Puma is the new armored infantry fighting vehicle developed for the German Army, which is expected to procure 405 vehicles with a total budget of 3 billion Euros.
Puma is based on a new design reflecting the armed forces new mission profiles, highlighting expeditionary warfare while maintaining high level of protection and good mobility. The Puma provides full protection against mines and anti-tank weapons, at a level previously unavailable to similar systems (such as the Marder it will replacing in service). To maintain high protection levels and air mobility with the future Airbus A-400M European transport, Puma will be produced in a basic “Level A” protection featuring a total gross weight of 31.45 tons. Additional armor protection called “Level C” could be applied after the vehicles are deployed at their destination area, providing increased protection against shaped charge threats, medium caliber guns and heavier mines. Further protection is applied to the vehicle’s roof, protecting from top attacks by AP bomblets.
Puma is equipped with a new MTU 10V 892 HPD 800 kW high power density turbo diesel engine, driving a Renk HSWL 256 hydrostatic/hydrodynamic shifting, reversing and steering transmission. The automotive system also includes a decoupled drive assembly comprising hydro-pneumatic suspension, improving the smooth cross country traveling. By eliminating the need for torsion bars, the space under the floor is cleared for better countermine protection. The use of lightweight tracks further reduces weight. The vehicle uses an unmanned fully stabilized turret, mounting an automatic 30mm Mk30-2 ABM Mauser gun firing standard AP or airburst munitions (ABM). A secondary armament mounting an MG4 5.56mm machine gun. The turret is also installed with a gunner’s thermal sight, a commander’s independent panoramic sight, 400 ready to fire rounds of ammunition and smoke dischargers.
Initial production orders are expected by mid 2007, following parliamentary approvals. PSM is currently working toward the delivery of five pre-production vehicles, under a previous order issued in 2004. The first five prototype Puma vehicles will also be equipped with the MUSS multifunctional self-protection system, to be supplied by EADS Defense Electronics.