BAE Systems (BAES) South Africa has developed a reconnaissance patrol and utility (RPU) version of the 4×4 variant of their RG35 mine resistant armour protected (MRAP) vehicle. The company says the RG35 RPU is an open architecture fit for many applications and is currently being adapted to suit the Canadian Tactical Armoured Patrol Vehicle (TAPV) programme.
BAES adds the vehicle delivers a “crucial balance between firepower, proven survivability and tactical mobility troops currently need and will require in the future.” The multinational defence company rolled out the baseline RG35 at the Defence Systems & Equipment International (DSEi) exhibition in London in September 2009. The RG35 combines the high levels of survivability of the RG31 MRAP with much of the tactical capability of a modern combat vehicle, the company said at the time.
BAE Systems Land Systems South Africa MD Johan Steyn noted the RG35 incorporated the best of 30 years experience in mobility, protection and sustainability, while meeting current challenges and threats. The vehicle was designed to carry light and medium turrets as well as direct and indirect-fire weapons. It can also be configured as an ambulance, weapon carrier, command post, cargo transport or be outfitted with cameras and other electronics for surveillance missions. Furthermore, the RG35 could be scaled as a 4×4 or 6×6 to meet customer needs.
“No matter the mission, ensuring that troops make it to and from their home base safely is paramount,” said Chris Chambers, Vice President and General Manager of BAE Systems’ Tactical Wheeled Vehicles business. “With the RG35 RPU, we’ve developed a unique armour protected capsule, integrating decades of expertise and experience that we call the ‘crew citadel.’ It is designed to shield troops inside the vehicle from mine blasts, road side bombs and gunfire while ensuring they can fulfill their missions effectively.”
The RG35 RPU is a 4X4 mine protected multi-mission tactical wheeled vehicle. It measures approximately 5.2 meters in length, 2.6 meters in width, and 2.5 meters in height, with a ground clearance of 414 millimetres. The RG35 RGU’s gross vehicle mass is 21 000kg with a payload of 8000kg and seats driver plus nine crew members. The 6×6 variant is 7.4m in length, 2.5m in width and 2.7m in height with a ground clearance of 0.458m. The gross vehicle mass is 33mt with a payload of 14.870mt and 15sqm volume under armour. The RG35 6×6 has a turning circle of 15m and seats driver plus 15 crew members.