29 September 2009
Delivery of combat-ready Warthog on schedule (photo : Stengg)
British soldiers in Afghanistan will be receiving better protection against mines, increased operational mobility, and higher payload when the Warthog All-Terrain Vehicles (ATVs) enter service. ST Kinetics, the land systems arm of ST Engineering, today unveiled the Warthog - an agile, versatile and armoured 'beast of a vehicle' that will be delivered on schedule to the UK Ministry of Defence (UK MOD) from the end of the year.
"We are proud to roll out the first Warthog ATV within UK MOD's demanding delivery schedule and rigorous requirements. This is possible because of the close and productive relationship we have forged with the UK MOD from day one. Being flexible and attentive to their strict requirements and standards has been the key to our hugely successful collaboration to date, and a major differentiator for ST Kinetics among the world's engineering community." ~ SEW Chee Jhuen, President, ST Kinetics"
ST Kinetics have worked extremely hard and demonstrated a very open and pro-active way of working, giving MOD confidence going forward in delivering this project within the required timescales. The WARTHOG itself has proven itself to be a very capable vehicle in tests and trials. I am impressed by the high standards of engineering applied to this vehicle and the quality of the support package; providing our deployed forces with the higher levels of protection and mobility." ~ Brigadier Ian Simpson, DE&S Head of Combat Wheels Group, UK MOD.
More than 100 vehicles worth over £150m (about S$330m) have been bought by the UK MOD in response to an Urgent Operational Requirement (UOR). The UK MOD identified survivability and payload capacity as key operational requirements in the UOR programme.
Anticipating a demanding timeline, ST Kinetics had on its own accord procured production materials and components ahead of the Warthog contract award. To ascertain the vehicle's performance in extreme heat and dust conditions, the company had put a 19 tonne Warthog test-bed vehicle through desert trials in U.A.E. this summer.
A highly agile vehicle that can manoeuvre across difficult terrain, roll across trenches, tackle vertical obstacles, power-up steep gradients and even cling to slopes, the Warthog is based on ST Kinetics' Bronco All Terrain Tracked Carrier (ATTC). The Bronco ATTC is a robust, reliable and proven articulated platform in operation since 2001.
The Warthog will come in four variants - Troop Carrier, Ambulance, Command, and Repair & Recovery. Vehicle deliveries will commence end 2009, with the majority to be delivered in 2010. Twelve UK Armed Forces trainers have already begun operation and maintenance training in Singapore to allow them to start bringing the vehicles into service shortly after delivery.