IAI to compete with Zibar ATV to Israeli tender for commando vehicles

IAI acquires the manufacturing operations of the Zibar off-road tactical vehicle, designed and built by Israeli manufacturer Ido Cohen.

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Zibar Mk.2 ATV as developed for the Mexican army (Picture source: OffRoad Technology)

The Zibar is a family of light, four-wheel drive, military trucks and utility vehicles designed and produced by Israeli racer and fabricator Ido Cohen in 1998. Cohen designed and manufactured the chassis and frame while utilizing commercial off-the-shelf parts such as General Motors crate LS3 383 cid/6.2L 400hp V8 engines (current engine is the LQ4 GM 6L 430 hp (320 kW) at 5,900 rpm V8,) General Motors 4L80E transmission, Atlas II transfer cases and General Motors Dynatrac 60 axles. The current manufacturer is Ido OffRoad Center Ltd (IORC).

The Z family activities being acquired include the Zibar, Zmag – a light version of the platform, and ZED – the armored off-road vehicle. IAI ELTA will design and produce the vehicles in its manufacturing site in Beer Sheva, where RAM vehicles are currently built. The company intends to compete with this vehicle for an upcoming Israel MoD tender for commando vehicles, according to Israel’s Calcalist website. The company plans to adapt and configure the vehicles for military and homeland defense applications, and now, acting as the vehicle design authority will be well-positioned to address specific customer requirements.

“The off-road vehicles fulfill the operational needs of the ground forces for defense, assault, and intelligence.” Yoav Turgeman, IAI VP and CEO of ELTA, explained, “We are excited to collaborate with Ido Cohen, a visionary vehicle manufacturer from Israel. IAI offers a broad range of ground intelligence, robotics, autonomous vehicles, and remote sensing capabilities. Integrating these capabilities on the Z Vehicle Family provides significant added value to the operational capabilities ELTA provides existing and future customers.”