Canada’s Tactical Armored Patrol Vehicle Program


The Tactical Armored Patrol Vehicle (TAPV) is a component of the Canadian Department of National Defense (DND) Land Combat Vehicles and Systems (LCVS) program, addressing the renewal of Canada’s Land Forces’ core equipment platforms, as stated in the Canada First Defence Strategy.

According to the DND, the current Canadian fleet of soft-skinned and older light armored vehicles are no longer capable of meeting current and future requirements for mobility, ergonomics, information and intelligence sharing, and the ability to deliver integrated lethal and non-lethal effects. In addition, they fail to provide an adequate level of protection against current and emerging threats. While some success has been realized through extensive protection enhancements in mitigating the various threats, the vehicles have now reached their certified gross vehicle weight limits and therefore their potential for further upgrades. All these fleets are now either approaching or at their limits of viable economic and technical upgrade.

The project is aimed to deliver a wheeled combat vehicle that will fulfill a wide variety of roles domestically and on the battlefield, including but not limited to reconnaissance and surveillance, security, command and control, cargo, and armoured personnel carrier. It will have a high degree of tactical mobility and provide a very high degree of survivability to its crew.

According to Dave Pugliese, or the Otawa Citizen, six teams are planning to participate in the C$ 1 billion LAV replacement program, providing up to 600 combat vehicles to replacing the RG-31 Armored Patrol Vehicle (ASV) and Coyote Armored Reconnaissance Vehicles currently operated with the Canadian forces.

Among the six are three U.S. companies – Textron Marine and Land Systems, offering the Mobile Survivable Vehicle, an outgrowth of the M-1117 Armored Security Vehicle operating with the U.S. Army, Oshkosh Corporation, teamed with GDLS Canada are offering the M-ATV, and Force Protection Industries, teamed with the Canadian company, supporting the Cougar 4×4 and 6×6 and, with possible proposal of the Ocelot which recently won a British MOD order for a light patrol vehicle.

Two international subsidiaries of BAE Systems – Hägglunds of Sweden and OMC of South Africa are offering different vehicles for Canada’s TAPV program – the 6×6 Alligator (formerly SEP) is offered by Hägglunds while BAE Systems Land Systems OMC, is offering an upgraded RG-31 Mk5EM to replace the Canadian RG-31s.

The company also offers the much heavier RG-35 RPU. From France comes Nexter Systems of France is offering the Aravis. The Thales group has pulled out of the competition, after realizing the Canadians are aiming at smaller vehicle than their Bushmaster.