ARQUUS from France to deliver 300 VLRA 4x4 light tactical vehicles to Morocco

According to information announced by the French Company ARQUUS during a press conference on March 10, 2021, ARQUUS will deliver 300 latest generations of VLRA (Véhicule de Liaison de Reconnaissance et d'Appui / Liaison, Reconnaissance and Support Vehicle), also called VLRA 2, 4x4 all-terrain multirole tactical to the Moroccan armed forces.
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The new generation of VLRA 4x4 light tactical multirole vehicle at Eurosatory defense exhibition in Paris, June 2012. (Picture source Army Recognition)

Morocco becomes one of the most important customers of the French Defense Industry. In January 2020, it was announced that Morocco will acquire an undisclosed number of CAESAR 155mm wheeled self-propelled howitzer manufactured by the French company Nexter as well as VL-MICA surface-to-air missile systems developed by the company MBDA.

In the naval field, the French defense industry will provide maintenance services for a number of Moroccan navy warships. According to the SIPRI Stockholm International Peace Research Institute arms trade database for year 2020, Morocco to acquire 36 CAESAR, 36 Sherpa 4x4 light tactical armored vehicles,s and an undisclosed number of VL-MICA short-range air defense missile systems.

The VLRA (Véhicule de Liaison de Reconnaissance et d'Appui / Liaison, Reconnaissance and Support Vehicle) new generation was designed and developed by the French company ACMAT now part of ARQUUS, formerly Renault Truck Defense. The new VLRA was unveiled in 2012 during the defense exhibition Eurosatory in Paris, France.

The new VLRA is a development of the ACMAT VLRA that was developed in the late 1950s specifically for operations in desert conditions. The new VLRA has a conventional layout similar to the previous version with the engine at the front, cab in the center, and cargo area at the rear.

The latest generation of VLRA is based on a 4x4 chassis with a payload between 2 and 4.5 tons or up to 17 military personnel. Compared with the VLRA1, the new vehicle is heavier, has a larger cargo capacity. The vehicle by a EURO 5 emissions compliant diesel engine coupled to a six-speed ZF manual or five-speed automatic gearbox. It has a maximum cruising range of 1,400 km and can reach a top speed of 110 km/h. The cargo area at the rear of the vehicle can be configured to perform a wide range of missions.

The new VLRA can be armed with different types of small weapons including 7.62 or 12.7mm machine guns as well as 40mm automatic grenade launcher or air defense missile system.