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French company Soframe to supply 28 armored recovery trucks to Belgian army.

| 2019

The French company Soframe has just won a € 31.9m contract for the production of 28 recovery vehicles for the logistics units of the Belgian Motorized Brigade. The Belgian Chief of Defense (CHOD), General Marc Compernol, had certified it: the acquisition of Combat and Protected Recovery Vehicles (CRV / PRV) would materialize in 2018, Nathan Gain reports on ForcesOperations.

French company Soframe to supply 28 armored recovery trucks to Belgian army
A 3D visual of the HRV prototype unveiled by Soframe during Eurosatory 2018 (Illustration source: Soframe )

The strategic vision of former Belgian Defense Minister Steven Vandeput clearly emphasized the urgent need to make up "as much as possible the delay in re-equipping the logistics capacity with armored vehicles, adapted to the reality of a theater of operations where there is a permanent threat outside the compounds. Promise held, with only seven days of "delay," Nathan Gain emphasized.

This contract, won against Tatra, Iveco and Scania, includes the delivery of 15 CRVs and 13 PRVs as well as a multi-year open contract for technical assistance. By 2022, these vehicles will replace the thirty or so Renault Kerax 385.40 8X4 tow trucks in service since 2001 within the 4th, 18th and 29th Logistic Battalions of the Ground Component (Land Force).

Both the CRV and the PRV will be developed based on the Heavy Recovery Vehicle (HRV), whose prototype was unveiled last June during Eurosatory 2018. Like the principle applied for the Army's PPLD program, Soframe now works in partnership with its sister company JIGE (formerly JIGE Lohr) to refine the development of HRV according to the wishes of the Belgian army. The first units of each version will be delivered before the end of 2020, Soframe adds.

Based on a Mercedes 8x8 chassis, the HRV combines the functions of breakdown, towing and evacuation of heavy vehicles. With a range of 600 km, the HRV is capable of towing a 44-tonne vehicle and lifting up to 32 tons. But the emphasis is also placed on the protection of the crew through a pressurized cabin built with basic level 2 ballistic protection. Finally, the HRV incorporates a close self-defense capability, with the addition of a remotely operated turret on the cabin.


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