Force Protection has completed a series of discussions with potential suppliers across four states as it refines its Australian manufacturing plans for the $1 billion protected mobility vehicle contract.
The Australian Government in May announced that Force Protection was one of three Australian-based solutions to be given the opportunity to win the contract to manufacture up to 1300 next-generation protected mobility vehicles, under the ‘Land 121 Phase 4’ program.
Force Protection has again met with potential suppliers as well as State Government ministers and industry representatives in New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria and South Australia.
Force Protection Chief Executive Officer, Michael Moody, said discussions with suppliers last year had opened up several manufacturing options for its Ocelot vehicle across the four states, and it was important to further progress these discussions now that the company had been short-listed for the Australian Government contract.
“The reception we have received from both suppliers and government representatives over the past couple of weeks has been extremely positive, and confirmed our view that we can build a world class vehicle utilising the best of Australian military and automotive manufacturing expertise and know-how,” Mr Moody said.
“We are committed to operating in Australia and we look forward to making further announcements about our plans.”
Force Protection was one of the companies recently down-selected by the UK Ministry of Defence to tender for the Light Protected Patrol Vehicle Program – Demonstration, Production and Support Phases and has been awarded a contract by the UK MoD for the supply of two Ocelot light protected patrol vehicles for testing.
Its Ocelot vehicle has undergone significant development in conjunction with leading independent technology provider Ricardo to provide high levels of survivability together with exceptional cross country mobility, flexibility and value for money.
The Ocelot’s capabilities have already been proven by a sustained program of blast, ballistic, automotive and manoeuvrability tests conducted since 2009.
The Ocelot can be maintained and repaired quickly in the field to ensure maximum availability, while its unique modular design enables the vehicle to be reconfigured in theatre within two hours to meet a variety of different roles, such as patrol, fire support and protected logistics.
Force Protection continues to test and refine the Ocelot vehicle, taking in to account the specific operational requirements for the Australian Defence Force.
Force Protection, Inc. is a leading designer, developer and manufacturer of survivability solutions, including blast- and ballistic-protected wheeled vehicles currently deployed by the U.S. military and its allies to support armed forces and security personnel in conflict zones. The Company’s specialty vehicles, including the Buffalo, Cougar and related variants, are designed specifically for reconnaissance and urban operations and to protect their occupants from landmines, hostile fire, and improvised explosive devices (IEDs, commonly referred to as roadside bombs).