Home' Defence Technology Review : DTR APR 2015 Contents 39
DEFENCE TECHNOLOGY REVIEW | ISSUE 08 | APR 2015
French Leclerc MBT upgrade
Dutch opt for Bv206 MLU
THE FRENCH DEFENCE procurement
agency announced on 12 March that it has
awarded Nexter a €330 million (AUD$459
million) contract for the upgrade of 200
Leclerc main battle tanks (MBT) and 18
Leclerc chassis-based DCL (Dépanneur
de Char Leclerc) heav y recovery vehicles
as part of the French Army’s Scorpion
Work planned will see the Leclerc’s
firepower, protection and mobility en-
hanced and retained to ensure the ongoing
relevance of the capability within future
Scorpion joint tactical groups.
According to Nexter, this is to include
the development of specific interfaces for
the new CONTACT (COmmunications
Numériques TACtiques et de ThéâtrE)
THE NETHERLANDS MINISTRY of De-
fence has signed a contract with BAE Sys-
tems Hägglunds for the mid-life upgrade
(MLU) of the Dutch fleet of Bv206 tracked
articulated all-terrain vehicles (A-ATV).
Announced on 9 March, the MLU
includes replacement of the engine, trans-
mission, tracks, electrical systems and the
refurbishment of other sub-systems. Up to
95 vehicles will receive the upgrade.
support, forward repair team, flat bed load
carrier and mortar carrier.
The company expects the Dutch MLU to
be of interest to other Bv206 users, to which
more than 11,000 Bv206 vehicles have been
supplied since production began.
BAE Systems also won a contract to
upgrade the larger BvS10 A-ATV for the
Swedish Army, with delivery of 48 vehicles
completed in late 2013. – Ian Bostock
The contract covers the delivery of one
prototype, as well as six pre-series vehicles,
with an option for a further 88 vehicles.
The first seven vehicles will be upgraded
at the BAE Systems Hägglunds facility in
Örnsköldsvik, Sweden. The follow-on 88
vehicles will be upgraded in the Nether-
lands in co-operation with the customer.
The Bv206 is in service with the Dutch
Marine Corps in four variants: general
tactical radio system and integration into
the SICS (Système d’Information et de
Commandement SCORPION) digitised
information and command system to pro-
vide a fully networked force.
Protection will be improved through the
installation of add-on armour kits; a move
believed to be aimed at enhanced proof
against improvised explosive devices.
The upgrade is intended to enable the
Leclerc MBT to play a central role in ‘first
entry’ operations and extend life-of-type
out to 2040.
The first upgraded Leclerc tanks, to be
designated Leclerc R (R for renovated), will
be delivered from 2020.
– Mario Attopardi
Some 200 Leclerc MBTs will be upgraded
to ensure the capability remains
operationally relevant and deployable to
2040. Image: French MoD
Logistic support upgrades
for Buffalo MPCV
THE US ARMY TACOM Lifecycle
Management Command has awarded
General Dynamics Land Systems (GDLS)
a US$22.7 million (AUD$29.6 million)
contract for updates and revisions to all
logistic requirements and data in support
of the Buffalo A2 M1272 mine protected
clearance vehicle (MPCV).
The 34 tonne Buffalo A2 MPCV is a
heavily armoured truck with a V-shaped
hull specifically designed to protect its
occupants from mines and improvised
explosive devices (IED). A 9m robotic arm
and claw equipped with a high resolution
camera enables the crew to locate, manip-
ulate and disable mines and IEDs at a safe
stand-off distance from the vehicle.
The upgrade work by GDLS will be per-
formed at the Sterling Heights, Michigan
facility, with an estimated completion date
of March 2018.
– Matthew Mendenhall
Some 238 Buffalo MPCV have
been delivered to US units operating
throughout the world, where they have
played a vital role in route clearance
missions. Image: US Army
The mid-life upgrade will involve 95 Bv206 tracked articulated all-terrain vehicles. Image: Netherlands MoD
New mission computer
for USMC helos
NORTHROP GRUMMAN WILL supply
its FlightPro Gen III mission computer
for the US Marine Corps’ (USMC) H-1
helicopter upgrade program, with deliveries
scheduled for completion by October 2017.
Under the contract from Naval Air
Systems Command, the company will
supply the FlightPro Gen III units for AH-
1Z attack helicopters and UH-1Y combat
The FlightPro Gen III integrates
advanced mission, weapons and video
processing capabilities into a conduction-
cooled, high performance airborne
computer. The increased processing
power of the Gen III model
improves situational awareness and
reduces operator workload.
Northrop Grumman will now provide
the FlightPro Gen III across the AH-
1Z and UH-1Y aircraft that make up
the Marine Light Attack Helicopter
Squadrons, resulting in greater cost
efficiency and simplified logistics for
– Mario Attopardi
The FlightPro Gen III mission computers
bound for installation in USMC AH-1Z
and UH-1Y helicopters.
Image: Northrop Grumman
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