The production of 2044 VBTP-MR Guarani armored personnel carriers for the Brazilian Army is one of the major military procurement programs currently underway in Brazil. An 18 ton 6×6 armored personnel carriers, developed by the Italian company Iveco Defense Vehicles (CNH) in partnership with the Brazilian Army and produced in Brazil at Sete Lagoas. Since the beginning of full rate production in 2013 Iveco has delivered 190 vehicles. These vehicles are gradually replacing the Urutu and Cascavel vehicles, produced by the Brazilian company Engesa in the 1970s.
In parallel to the ongoing production of the VBTP variant, the Brazilian Army plans to induct the VBR-MR – a ‘wheeled tank’, based on a heavier 8×8 platform to be armed with turreted 105mm cannon. LAAD provides an important opportunity for manufacturers of such turrets. One such company is the South African Denel, Land Systems showcasing the MT-105 turret weapon system, currently evaluated by the Brazilian army for its new VBR-MR. Other candidate turrets include the Oto-Melara and the from CMI.
The Brazilian subsidiary of OTO Melara and local defense company ARES are also moving toward a partnership, to offer Oto Melara’s 105/120 mm modular HITFACT turrets for the VBR-MR program.
Another type of RPG and missile protection is provided by IMI’s Bright Arrow – an innovative remotely operated weapon station, integrated with situational awareness and passive and active protection systems, enabling light vehicles to be highly protected against RPGs and missiles. Bright Arrow is displayed on the company’s new ‘CombatGuard’, developed by IMI to support military operations in rough or urban terrain. CombatGuard has been configured to support military, counter terror and special security operations in complex terrain. A highly protected vehicle, the 4×4 CombatGuard carries six fully equipped combatants over extremely rugged terrain, crossing mud, sand dunes or dense urban areas.
Technicae, a Brazilian subsidiary of the Singapore technologies (ST Kinetics) is showcased a number of upgrade and reset programs for Brazil’s older combat vehicles, such as the Urutu and Cascavel. For the 6×6 Urutu platform, Technicae offers a turnkey modernisation solution replacing the electrical systems, transmission and drivetrain, navigation systems and firepower. The company also provides reset for M113 armored personnel carriers, upgrading the platform’s suspension, driver control station, introducing firing ports and bench seats. The conversion can also include ST Kinetics’ InfiniDrive HMX transmission powerpack, available with a choice of heavy duty engine types. Technicae also offers ST Kinetics’ ADDER family of Remote Weapon Stations (RWS), available in single and dual-weapon configurations.