Home' Defence Technology Review : DTR SEP 2014 Contents 27
DEFENCE TECHNOLOGY REVIEW | ISSUE 02 | SEP 2014
Land 400 CRV requirements
WITH THE AIM OF shedding light on
the broad capabilities that the Land 400
CRV might possess, DTR fired off a num-
ber of specific but not especially sensitive
questions to the Australian Department of
Defence in mid-August.
Whilst the response received from the
Land 400 IPT via Defence Media Opera-
tions was certainly not as detailed nor as
extensive as was hoped, the restrictions on
disclosure of such information is acknowl-
edged (although not fully comprehend-
ed). Nonetheless, the response provided to
DTR is provided here.
We will attempt to fill in some of the
blanks based on logic, reading between
the lines and market knowledge.
DTR: How strong is the likelihood that
the CRV will be wheeled?
Land 400 IPT: The Army User Require-
ment for Land 400 details the relevant
functional requirements of Land Combat
Vehicle System (LCVS), including battle-
field mobility. Additional information will
be provided in solicitation documentation
when released after Government First Pass
DTR Input: The wide expectation is that
the CRV will be wheeled. Issues of opera-
tional mobility, acquisition and through-
life costs and end user operational expe-
rience with the legacy fleet all point to
nothing but wheels. It is also very difficult
to see any other option given the plethora
of wheeled (8x8) candidate CRV solutions
on the market.
DTR: Is the CRV requirement able to
be met by existing MOTS/in-service ar-
moured fighting vehicles?
Land 400 IPT: Defence has been actively
engaged with Australian and internation-
al industry representatives on a regular
basis and believes there are existing mil-
itar y-off-the-shelf (MOTS) solutions that
could meet the requirements.
DTR: Please define MOTS as it applies to
the CRV requirement?
Land 400 IPT: Defence has used the Mor-
timer definition, which is:
MOTS equipment is equipment that:
- is already established in-service with
the armed forces of another country
- is sourced from an established
production facility (not just a MOTS
- has at most minor modifications to
deliver interoperability with existing
ADF and/or allied assets.
In the CRV context, the Common-
wealth would accept the transfer
of a proven production process to an
in-country facility as being compliant for
the purposes of point two above.
DTR: The current expectation among
industry is for a CRV requirement of
around 150 vehicles – is this accurate?
Land 400 IPT: The number of CRVs to
be acquired will be considered by Gov-
ernment at First Pass and then informed
by industry’s responses to any subsequent
DTR Input: Uniformed (not unin-
formed!) sources within the ADF have
confirmed with DTR that 150 CRVs is
about where the expectation presently sits.
Whilst the CRV is being talked about as
a replacement for the extant fleet of 257
ASLAVs, a one-for-one replacement is
The combat vehicle composition of the
Armoured Cavalry Regiment (ACR) un-
der Plan Beersheba seems to be at the core
of considerations about vehicle numbers
under Land 400. It’s difficult, given this
importance, to understand the lack of
transparency surrounding ACR vehicle
DTR: In addition to the principle turret-
ed gun version of CRV, what other CRV
variants are envisioned under Land 400?
Land 400 IPT: Government is yet to con-
sider Land 400 and as such the scope has
not changed from that outlined in the 2012
Defence Capability Plan. At First Pass ap-
proval, the Government will confirm the
scope and variants of the program.
DTR Input: The most numerous variant in
the ASLAV fleet is the ASLAV-25, followed
by the ASLAV-PC (personnel carrier), with
other variants including command, sur-
veillance, ambulance, fitter and recovery.
Whereas the ASLAV-25’s limited troop
carrying ability required fielding of the
ASLAV-PC variant in significant num-
bers, all the available candidate CRV
solutions have sufficient space in the rear
compartment to accommodate 8 troops
as standard in addition to a 3-man crew –
and this equipped with a two-man turret
intruding into internal volume (the Artec
Boxer is the exception to this, but can seat
8 troops when fitted with a remotely-op-
This additional troop carrying capacity
enables the same vehicle type to act as the
principle fire support platform and troop
carrier in one. This may well obviate the
need for a separate personnel carrier ver-
sion of the CRV, resulting in a higher ratio
of cannon-equipped combat reconnais-
As to numbers, without further guid-
ance from the Defence Materiel Organi-
sation (DMO) we’re really guessing here,
but out of a possible 150 CRVs to be pro-
cured it would not be unreasonable to as-
sume that 100-110 of these would be the
turreted combat reconnaissance version.
The additional hull volume in CRV
candidates may also enable turreted
combat reconnaissance variants to house
a telescoping mast and console operators
to undertake the surveillance role.
Bearing in mind the three distinct hull
types across the ASLAV fleet, the CRV’s
greater hull volume could potentially
permit the use of a single hull type for
each variant, with the only difference
between the combat reconnaissance and
other variants being the specialised mis-
sion role equipment kits installed in place
of a turreted weapon system.
The larger hull may also permit the
fitter and recovery variants to be rolled
So all up, the number of CRV variants
could be as few as five, or at most six.
DTR: Does the Program Office see an
advantage to remotely-operated turrets
(equipped with medium-calibre can-
non) over manned turrets for the CRV?
Land 400 IPT: This information has not
been released yet but guidance will be pro-
vided in solicitation documentation when
released after Government first pass con-
sideration. The discriminator will be the
ability to meet the requirement.
DTR Input: Most of the CRV candidate
solutions available have been demonstrat-
ed with both manned and remotely-oper-
ated turrets as their main armament. If a
clear preference cannot be interpreted in
the request for tender (RFT) functional
performance specification then respond-
ents may feel obliged to hedge their bets
both ways and offer one solution with
a manned turret and another with a
For some in the end user community
(cavalry units), the notion of not being
able to get ‘eyes on’ to gain the kind of situ-
ational awareness that only sticking heads
out of hatches can bring may be hard to
accept should a remotely-operated turret
There are, of course, pros and cons to
either turret type and advances in sight-
ing systems and sensors can do much to
effectively allow crew to stay ensconced
under armour, but if the ‘reconnaissance’
in Combat Reconnaissance Vehicle is to
mean anything then a manned turret
might prove the most balanced option.
DTR: Will currently developmental
but maturing weapons systems such as
the 40mm Case Telescoped Armament
System (40 CTAS) be considered for the
CRV main armament, or will only prov-
en/in-service weapons systems be con-
Land 400 IPT: As outlined above the
Land 400 program will be a MOTS
acquisition with minimal design
to allow the integration of Govern-
ment Furnished Equipment only.
All responses received through
CRV - THE STORY SO FAR
• Wheeled configuration (8x8) highly likely
• At least five variants
• Must be MOTS as per the Mor timer definition
• Manned or remotely-operated turret still unclear
• 3 0 -40mm cannon main armament
• Ability to carry 8 dismount s preferred
• No requirement to be amphibious, but will it swim?
• Coalition interoperability is good, but no
requirement for US commonality
• 150 vehicles is still a guesstimate
An interview with the Land 400 Integrated
Program Team (IPT) yielded few answers about
what Army wants from the forthcoming Combat
Reconnaissance Vehicle (CRV).
The likelihood that the CRV will be
wheeled is strong.
WILL BE A MOTS
OF GFE ONLY
Links Archive DTR OCT 2014 DTR AUG 2014 Navigation Previous Page Next Page