Textron Systems discusses vehicles for Ukraine and European market
Textron Systems Marine & Land Systems is world-renowned for its design, manufacture and support of next generation armored combat vehicles, having seen its solutions integrated across international militaries and security forces. This September, the company will be sponsoring the Armoured Vehicles Eastern Europe conference at a time when regional spending on land systems has seen an upturn.
During a wider discussion on the armoured vehicles market and the company’s portfolio, Defence IQ spoke with Textron Systems Marine & Land Systems Vice President of Business Development Jonathan Dalrymple to get his thoughts on how the business is tackling the Eastern European defence market.
Defence IQ: What does Textron Systems Marine & Land Systems make of current armoured vehicle market activity in the Eastern European region?
Jonathan Dalrymple: Due to the recent increase in security concerns and unrest in the Eastern European region, we are seeing an increased demand for armoured vehicles. The European desire for armoured vehicles includes high levels of protection as well as highly mobile and dependable systems that can fit into a modern C4ISR (Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance) system. These ideal vehicles are nodes in the battlefield network that allow for end-to-end solutions from sensor to shooter. Our COMMANDO™ line of vehicles is a perfect example of a vehicle that meets these conditions. Our Textron Systems geospatial software and products integrate seamlessly with our COMMANDO vehicles to provide our fighters with not only a world class armoured vehicle, but a world class fighting system.
DIQ: Textron Systems Marine & Land Systems this year announced the first export sale of its SCTV to Ukraine. Why has this solution proved an asset to this country and what is the potential for further business here? How has Textron successfully nurtured a partnership with Ukroboronprom?
JD: For the short term requirement, the Survivable Combat Tactical Vehicles (SCTV™) were used to upgrade and harden the Ukrainian forces’ High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicles (HMMWV). The long term challenge that Ukraine is facing is to find a solution to retire various series of older, more tired and less protected HMMWVs and replace them with modern, highly-protected utility vehicles that are reasonable to operate, while providing world class protection.
The HMMWV was not originally designed for the asymmetric threats facing everyone today. However, the levels of protection and the thought that went into the design and functionality of the SCTV makes me proud to present it to users, who understand the benefits of our survivability capsule.
As for our partnership with Ukroboronprom, we have developed outstanding relationships with leaders throughout the company and believe they will be a key player in the market. Together, we have many opportunities to move forward as a team.
DIQ: Blast and IED concerns topped our poll of protection concerns for European nations in last year’s armoured vehicles survey. What does Textron Systems Marine & Land Systems provide in way of technology and expertise to mitigate these threats? And what other unique factors put Textron Systems Marine & Land vehicle solutions above competition in the Eastern European operating environment?
JD: Textron Systems has invested a lot of time and resources into developing products to best help the war fighter. We have our own patented recipe of steel, and the material that is used to weld the steel pieces together is our own patented formula. These developments, as well as our ability to simulate blasts and model the affects during an explosion, help mitigate the threats.
Many companies build to a North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) specification. That has value, but there are many more threats to the people inside a vehicle that are not covered by the NATO specification. Our designers and engineers build our vehicles as safe as we can possibly make them. Unlike other highly protected vehicles on the market, we have not sacrificed vehicle mobility with the increase in survivability. Our COMMANDO™ line of vehicles has demonstrated unparalleled mobility in a wide array of real world conditions. Crew survivability and mission accomplishment are always at the forefront of our efforts.
DIQ: Understanding different regional standards has been cited by many companies in our research as one of the key challenges for international business in this market. How has Textron Systems Marine & Land Systems been able to manage these standards and expectations at the multinational level?
JD: There is a trend today to move more towards NATO Standardization Agreements (STANAGS). This is not only for the members of NATO, but for other countries as well. This is a trend we have been monitoring closely and work alongside when necessary.
DIQ: Textron Systems Marine & Land Systems will be joining the discussion at this year’s Armoured Vehicles Eastern Europe conference in Romania. What can we expect to discover from you, and on what are you hoping to gain clearer insight?
JD: After recently delivering our most reliable vehicle yet – the Canadian Army’s Tactical Armoured Patrol Vehicle (TAPV) – we believe our vehicles are suitable to meet any mission needs from any region of the world. Those who want to learn more about these vehicles at the Armoured Vehicles Eastern Europe conference are welcome to come to our booth. We find events like this important for this reason – networking and building relationships with our customers. We always like to listen to our customers’ challenges and use our flexible manufacturing efforts and vehicle designs to help provide solutions.
Armoured Vehicles Eastern Europe 2016 will take place on the 20-21 September in Bucharest, Romania.