The Australian Army’s new Bushmaster vehicles have successfully passed the final stage of reliability tests, Defence Minister Robert Hill announced today.
Senator Hill said the achievement of this milestone meant there was only one step left before full rate production of the fleet could commence at ADI’s Bendigo facility. The final acceptance test is due to be completed late next month.
“I am very pleased with this result,” Senator Hill said.
“ADI and the Defence Materiel Organisation have worked hard and consistently over two and a half years to turn this project around and successfully address the reliability concerns we had with the vehicle.”
Senator Hill said the successful completion of reliability tests paved the way for ADI to promote Bushmaster on the international market.
“This latest result means ADI can now demonstrate an excellent capability with a high degree of export potential,” Senator Hill said.
The first of the 299 Bushmaster vehicles are due to be delivered to the Army’s 7th Brigade in Brisbane and the RAAF’s Airfield Defence Guards from May next year.
The vehicles are designed to transport troops to the battlefield, providing protection for troops against land mines, mortars and small arms ammunition.
Each vehicle will be fitted with a weapon station capable of mounting the Army’s family of light machine guns.
The Bushmaster can maintain speeds in excess of 90 km/h on Australian roads with a range of 600km carrying nine infantry soldiers with sufficient supplies of food, water and ammunition to last three days. (ends) Bushmaster Passes Final Reliability Test