Germany to supply 100 Rheinmetall MAN HX81 tank transporters to Ukraine

The German newspaper Bild, which has access to both Ukrainian and German lists, writes that the German Federal Ministry of Defense, at the insistence of German Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s office, has removed all heavy weapons from the list of military aid to Ukraine. Hence, upgraded 4x4 vehicles, armored trucks, and some 100 Rheinmetall MAN HX81 heavy tractor-trailers are cleared for transfer to the Ukrainian army, as they are non-lethal equipment.
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Rheinmetall MAN HX81 heavy tank transporter (Picture source: Bundeswehr)

Germany has agreed to ramp up the supply of weapons and military vehicles to Kyiv, including HX 81 tractors. The vehicle is based on an 8×8 Rheinmetall MAN HX-series chassis, long since put to the test by the British armed forces. A careful account of Bundeswehr (German army) requirements was taken right from the development phase: a Euro 5 V8 engine with an output of 500 kW/ 680hp gives the vehicle the forward propulsion needed to the move its permissible gross train weight of up to 130 tonnes. In response to the hazards of modern military operations, the driver’s cab provides up to four soldiers with a high degree of protection against ballistic, landmine and IED threats.

These tractor-trailer systems will be used for transporting tracked and wheeled vehicles, containers and heavy equipment. Two cable winches with a pulling force of up to 20 tonnes each enable the loading and unloading of defective equipment. A self-recovery winch with a traction force of 8 tonnes is mounted to the front of the vehicle. Designed for maximum mobility, the tractor-trailer system will also be able to operate for long distances in areas with poor infrastructure.

The tractor-trailer system consists of a tractor from RMMV and a low bed semi-trailer for carrying various payloads. This results in a carrying capacity of up to 70 tonnes, meaning that the tractor-trailer system can carry up to the latest Leopard 2A7 main battle tank, for example.