To replace the United Defense full-tracked Lynx Command and Reconnaissance Vehicles in service with the Canadian Forces, in April 1992, a modified version of the LAV-25 (8 x 8) light armoured vehicle was selected and, in 1993, an order was placed with the Diesel Division. General Motors of Canada, for 203 vehicles.
The first four vehicles were completed in January 1996 and production has now been completed.
The LAV-25 (Reconnaissance) has been developed to carry out the following battlefield missions:
(1) Carry out reconnaissance and surveillance functions at battle group and brigade level
(2) Strategic mobility to reach theatre of operations
(3) Tactical mobility for effective use of firepower
(4) Firepower to defeat soft and light armoured targets
(5) Battlefield survivability to carry out combat missions
(6) Supportability and affordability.
Three versions have been purchased, one with a mast-mounted sensor suite, one with two tripod-mounted sensor suites and the third built to receive, but not fitted with, any surveillance suites. Details are given in the following description.
The vehicle is fully air-transportable in the following aircraft:
The hull of the LAV-25 (Reconnaissance) is very similar to the LAV-25 used by the US Marine Corps for some years but incorporates many detailed improvements.
The all-welded steel hull provides the crew with protection from small arms fire and shell splinters, with the driver being seated at the front of the hull on the left with the engine compartment to his right.
Add-on armour, when fitted, will provide protection against projectiles up to 14.5 mm all round and against 30 mm over the frontal arc. Unlike earlier versions of the LAV-25, the LAV-25 (Reconnaissance) is not amphibious.
The driver has a single-piece hatch cover that opens to the left and three M17 day periscopes, the centre one of which can be replaced by a thermal vision device.
The driver's periscopes have two levels of laser protection and are upgradable to three levels of protection. There is a hull escape hatch in the left side of the vehicle.
The Delco Defense Systems Operations LAV-25 turret upgraded to full electric drive is in the centre of the hull, with the commander seated on the right and the gunner on the left, with both having a single-piece hatch cover that opens to the rear.
The commander has a total of seven day periscopes with two levels of laser protection which are upgradable to three layers of protection. He also has a DIM 36 target acquisition sight mounted in the forward part of the turret roof which incorporates a Generation III image intensification sight. The commander also has a HIRE thermal sight remote display from the gunner's sight.
The gunner has a sight observation periscope in the left side of the turret roof with two levels of laser protection which is upgradable to three levels of protection. In the forward part of the roof the gunner has a DIM 36 target acquisition sight, HIRE thermal sight with through the sight laser range-finder.
Main armament comprises a fully stabilised The Boeing Company 25 mm M242 Chain Gun with a 7.62 mm C6 machine gun being mounted coaxial to the right and provision for a roof-mounted 7.62 mm C6 machine gun.
The surveillance equipment compartment is at the rear of the hull with two doors that open outwards to the left and right. Each of these has a vision block with laser protection.
Over the surveillance compartment are two roof hatches that open left and right with the sensor package being elevated when the left hatch is open. The surveillance operator is seated in the rear on the left side with the display to his right.
There are two versions of the LAV-25 (Reconnaissance), battle group kit and fixed brigade kit. Prime contractor for the Reconnaissance Vehicle Surveillance System (RVSS) is Computing Devices of Canada.
This consists of the sensor module, telescopic mast (if fitted) and the operator's console. The last gives the operator full control of all sensors with automatic target detection and tracking, full use of multisensor synergy and 2 hours of VCR recording of all electro-optical data.
The battle group kit consists of man-portable dismounted surveillance sensors mounted on tripods with a lightweight copper/fibre optic composite cable allowing for the sensor package to be positioned up to 200 m from the operator's station in the vehicle.
One tripod has the battlefield surveillance radar with 3,200 mil azimuth coverage while the second tripod has 6.400 mil azimuth coverage with the following sensors:
(1) long-range TV camera
(2) eye-safe laser range-finder
(3) thermal imager.
The fixed brigade kit has an electrically powered extendable mast which projects, the surveillance sensors 10 m above the ground. On this mast are mounted:
(1) battle surveillance radar with 3,200 mil azimith coverage which will detect moving targets out to 24 km
(2) electro-optical package with long-range TV camera giving day/night recognition/detection out to 18 km, eye-safe laser range-finder with a range of 10 km and accurate to ± 5 m, and highperformance FUR with all-weather recognition/ identification of targets out to 12 km. The battlefield surveillance radar used in the LAV-25 is the UK Racal Radar Systems MSTAR (Man-portable Surveillance and Target Acquisition Radar) manufactured under licence by Systems and Electronics Inc (SEI), a subsidiary of ESCO Electronic Corporation of the USA.
Navigation equipment fitted includes Digital Compass System (DCS) with driver's and commander's display, DCS interface with PLGR, dead reckoning back-up to PLGR and laser range-finder available on commander's display.
The vehicle has full-time four-wheel drive on the rear wheels with selectable full eight-wheel drive.
The 24 V electrical system is waterproof and radio suppressed; two 500 A slave receptacles are provided.
Threat detection equipment from DRS Technologies includes:
(1) Laser Warning Receiver (LWR)
(2) commander's LWR display that shows threat direction in relation to turret
(3) driver's LWR display that shows threat direction in relation to vehicle.
Standard equipment includes an automatic fire detection and suppression system in the engine and crew compartments; front-mounted hydraulic winch with a capacity of 6,804 kg; NBC system of the ventilated face mask type; GID-3 chemical detector; radiac set AN/VDR 2 radiation monitor; ATGM wire cutter for commander and driver; and a complete communications system.
Hot/cold weather equipment fitted includes dual hydraulically driven air conditioning system, fuel-fired high-capacity crew heater, engine coolant preheaterfor -40°C cold start and engine glow plugs for cold start.
Production complete. In service with Canadian Forces (203 vehicles).