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NEXTER Wins French Light VBMR Contract

Artist's impression of Lightweight VBMR [© NEXTER]

The French NEXTER Group has announced that it has been chosen, along with power transmission specialists TEXELIS, to supply the VBMR replacement for the in-service VAB 4×4 armoured personnel carrier.

According to the official press release: Nexter and Texelis are delighted at today’s [12 Feb] confirmation by Florence Parly, Minister of Armies, for the attribution of the supply of Lightweight Multi-Role Armoured Vehicles (VBMR – Véhicules Blindés Multi-Rôles) for the French Army. The contract went through the Direction Générale de l’Armement (DGA) in the presence of Joël Barre, National Armament Director (NAD), and Bernard Barrera, Major General of the land forces.

These 4-wheel drive vehicles are designed for use by the Army’s intelligence and reconnaissance units as part of the SCORPION programme. With their multi-role capability, they are equipped with the SCORPION information and communication systems (SICS) and come in several variants: troop transport, command post, artillery fire control, engineering, ambulance, and ISTAR (Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition & Reconnaissance), tactical communication hub, etc.

The Nexter Group will be responsible for the design to cost and performance, integration, production and support of the lightweight VBMR. This fully French-made vehicle will be assembled in Roanne, alongside the VBMR-GRIFFON and EBRC-JAGUAR, thus reinforcing job creation in the Roanne basin and in the engineering offices.

TEXELIS, a French intermediate sized enterprise based in Limoges, will design and supply the mobility equipment. As the French specialist in heavy vehicle power trains, Texelis contributes to the Lightweight VBMR’s mobility performance.

Stéphane Mayer, Nexter’s CEO commented, “I am extremely proud and pleased of this recognition of the expertise of Nexter and its teams, who have come up with the perfect answer to this programme’s requirements. With this contract Nexter is reinforcing its presence within the SCORPION programme and strengthening its position as the reference player in the field of land armament”.

This contract follows on from the industrial architect contract awarded to tns-MARS (a JV including Nexter, Safran and Thales), the contract grouping together the design, production and support of the VBMR-GRIFFON and the EBRC-JAGUAR (within a temporary consortium consisting of Nexter, Thales and Renault Trucks Defense) and from the renewal of the Leclerc tank of which Nexter is prime contractor.

For his part, Charles-Antoine de Barbuat, Texelis CEO said, “I am very proud of the Texelis team for the part they have played in winning this highly significant contract for Lightweight VBMR. The decision of the DGA and the partnership with Nexter strengthens and confirms our strategy to be specialists in wheeled armoured vehicle and public transport mobility.”

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