New VPS 2 patrol vehicle now in service with French Special Forces
- SOFINS 2019 News Online Show Daily
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During the SOFINS 2019 International Special Forces Operations Equipment Exhibition, the French Army Special Forces unveiled the new VPS 2 that was acquired as part of an urgent requirement program to replace the first generation of VPS (Véhicule de Patrouille Spéciale - Special Patrol Vehicle).
VPS 2 long-range patrol vehicle of the French Army Special Forces at SOFINS 2019 live demonstration. April 4, 2019. (Picture source Army Recognition)
The VPS 2 is based on the British Fox Long Range Patrol Vehicle developed and designed by the British company Jankel, and manufactured under license from Jankel by the Technamm facility located in Southern France. According to the French Special Forces, the vehicle is an urgent requirement while waiting for the delivery of the VLFS (Véhicule Léger pour Forces Spéciales - Light Vehicle for Special Forces) which is under development by the French company Arquus. The VPS 2 will remain in service for a maximum period of 10 years.
The order was placed in response to an urgent requirement by the French MoD for vehicles that can operate in specific regions such as West Africa, where the LRPV is well suited to this type of terrain.
The VPS 2 can accommodate up to 6 soldiers. The vehicle is designed to perform long-range missions over long periods. Its platform firepower, maneuverability, and supportability make it a highly versatile vehicle, ideal for many roles, both in rural and urban situations. The vehicle offers highly mobile fire support and tactical force protection platform and caters for a range of weaponry with configurable mounts at locations around the platform.
The VPS 2 is based on a 4x4 Toyota all-terrain chassis. It has an open top configuration without side doors, a requirement from the French Special Forces. The vehicle has a gross weight of 4.2 tons with a maximum payload of 1,700 kg. The VPS 2 can reach a maximum road speed of 170 km/h, with a maximum cruising range of 1,500 km.
The top of the vehicle is fitted with a ring mount weapon station with a 360° traverse. It can be armed with a 7.62 or 12.7mm heavy machine gun, or a 40mm automatic grenade launcher or a Dillon M134, a 7.62×51mm NATO six-barrel rotary machine gun. One more 7.62mm FN MAG machine gun is mounted on swivel station in front of the commander's seat.