Defense Land Systems India, the joint venture between Mahindra and Mahindra and BAE Systems today unveiled its Mine Protected Vehicle India (MPVI) at the DefExpo in New Delhi.
Anand Mahindra, Vice President and Managing Director, Mahindra and Mahindra, said the vehicle had been ‘blast tested last week’ and that he was proud of the fact that the vehicle would ‘save lives’.
Brigadier Khutub Hai, retired from the army and Chief Executive, Mahindra Defence Systems, said, “Designed to save the lives of our Defense forces when they encounter mines and roadside bomb attacks, the Mine Protected Vehicle India will be our first new product offering from the joint venture company.”
Andrew Gallagher, the President of BAE Systems India said, “The MPVI is based on BAE Systems’ three decades of protection experience that resulted in the highly successful RG 31 which has a proven track record and is currently in service with US, Canadian, UAE and a number of other forces including the United Nations.”
The MPVI will be manufactured at the Defense Land Systems, India plant at Prithla near Faridabad. To begin with, the plant has the capacity to manufacture 100-120 vehicles a year according to Brigadier Hai. He also said the vehicle had a higher seating in comparison to other similar vehicles and was highly affordable, also claiming his company’s intent to aim for 100 per cent Indian components for the vehicle.
According to a company release, the MPVI is a 6×6 wheeled armored vehicle with a V-shaped mono hull chassis that is to direct the force of the blast away from the occupants. It can carry 18 personnel including driver and co-driver. The company says the vehicle is ‘ideally suited for anti-terrorist and anti-Naxal operations.
Th vehicle can withstand explosions of the magnitude of 21 kilograms of TNT under the center of any wheel and 14 kilograms under the crew compartment.