By Ian Kemp
General Dynamics Land Systems–UK is promoting the Eagle 4×4/6×6 armoured vehicle family at DSEI 2019 to meet the British Army’s Multi Role Vehicle–Protected (MRV-P) Group 2 requirement.
The MRV-P Group 2 project is for about 250 4×4 or 6×6 vehicles in two variants – around 180 Troop Carrying Vehicles (TCV) and about 70 Future Protected Battlefield Ambulances (FPBFA). The TCV will be operated by a crew of two and carry six dismounts. The FPBFA will carry a four-strong crew, consisting of driver, co-driver, doctor, and medical assistant and have room for two casualties on stretchers or one stretcher casualty and two walking wounded. GDLS–UK displayed an Eagle 4×4 ambulance at DSEI 2017 and this year is displaying an Eagle 6×6 configured as a TCV.
The UK Ministry of Defence is expected to make a decision about the MRV-P Group 2 project in the first quarter of 2020.
The Eagle 5, available in 4×4 and 6×6 configurations, is the current production standard in the successful General Dynamics European Land Systems-Mowag Eagle family of which more than 1,200 are in service with the Danish, German and Swiss armies. The Eagle 5 features a double-V shaped hull mounted on a DURO chassis and can be configured for multiple roles including armoured personnel carrier, reconnaissance, ambulance, recovery, and command. According to GDELS-Mowag, the Eagle 5 provides “mine, improvised explosive device and ballistic protection that was previously achieved only in vehicles twice its weight”.
The German Army was the launch customer for the Eagle 5 with an order for 180 vehicles which has now been completed. In June 2017, Denmark’s Defence Acquisition and Logistics Organisation (DALO) signed a framework agreement with GDELS-Mowag for up to 130 Eagle Vs in four different configurations – patrol, reconnaissance, electronic warfare and support – and placed an initial order for 36 4×4 Armoured Patrol Vehicles and a separate contract to provide through-life support for 15 years. Following acceptance trials, the DALO formally delivered the first 22 Eagle 5s to the Royal Danish Army on 27 March 2019 and GDELS-Mowag is now completing integration of the final vehicles.
Danish officials have stated that the army would like to replace its fleet of 84 Eagle IVs with the Eagle 5. Thomas Lattman, Director for International Business & Services, Europe North, at GD-ELS, told EDR On-Line, that “within the next couple of weeks” the company expects guidance from DALO about which variants and how many will be included in the follow on order.
Lattman said the company expects to receive an order from the Swiss Army in 2020 to produce 100 Eagle 6×6 reconnaissance vehicles, equipped with a mast-mounted surveillance suite, for delivery from 2023
He noted that the Eagle could be suitable for requirements that are being developed by two or three unspecified East European NATO members.
Photos courtesy GDELS