21 April 2016
URO x4 Vamtac ST5 (photo : Shephard, Miltech)
Delivery of the first set of URO 4x4 Vamtac ST5 vehicles to Indonesia as part of the country’s ForceShield air defence programme are underway.
A spokesperson from Thales confirmed to Shephard at Defence Services Asia 2016 that URO were in the early stages of delivering the first batch of what is a ‘significant quantity’ of vehicles.
Thales is the prime contractor for the programme as the Vamtac vehicles are fitted with the company’s Rapid Ranger launcher and Starstreak air defence missiles. A source told Shephard that the system is in the integration phase and about 20 vehicles will be delivered.
The Vamtac vehicles are just one component of the ForceShield air defence network that will equip five Indonesian Army air defence batteries.
Other elements include the Ground Master 200 radar, fire control system and Land Rovers fitted with the Lightweight Medium Launcher and Starstreak. Integration there is being completed by local Indonesian industry partner PT Len.
A Vamtac 4x4 vehicle fitted with the Rapid Ranger and Starstreak was displayed on the URO stand at DSA exhibition in Malaysia but before the exhibition started the Starstreak missiles were removed and the Thales RapidRanger logo on the launcher was covered up.
It is likely that Thales’ Malaysian industry partner, Weststar subsidiary Global Komited, was unhappy that the system they are integrating onto their GK-M1 vehicle was being displayed on another chassis.
The Thales spokesperson said that it is up to the governments to select which vehicles they want and the Starstreak launchers will be integrated onto them.
A source told Shephard that a ‘small batch’ of Vamtac vehicles are also being delivered to Singapore, but could not confirm numbers. URO is marketing Vamtac to Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore.
The Malaysian Army already has over 100 Vamtacs bought under a contract signed in 2008-09 that include 25 fitted with the Igla air defence system, 60 weapon carrying vehicles and 18 vehicles that tow a 105mm light gun and store artillery rounds.