Thales to develop new Bushmaster medevac vehicles for the Netherlands
Thales Australia has secured a new contract to develop and deliver six more Bushmaster medevac vehicles to the Netherlands, continuing the wheeled armoured vehicle’s export successes.
The contract will see a new bespoke medical evacuation (medevac) variant develped for the Dutch, potentially bringing the western European country’s fleet to more than 100 Bushmasters after an initial purchase of 25 vehicles as an urgent operational requirement in 2006.
This was followed by additional vehicles being acquired between 2007 and 2016, including an order for 12 vehicles in 2015.
Thales says more than 60 Australian businesses will be involved in the design and development process for the new variant, securing jobs and investment along the extensive Bushmaster supply chain.
This includes long term Australian suppliers including Wollongong based Bisalloy Steels, AME Systems, Melbourne based DVR Engineering and KAB Seating in Dandenong.
They will be joined by a number of additional Australian SMEs and Dutch company Visser Horti Systems. The latter specialises in the design of clinical white space capabilities for the Royal Netherlands Army. The vehicles are scheduled for delivery in 2021.
The Bushmaster been in service within the Royal Netherlands Army for over 10 years, which has used the on operational service in Afghanistan.
To date, 171 Bushmasters have been exported to seven countries, including: the Netherlands, Fiji, Japan, Jamaica, Indonesia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom.
To read the latest issue of Asia-Pacific Defence Reporter, click here