Florence Parly Travels to Roanne: Signature of Contract for VBMR Light
(Source: Ministry of the Armed Forces; issued Feb 12, 2018)
(Issued on French; unofficial translation by Defense-Aerospace.com)
An artist’s impression of the Véhicule Blindé Multi-Rôles Léger (VBMR Light), the next-generation multirole armored vehicle that will equip the French army’s combat units. Over 2,000 are planned to enter service by 2030. (Nexter image)
PARIS --- During her visit to Nexter's industrial facility in Roanne (Loire) on Monday, February 12, 2018, Minister of the Armed Forces Florence Parly announced the award of the contract for the multi-role light armored vehicle (VBMR Light) to Nexter in co-cooperation with Texelis.
This contract, awarded by the Directorate General of Armament (DGA) includes the development, production and support of this new vehicle for the Army. The Military Programming Bill 2019-2025 provides for a fleet of more than 2,000 VBMR Light by 2030, the first 689 of which will be delivered by 2025.
This contract is part of the Ministry's effort to modernize and renew the equipment and operational capabilities of the Armed Forces, one of the four major axes of the military programming bill. VBMR Lights will replace part of the VAB fleet, including those used in Operation Barkhane in the Sahel. Ambulance variants of the VBRM Light for the Army Medical Service are also included in this contract.
The VBMR Light is being developed as part of the Scorpion program, which aims to renew ground combat capabilities by enhancing their tactical interoperability and operational capability. It will equip the national emergency echelon, and provide armored mobility for all army combat units. The VBMR Light will be the necessary complement to the Griffon heavy armored multi-role vehicles and the Jaguar armored reconnaissance and combat vehicles that will equip the army’s medium armored segment. The military program law that has just been tabled in Parliament provides for the delivery of 50% of the Scorpion program by 2025.
Le VBMR Light is a 4x4 armored vehicle weighing about 15 tonnes designed to embark up to 10 soldiers equipped with the FELIN soldier equipment system. It will integrate various equipment common to all Scorpion vehicles, in particular the electronic core, a machine gun remotely operated from the cockpit, threat detectors as well as the Scorpion Combat Information System (SICS). They will allow it to integrate the network of Scorpion vehicles. The VBMR Light will be delivered in 4 main versions: Patrol, Intelligence and Reconnaissance, Communications Relay, and Electronic Warfare. The first deliveries of the basic version (Patrol) are planned within 4 years.
The award of this contract marks a major turning point in the modernization of France’s land forces, and will directly contribute to the preservation of their operational superiority in all places and circumstances.
Nexter and Texelis Win the Lightweight VBMR Contract
(Source: Nexter; issued Feb 12, 2018)
ROANNE, France --- Nexter and Texelis are delighted at today's 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 and 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.
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.”
Nexter, the leading French land defense company and third European player in the ammunition sector is part of the KNDS Group. In France, Nexter is fully committed to meeting the objectives of the SCORPION program, through the renovation of the Leclerc tank and the development of the future VBMR and EBRC vehicles within the GME (temporary business venture between Nexter, Thales and Renault Trucks Defense). Nexter's 2016 turnover amounted to €866 million, of which 19% is allocated to Research and Development activities.
Texelis designs and manufactures axles and transmissions for large heavy-duty vehicles, particularly in the public transport (metros, trams and buses) and defence fields (trucks and wheeled armoured vehicles). Texelis supports both manufacturers/integrators and operators throughout the product life-cycle, from their initial design up to their renewal. Texelis has experienced sustained growth since 2015, with a turnover in 2017 of 70 M€, with further progress expected in 2018, thanks to its export and defence activities. The company has 310 employees, based mainly in Limoges.