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Rheinmetall from Germany reveals a plan to produce in Ukraine Fuchs and KF41 Lynx armored vehicles.

| 2023

Rheinmetall AG, a leading German defense company, is poised to enhance its collaboration with Ukraine. As reported by "WirtschaftsWoche", the company's CEO, Armin Papperger, revealed plans for the production of advanced armored vehicles, including the Fuchs 6x6 and KF41 Lynx Infantry Fighting Vehicles (IFVs), in an interview published on December 2, 2023.
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German-made Rheinmetall Lynx KF41 IFV Infantry Fighting Vehicle. (Picture source Army Recognition Group)

The anticipated contract, expected to be finalized early next year, marks a substantial expansion of Rheinmetall's role in Ukraine's defense capabilities. Papperger stated, “Once the contract is signed, we want to have the first Fuchs vehicle ready in Ukraine in about six to seven months, and the first KF41 Lynx within twelve to 13 months.” Production in Ukraine is set to commence by late summer 2024 for the Fuchs, and potentially by summer 2025 for the Lynx, a formidable competitor to the Puma series.

In a proactive move, Rheinmetall has already initiated the manufacture of the first ten Lynx vehicles in Germany and Hungary, in a joint effort with Ukraine. Papperger emphasized the potential for a significant increase in production rates within Ukraine following an initial ramp-up phase. The German federal government has indicated its willingness to grant the necessary export licenses, paving the way for this ambitious project.

The swift advancement of this collaboration can be attributed to the already strong partnership between Rheinmetall and Ukraine, with Rheinmetall being the largest defense industry partner for the country. In 2022, Rheinmetall received orders amounting to approximately 900 million euros, a figure that surged to around 2.5 billion euros in 2023. Papperger anticipates even higher order volumes in the coming year.

Rheinmetall's engagement with Ukraine extends beyond vehicle production. The company is already involved in the maintenance of armored vehicles in Ukraine and has been instrumental in training Ukrainian workers in Germany for this purpose. The commencement of Lynx series production in Hungary further exemplifies the company's expanding footprint in the region.

This move signifies a robust commitment from Rheinmetall towards bolstering Ukraine's defense infrastructure, reflecting a growing partnership between the two entities in the realm of defense and security.

The Rheinmetall KF41 Lynx is a state-of-the-art Infantry Fighting Vehicle (IFV), designed and manufactured by the German company Rheinmetall Defence. This advanced combat vehicle is engineered to meet the diverse and demanding requirements of modern warfare. It features a modular architecture, allowing for significant adaptability in terms of armament, protection, and mission-specific configurations. The Lynx is equipped with advanced armor and active protection systems, providing exceptional survivability against a range of threats including anti-tank missiles, improvised explosive devices, and direct fire. Its firepower is centered around an automatically loaded cannon, complemented by anti-tank guided missiles and a coaxial machine gun, offering formidable offensive capabilities. Designed for high mobility in varied terrains, the Lynx can transport infantry while providing direct fire support, making it a critical asset in both offensive and defensive operations.

The Fuchs (Fox) 6x6 Armored Personnel Carrier (APC), also developed by Rheinmetall, is a well-established vehicle in military service. Known for its reliability and versatility, the Fuchs APC has been utilized by numerous armed forces around the world. The vehicle's 6x6 all-wheel drive system grants it excellent mobility across different terrains, from urban environments to rugged off-road conditions. The Fuchs is designed to transport troops safely in conflict zones, offering robust protection against small arms fire, shell splinters, and chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear (CBRN) threats. Its modular design allows for various configurations, including command and control, reconnaissance, and medical evacuation, making it a multifunctional platform in military operations. The Fuchs has seen extensive use in various international missions, highlighting its effectiveness and adaptability in a wide range of operational scenarios.

During the Eurosatory defense exhibition that was held in France, Paris, German Defense Company Rheinmetall unveiled the latest version of its Fuchs wheeled armored vehicle called Fuchs A9.

Rheinmetall from Germany reveals a plan to produce in Ukraine Fuchs and KF41 Lynx armored vehicles 925 002
The latest version of the FUCHS A9 6x6 armored vehicle produced by the German Defense Company Rheinmetall. (Picture source Army Recognition Group)

Defense News December 2023

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