Copenhagen, Denmark: Denmark has placed an order for 309 Piranha 5 armored personnel carriers (APCs) from General Dynamics Land Systems Europe, in a deal worth $662 million (DKK4.5 billion). The first vehicles to be delivered in 2018 will be used for training; initial operational capability (IOC) is expected in 2019, with deliveries continued at least through 2023. The current order includes options to cover the additional 150 vehicles that could be acquired in a follow-on phase.
The new Piranhas will replace the 450 M-113s currently in service. The Danish military is expecting to upgrade some of its existing M-113G3 vehicles into a much heavier G4 variant. This upgrade began in 2009 but realized to be unsuitable for fielding. Additional modifications were required for the vehicle’s acceptance.
According to current plans, some of M113s will undergo modifications into the ‘improved G4’ configuration, to provide the Army to meet urgent requirements in the 2016-2020 interim phase, until the Piranhas become operational. These conversions will include hull extension (use of six road wheels) and improved suspension, improved blast protection with additional belly plate and suspended seats. The vehicle’s height was also increased to improve crew survivability after mine explosion. All those additions have increased the vehicle’s weight from nine to 20 tons.