German company Rheinmetall has won a €135m order from the Bundeswehr (German army) for modernisation and survivability upgrades to 90 long-serving Fuchs/Fox armoured transport vehicles notably to structurally alter the hull; put in new seats and suspended seating in the fighting compartment to keep soldiers’ feet safely off the floor of the hull; reinforce the wheel housings, doors and window mountings; place additional storage bins and reinforce the vehicle exterior. Delivery of the vehicles is slated to start in 2017 and end in 2020 and will take the number of 1A8s deployed by the Bundeswehr to 267.
The Düsseldorf-based company has already upgraded 177 Bundeswehr Fuchs/Fox vehicles to the latest 1A8 standard. Compared with previous versions, the 1A8 offers substantially greater resistance to landmines and improvised explosive devices, coupled with improved protection against ballistic threats.
The Fuchs/Fox armoured transport vehicle first entered service in the 1970s. With some 1,200 in service worldwide, it has won a well-earned reputation for dependability and off-road mobility, making it one of the most valued and versatile vehicles in the German inventory. It is currently being used in a number of international operations: MINUSMA (UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilisation Mission in Mali), and NATO’s Resolute Support in Afghanistan and KFOR in Kosovo.
The Bundeswehr has already fielded multiple variants of the 1A8, including mobile command post and armoured personnel carrier versions, a field ambulance, an EOD vehicle as well as an NBC detection variant and the Route Clearing Package (RCP) operator vehicle used for neutralizing mines and improvised explosive devices.
Additional Fuchs/Fox armoured transport vehicles will now be reconfigured for command, APC and EOD roles, with an option for Joint Fire Support Coordination Team vehicles.