a significant contribution to the development, delivery and support of this capability.
"The new trucks and interchangeable modules, used on the vehicles for a range of tasks including fuel and water transportation, are being supplied by Rheinmetall together with a range of local suppliers," Minister Pyne said.
"These suppliers come from around Australia and include GH Varley (Newcastle, NSW), Sea Box International (Canberra, ACT), Holmwood Highgate (Brisbane, Queensland) and RPC Technologies (Sydney, NSW).
"The majority of the trailers are being built in Brisbane by local company Haulmark Trailers Australia, with approximately 110 jobs created across Haulmark, its subcontractors and supply chain."
In addition to the new trucks and trailers, a general maintenance capability will be delivered, expected to comprise 122 Mercedes G-Wagons and 49 converted Bushmasters and trailers.
Once deliveries to the 7th Brigade and South-East Queensland units have been completed, the focus will turn to the 1st Brigade in Darwin and Adelaide in late 2017, and then to the 3rd Brigade in Townsville in 2018.
Between now and 2022, a total of 2,707 vehicles, 3,858 modules and 1,753 trailers will be rolled out to units across Australia.
LAND 121 is a multi-phased program providing the Australian Defence Force with current-generation, high-capability field vehicles, modules and trailers. It will acquire around 7,500 protected and unprotected vehicles providing battlefield mobility and logistics support.
LAND 121 Phase 3A has acquired 2,146 Mercedes-Benz G-Wagons, along with 1,799 matching Haulmark trailers.
LAND 121 Phase 3B is acquiring 2,707 medium and heavy vehicles, along with 3,858 modules and 1,753 trailers.
LAND 121 Phase 4 is acquiring 1,100 Thales Hawkei light protected mobility vehicles, plus 1,058 companion trailers, for command, liaison, utilty and reconnaissance roles.