Update Readies Combat Vehicle for Future Threats
(Source: Netherlands Ministry of Defence; issued Nov. 10, 2020)
(Unofficial translation by Defense-Aerospace.com)
A Dutch Army CV90 infantry combat vehicle during an exercise on the Leusderheide training range in September 2018. The Netherlands plan to sign an contract with BAE Hagglunds by the first quarter of 2021 to upgrade 128 of these vehicles. (NL MoD photo)
The modernization of 122 Dutch Army CV9035NL Infantry Fighting Vehicles has come a step closer. State Secretary Barbara Visser today informed the House about the progress. The aim of the so-called midlife update (MLU) is to ensure operationally relevant, maintainable and future-proof vehicles.

The security situation has changed in recent years and potential enemies have become considerably more capable. The importance of a necessary strengthening of an integrated "command & control network" has therefore only increased. The MLU ensures that the CV90 remains operationally relevant and technically usable until the end of its planned lifespan in 2039.

It includes improvements in firepower, protection, mobility, observation and command and control.

Active protection system

The update includes the integration of CV90 active protection systems, which detect and disrupt incoming projectiles. Firepower improves with the addition of the Spike anti-tank missile system. There are new observation sensors for the commander and gunner, while the driver is provided with a thermal imaging device.

In addition, the CV90s will receive a future-proof IT infrastructure and an integrated battlefield management system. Better detection and identification options make information-driven operations more possible.

The initial offer was higher than the available budget. That is why the assignment has been adjusted, both qualitatively and quantitatively.

The number of vehicles to be modified has been adjusted from 141 to 122, and the number of driver training vehicles from 8 to 6.

Qualitatively, an additional camouflage system is not included. Cyber security, on the other hand, was increased.

The budget has been increased by around € 24 million to more than € 660 million.

Looking forward

The State Secretary wants to sign the contract with supplier BAE Systems Hägglunds (BSH) as soon as possible, and no later than the 1st quarter of 2021.

After signing, the MLU of four prototype vehicles will start. It has been agreed with BSH that the company Van Halteren Metaal will carry out the series production of the MLU. The first series production vehicles will be delivered in 2024, the last in 2026.

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