The Czech Ministry of Defence (MoD) is seeking 700 new light armoured 4×4 vehicles to replace the Army of the Czech Republic’s (ACR) aging UAZ and Land Rover Defender vehicles.
As per the Czech MoD, the ACR will commence replacing its legacy vehicles from 2020. While many firms are expected to compete, this tender is the United Arab Emirates (UAE)-based NIMR Automotive’s best opportunity to secure a significant export order.
At the 2017 International Defence Exhibition and Conference (IDEX), which took place in Abu Dhabi in February, NIMR Automotive signed a formal agreement with VOP CZ, a Czech automaker, to collaborate on marketing and producing NIMR vehicles for the Visegrád Group.
The Visegrád Group is a consortium comprising of the Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary and Slovakia.
As per Defence Blog, a NIMR AJBAN 440A was demonstrated at ACR’s Vyskov range. The AJBAN a general utility platform designed to be adaptable for a wide range of roles including, among others, transporting infantry, logistics support and special operations.
Notes & Comments:
Prior to the agreement at IDEX 2017, VOP CZ was serving as one of NIMR’s suppliers. In fact, VOP CZ has been manufacturing armoured cabins for the AJBAN 440A, which is one of the apparent competitors of the ACR vehicle requirement. The NIMR-VOP CZ offering is already linked with the Czech Republic’s local industry, and with NIMR committing to localizing NIMR vehicle production in the Czech Republic (via VOP CZ), Prague has an incentive to favour the AJBAN. Granted, it will also depend on the AJBAN’s performance in Czech conditions, but the industry linkage and local workshare are key factors.
If they win then Czech Army will have first Middle East LMV in their inventory. With the help Czech company of course.