Much Improved Local-Build Vehicles Feature Better Ballistic Protection
The Dirección General de Industria Militar (Directorate-General for Military Industries) of the Mexican Army has revealed examples of the KITAM II and CIMARRON II – much-improved versions of the original KITAM and CIMARRON light tactical vehicles, revealed for the first time in 2014. Enhancements to the vehicles centre on improved ballistic protection, with the armour now offering protection against .50-cal rounds.
The KITAM is based on a Dodge Ram 5500 chassis, with a 410hp V8 diesel engine of 410 and four-wheel drive. The rear superstructure can either be open, with a total capacity for eleven people, or enclosed for use as an ambulance or utility vehicle. The rear doors open outwards, thus offering protection to fire from the rear as passengers egress. The suspension systems has been modified for the KITAM II and the vehicle can be equipped with a 7.62mm machinegun on the cabin roof.
The CIMARRON II is based on the Mercedes Benz Unimog U500 and also features improved armour, with a double cabin in a similar configuration to the KITAM II, carrying up to a tota lof 13 troops. Vehicle weight is 9,500kg, coupled to a cargo capacity of 3,000. The CIMARRON II also features a turret-mounted machinegun, this time of .50-calibre.
Both vehicles were developed during 2017, with prototypes completed by the end of 2018 and testing conducted during the first half of 2019. They are built at the Military Assembly Factory, which is subordinate to the Secretaría de Defensa Nacional (SEDENA – National Defence Secretariat) at Campo Militar 1-F in Santa Fe.
Santiago Rivas and Florencia Lucero Heguy