Algeria’s National Company of Industrial Vehicles (SNVI) has unveiled the first locally assembled Zetros 6×6 truck destined for the Algerian defence ministry.
The ceremony was attended by Army chief of staff Lieutenant General Ahmed Gaid Salah and German and Emirati partners who have invested in Algerian domestic vehicle production. The vehicle was built in Rouiba by a company created to run the project, the Société Algérienne de Production de Poids Lourds Mercedes-Benz (SAPPL-MB – Algerian Society for the Production of Trucks).
SAPPL-MB was founded in 2012 with a capital of €103 million. The majority of shares (51%) are held by Algeria through SNVI (34%) and the National Defence Ministry (17%), while 49% of shares are owned by the Emirates, reports the Algerian Press Service.
The first vehicle to be assembled by the plant was the Mercedes Benz Actros, which was rolled out in April last year. Five different types of vehicles are planned to be produced at the facility, including the Atego, Axor and Unimog. Around 2 000 trucks are planned to be produced this year.
The 6×6 all-wheel drive Mercedes-Benz Zetros is powered by a 326 horsepower engine and has a payload of between 7 000 and 10 000 kg. Mercedes-Benz has sold it to several militaries around the world.
Under the Algerian-German-Emirati project, two other factories have been set up, in the cities of Tiaret and Constantine, with engines being manufactured in Constantine. The Tiaret facility opened in October last year and recently delivered 200 Mercedes Benz BA6 G Class four wheel-drive vehicles to the National People’s Army (ANP) of Algeria.
“The manufacture of these vehicles will continue from March 2015, with the launch on the same site, of the Sprinter Vans Mercedes-Benz brand manufacturing in its various versions including transport, personnel carrier, ambulance and goods transporter,” the Algerian company announced in January. The plant is expected to produce 2 000 4×4 vehicles and 6 000 Sprinter passenger vehicles annually when it enters full production.
In addition to the Mercedes production facility, Algeria will receive an armoured vehicle assembly plant from Rheinmetall and this will produce Fuchs 6×6 vehicles and other parts. Algeria will build 980 Fuchs 2 vehicles as part of a 2.7 billion euro deal.
In 2011 Germany authorised the export of 54 Fuchs vehicles worth 195 million euros to Algeria, as well as other military vehicles worth 286 million euros, according to Der Spiegel. Around 1 200 Fuchs vehicles will be delivered between 2015 and 2025.