JSW Group, one of India’s largest conglomerates, announced its strategic entry into the defence sector with the establishment of a new business vertical, JSW Defence and Aerospace (JSW Defence). JSW Defence has acquired a majority stake in an extreme off-road vehicle company, Gecko Motors Private Limited, now renamed as JSW Gecko Motors.
The company has secured an order from the Ministry of Defence (Army), Government of India for the manufacture and supply of 96 Specialist Mobility Vehicles (SMVs), branded as ATOR N1200.This order is currently under manufacturing at JSW Gecko’s newly set-up manufacturing unit in Chandigarh, Punjab and will be supplied to the Armed Forces no later than June 2024.
The ATOR N1200 is an local version of the SHERP N1200 amphibious extreme mobility vehicle, designed by UK-based Copato. Copato has entered into a Joint Venture agreement with JSW Defence and JSW Gecko along with technology supply license agreement for the manufacture of Specialist Mobility Vehicles in India with a vision to make India the global production hub for this product.
Viktoria Tverdokhleb, CEO of JSW Gecko stated, “SHERP N 1200 is a transportation solution of the United Nations World Food Program that positively impacts the effectiveness of food transport operations as they allow them to reach locations irrespective of seasonal and weather conditions. We are pleased to have the opportunity to present to the Indian market, and especially to the Defence sector an unique, innovative and technologically advanced Specialist Mobility Vehicles (SMVs) that has no analogues in the world in terms of its capabilities and characteristics and has no competitors in the off-road ability and manoeuvrability. The vehicle’s amphibious capabilities have proven to be indispensable during military service support operations, from supply operations, medical evacuations, to the Emergency Services saving lives and providing support in extreme conditions and working under severe conditions and extreme terrain. SMVs have also proven themselves as a light military transport, capable of going to any remote location where no other vehicles can access.”
JSW Defence has appointed Commodore Madhu Gentela (Retd), NM, an ex-Naval officer with over 30 years’ experience in military technology, to lead the Group’s Defence business.