OMC lands repeat Swedish order

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BAE Systems Land Systems South Africa has secured a follow-on €18 million order from Sweden for 60 RG32M vehicles. 
 
Sweden has previously purchased 200 of the mine hardened patrol vehicles, the last of these being delivered to Swedish defence procurement agency Försvarets Materielverk (FMV) earlier this year.
The FMV placed an initial order for 102 vehicles in 2005 and a follow-on contract for another 98 vehicles in 2007.  
Land Systems SA marketing communications manager Natasha Pheiffer says an “upgrade and test cycle will follow in the coming months for the latest order, and delivery will start in February 2010”.
The RG32M, which is not used by the SA military, is a 4×4 Light Armoured Vehicle with a crew of five to seven and a basic combat weight of about 7.3mt.
BAE Systems says the all-steel, welded armour, monocoque hull protects the crew against small arms fire, grenades, anti-personnel mines and land mine detonations under any wheel.  The engine and other key components are also protected against small arms fire and shrapnel.
The vehicle is constructed from automotive sub-assemblies that are commercial off-the-shelf items. “This provides significant benefits in cost-effectiveness, reliability and worldwide supportability,” the company says on its web site.
“The RG32M has various military and non-military applications to fulfill a wide spectrum of command, liaison, scouting, patrol and peacekeeping roles.”
In a comprehensive feature article about the pedigree of Southern African-designed armoured vehicle, Engineering News` Keith Campbell noted Land Systems SA predecessor Reumech OMC had developed what became the RG32 for the SA Police, who assigned the vehicle to their public order division (to use a current designation).
In its original incarnation the RG32 “Scout” was a 4×2, 3mt petrol-driven vehicle. Campbell says a United Nations requirement led to a 4×4 version. A diesel engine followed. “Then a military version was developed – the RG32M – which was ordered by Sweden” under the name “Galten”.
The latest version, currently being studied by Ireland, is the RG32M LTV (light tactical vehicle). The Irish have a stated requirement for 36 of the vehicles although press reports have speculated this could increase to 54.    
Engineering News in October reported that the 9mt RG32M LTV and two other two shortlisted vehicles are currently being subjected to extensive trials. A decision is expected early in the New Year. “At present, the Irish Army`s main peacekeeping deployments are in Kosovo and in Chad, and the Central African Republic. Thus, Irish forces have been, are, and could very well be, deployed in areas where landmines and improvised explosive devices pose significant threats.”
The latest Swedish order raises the number of RG32s sold to 480.
Other than Sweden and the UN users include Finland and reportedly also Egypt.