Paramount to grow armoured vehicle production in India; reveals Mbombe 6 exports


Paramount is forging ahead with armoured vehicle production for customers around the world, revealing multiple customers for its Mbombe 6, and plans to produce a wider range of armoured vehicles in India for Paramount’s global customers.

The company made these announcements at the London-based Defence and Security Equipment International (DSEI 2023) exhibition this week.

Paramount has a partnership with Indian company Bharat Forge Limited and its subsidiary Kalyani Strategic Systems, which has resulted in locally made Kalyani M4 vehicles being manufactured in India. The first Kalyani M4s were inducted into Indian Army service in April 2022. Now, this development and manufacturing partnership is being expanded to include the production of a wider range of armoured vehicles in India for Paramount’s global customers.

Paramount Global CEO Steve Griessel stated, “The global armoured vehicle market is undergoing a monumental shift and within such a dynamic environment, our partnership with Kalyani Strategic Systems has become ever more strategic. We are excited to broaden our partnership to include the development and production of 4×4 and 6×6 Infantry Combat Vehicles for customers around the world. We are very proud that our partnership is growing from strength to strength.”

Neelesh Tungar, President – Defence, at Bharat Forge Ltd, said, “We at Kalyani Strategic Systems have come a long way in developing and scaling-up our manufacturing of world class defence platforms and reliable specialist vehicle platforms with our deep technical and industrialization expertise. This continuing and growing partnership with Paramount substantiates the fact that the world considers India being ready to be ‘the manufacturing capital’ for the global defence industry. We are committed to take this successful partnership to further greater heights, supporting the ability of Paramount to serve its global customers.”

Multiple customers for Mbombe 6

Paramount also revealed at DSEI that its 6×6 Mbombe 6 infantry combat vehicle has been ordered by national defence forces in Latin America and in the Southern African Development Community (SADEC). More than 20 of its next-generation ICVs are presently in production, with deliveries underway, the company said.

Earlier, Paramount released new market research undertaken by Defence Insight on the armoured vehicle market, forecasting a ‘global renaissance’ in armoured vehicle spending. The heightened demand will see global expenditures of $25.6 billion on certain armoured vehicle programmes between 2022 and 2035.

Paramount said its Mbombe armoured vehicle family is optimally positioned to cater to these requirements, with portable production allowing for locating manufacturing activities within the customer country.

The Mbombe family (4×4 Mbombe 4, 6×6 Mbombe 6, and 8×8 Mbombe 8) features a flat mine-protected floor, giving a lower and better stability than V-shaped armoured hulls. All three models share 80% common components to reduce through life costs and make training and logistics easier. A six-cylinder diesel gives a top speed of more than 110km/h – the Mbombe 4 has a top speed of some 150km/h, making it one of the fastest armoured vehicles in the world.

Since its launch in 2019, the Mbombe 4 has been ordered by six nations, including the Democratic Republic of Congo, United Arab Emirates, Togo, and India. In August 2022 Paramount revealed that the Mbombe 4 would be built in Thailand as the D-Lion. The company also hopes to produce the Mbombe 4 in Saudi Arabia.

The Mbombe 8, meanwhile, has been further developed by Kazakhstan Paramount Engineering (KPE) as the Barys 8 and last year concluded a four-year series of trials conducted by the Ministry of Defence of Kazakhstan.