Paramount expands APC offering


The Maverick internal security vehicle joins the Matador and Marauder.The Paramount Group has expanded its armoured personnel carrier range to three, with the introduction of the Maverick.

The Maverick internal security vehicle joins the Matador and Marauder mine resistant armour protected (MRAP) vehicles announced late last year and has about the same dimensions as the BAE Systems RG12.

Paramount Group executive chairman Ivor Ichikowitz says the Nemo Land Forces System, as the trio are known collectively, is the result of 14 years of experience upgrading existing equipment.

“We have supported more than 20 sovereign governments in upgrading their existing equipment, supplying new equipment, providing training, long-term technical support and supplying the finance required,” says Ichikowitz.

“Many of the systems that the Paramount Group has supplied over the years have been based on SA manufactured armoured vehicles and… we are… proud to have contributed to the saving of many hundreds of lives of troops in combat.

“It is through this practical, hands-on experience that we realised the time had come to develop our own range of product and invest in the next generation of technology.

“When the original offering of South African armoured vehicles was developed in the late 1980s, the threat profile was very different from what it is today, and the need to give end-users a product capable of meeting modern threats and operational challenges was critical.

“To achieve this, it was necessary to assemble the very best team of vehicle designers and engineers the world had to offer. We told them what the market wanted and placed very few technical or design constraints on them,” he continues.

Mine protected

“We told them to develop a family of armoured vehicles with the highest level of ballistic and mine protection as well as the best possible payload at an affordable price.”

The consequent design philosophy was based on a clean sheet approach addressing the needs of base line protection as a priority, and not using add-on options to existing vehicles, says Ichikowitz.

The mine-protected versions are based on the proven V-shaped hull, an acknowledged South African trademark that is now widely employed in mine resistant vehicle designs around the world, adds the Paramount chief. The designs have also been qualified and certified by the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research and Armscor.

Ichikowitz says simplicity, standardisation, protection and multi-role adaptability were the criteria set for a standardised family of specialised armoured vehicles. “The specific role in a military or public order application would dictate vehicle model, size, level of protection and fitment of on-board suites and equipment.”

This led the Paramount Group to standardise on vehicles in the 15-ton GVM class, with a payload of around 5 000kg and powered by a widely used and reliable aggregate set of MAN engine and driveline systems.

Taking centre stage

The Matador and Maverick mine-protected vehicles made their world debut at the IDEX expo in Abu Dhabi in February 2007, and were displayed on African soil for the first time at AAD 2008, which ended on Sunday. The Maverick internal security vehicle made its global debut at AAD.

“This vehicle is aimed at the policing, internal security, border patrol and urban peacekeeping market.”

Ichikowitz says the Nemo Land Forces System can be licensed for local manufacture anywhere in the world and will be “the basis on which many land forces industries will be built throughout the world”. This includes technology and skills transfer to “selected clients” to enable indigenous production, he adds.

The NEMO range includes:

* Matador: High resilience MRAP (crew of 2 + 12)
* Marauder: Medium resilience MRAP (2 + 8)
* Maverick: Internal Security Vehicle (2 + 10)

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