ARTEC to modernise Bundeswehr BOXER command vehicles
On 28 June 2017, OCCAR, the European procurement agency, awarded ARTEC, the BOXER consortium, i.e. a joint venture of Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW), Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles (RMMV) and Rheinmetall Military Vehicles Nederland, a contract to upgrade 38 BOXER multipurpose armoured transport vehicles to A2 status, a command role for the German Armed Forces (Bundeswehr).
ARTEC is expected to pass the order on to consortium partner RMMV during the next few weeks. For Rheinmetall the gross value of the contract comes to around €21 million and the order will be complete in mid 2020.
Modernising the BOXER command vehicles will involve a whole host of modifications affecting both the chassis and mission module. Among other things, the vehicles will be retrofitted with advanced driver visualisation technology, weapon systems, IT equipment modules and communication systems. This will lead to improvements with respect to handling, protection, combat effectiveness, networking and logistics, further enhancing this battle-proven, extremely well protected family of 8×8 wheeled vehicles. The scope of performance encompasses both one-time and serially produced products and services. In general, the one-time items relate to development activities such as system safety, environmental compatibility analysis, logistic support analysis and interactive electronic documentation.
Besides the 38 command vehicles, the Bundeswehr are upgrading 124 BOXER armoured personnel carriers (APC), 72 heavily protected field ambulances and 12 driver training vehicles to A2 status, as well as others (see below).
Modification of the command vehicle module to A2 encompasses installation of a fire suppression system; AIT labelling; a remotely controlled FLW200 weapon station that can be operated from multiple locations in the vehicle; common displays for the vehicle commander and section leader; transmission of the video signal from the driver visualisation system to the commander’s station; as well as alteration of the external storage capacity, antenna configuration and loading. Additional components will be integrated into the vehicle’s IT suite, including DVI, LAN, Y adapter cables and a DC/DC transformer. The upgraded vehicles will also be equipped with a voice over IP/ VoIP capability.
On behalf of the German Federal Office of Bundeswehr Equipment, Information Technology and In-Service Support (BAAINBw), OCCAR has furthermore concluded a contract with ARTEC for the modernisation of 246 Boxer vehicles of various types for the Bundeswehr. The total value of the contract is around € 94 million. The vehicles will be modernised between 2018 and 2023 by the parent companies of the ARTEC joint venture.
KMW will carry out the modernisation work on 208 of the total 246 BOXER vehicles. This will include a new satellite-based communication (SATCOM) system, improved command and control (C2) equipment, and an additional operator station for the RCVS (remote controlled weapon station) will be installed. In addition, the vehicles will receive a new stowage concept based on operational experience and will be prepared for the integration of a driver vision system.
The German Armed Forces already have more than 400 BOXER vehicles in different variants already in use or in the procurement process, and the Dutch Armed Forces have 200. Together with the Lithuanian vehicles, just short of 700 vehicles therefore have been contracted by three user nations.
Globally, the BOXER is competition, so watch this space for further updates.