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Spain to buy 300 new 8x8 armoured vehicles

Category: Defence Industry

Boyer vehicle, developed by German ARTEC-Consortium

The Spanish Ministry of Defense has recently released a Request for Information (RFI) addressing companies interested in producing the new 8x8 armoured vehicles for the Spanish Armed Forces. The RFIs deadline is scheduled for August 15, 2009.

MoD officials said that a contract for delivery of 300 vehicles by 2016 is to be signed in June 2010 following the evaluation of the submitted proposals.

The RFI has been issued by Spains procurement agency, General Directorate of Armament and Material (DGAM), and published on the agencys website. Yet, the document does not include any specifications on the financial provisions of the programme.

The decision of the DGAM to publish the RFI on its website without placing additional advertisements about the programme indicates that the government is open to all proposals. According to different sources, about half a dozen contractors may participate in this tender, which had been asked for by the MoD in a request for a proposal last week. The list of possible international competitors for this programme includes the Italian Iveco-Oto Melara consortium offering the Super AV or Freccia, the German ARTEC-Consortium with Krauss-Maffei Wegmann supplying the Boxer vehicle, French Nexter with its VBCI, Finnish Patria with the AMV, and British/Swedish Bae Systems-Hägglunds offering the SEP. Other possible participants in this tender include Thales Australia with their Bushmaster vehicle as well as the Spanish-Swiss Santa Bárbara Sistemas/ Mowag manufacturing the Piranha IV/V.

The DGAM states that the purpose of the RFI is to gather information on 8 x 8 armoured vehicles that are available on the market for reference in a future acquisition programme which Spain will hopefully launch. The DGAM explains that in a first phase, as many as 300 units of the new vehicles will have to be delivered between 2012 and 2016. Before the end of 2014, a minimum of 40 vehicles should be delivered in order to ensure the programs initial operating capability, including deployment to operations abroad in 2014.

Furthermore, the RFI specifies that the awarded company will have to establish a plan to develop industrial cooperation opportunities in Spain and collaboration with national companies in the defence sector with the bodies and units of Army logistics.

The Spanish department of Defence said in a statement that the Armed Forces need to have "a family of wheeled multipurpose medium weight armoured vehicles with a high levels of protection and mobility". These vehicles will take part in the "Vehículo blindado de Ruedas" (VBR) of the Spanish Army. The vehicles should have a high capacity for survival of the personnel and crew, while retaining sufficient internal volume and significant load capacity, according to the document. Beyond that, the MoD is looking for vehicles with a reduced need for logistic resources and low costs of service.

The vehicle will be acquired in three versions in the first phase of the programme, known as Personnel Carriers (Porta personal - VPP), Cavalry Exploration (Exploración de caballería -VEC), and Command Vehicles (Puesto de mando - VPC). However, the vehicle must also be modular, open to allow the incorporation of technological innovations that may be considered necessary.

According to the announced programme schedule, the MoD will await the Industrys answer for the RFI until August 2009. The evaluation of supplies and vehicles should be completed by December 2009 with a request for combining supply with price (RFQ) by January 2010, with a final contract signed by June 2010.

Spanish MoD
28.05.2009

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