Vyskov/Libava. The PUMA AIFV demonstrated its superior capabilities over a six-week period during mobility, transportability and live firing trials in the Czech Republic. These rigorous trials form part of the procurement program by the Czech Republic for new armoured infantry fighting vehicles. The Czech Republic is planning to buy 210 vehicles in seven variants with the delivery of the first infantry fighting vehicles scheduled for 2020.
The PUMA AIFV is one of five selected vehicles and convinced in particular during the live firing trials compared to the other participating vehicles, which are Rheinmetall’s Lynx, two BAE CV90 and General Dynamic’s Ascod.
The vehicles were put through their paces during six weeks of static and dynamic trials demonstrating their respective mobility, wading and gap crossing capabilities. According to high ranking Czech participants at the VIP day the PUMA AIFV was judged as the vehicle with the highest firing accuracy compared to the other trial vehicles achieving 100% accuracy also during dynamic firing exercises.
Projekt System & Management GmbH (PSM) is responsible for the new mainstay of Germany’s mechanized infantry. In June 2015, the German Bundeswehr took formal delivery of this world’s most advanced AIFV. The first PUMA AIFV have been in service with mechanized elements of the German Army for over two years now. Training and fielding are in full swing. Until today, more than 135 systems have been delivered with the final delivery of all 350 vehicles scheduled for 2020.
The PUMA AIFV combines high strategic and tactical mobility with maximum crew protection and immense firepower, bringing these military imperatives into a state of equilibrium never achieved before. Thus, PUMA AIFV fulfils these often conflicting military demands in an unrivalled quality. Especially, the innovative approach to situational awareness and partnership between the entire crew and vehicle have convinced during the trials in the Czech Republic.
The PUMA AIFV is a fully tested, qualified and fielded system. PUMA AIFV is neither an upgrade of an old vehicle platform nor of a previous concept, but a completely new development with the aim of providing soldiers with the best vehicle for close combat operations in symmetric and asymmetric warfare.
The PUMA AIFV is the only the AIFV platform which surpasses the highest protection levels according to NATO standards. The protection system includes complete mine protection against the largest known anti-tank mines, 360 ° RPG protection and the self defence system against modern guided anti-tank missiles. Due to the extremely high protection level, the AIFV PUMA was also the heaviest vehicle during the trials in the Czech Republic. Nonetheless, the PUMA AIFV was still one of the fastest vehicles in off road terrain and can compete with any modern main battle tank because of its 1,100 hp engine and innovative decoupled running gear.
The excellent stabilized optronic-equipment with hunter killer capability in connection with the 30mm main weapon and programmable (airburst) ammunition leads to superior effect on the battlefield. The PUMA AIFV safely and effectively engages main battle tanks and other hard targets up to a distance of 4,000 m with the integrated ballistic protected SPIKE missile launcher.
Its network-enabled warfare capabilities (including the Future Soldier System and Battlefield Management System) make the PUMA AIFV a key element in any future operational scenario.
The PUMA AIFV was designed from the beginning with maximum growth potential in mind. Among other things, this is evident in the systematic use of open interfaces, enabling electronic connection of new systems in the future as well as integration of alternative protection modules in response to emerging threats.
The training resources for the PUMA AIFV are cutting edge too. For instance, by adding limited additional equipment, each individual vehicle system can be converted to a combat simulator which can be either used as an autonomous training platform or if linked at platoon level. Moreover, a globally deployable, containerized evaluation and control cell enables simultaneous training with up to four vehicles, preparing crews for a multitude of different combat scenarios.
Measuring approximately nine cubic metres, the vehicle’s protected fighting compartment permits integration of various mission kits: to name but a few, PUMA AIFV-based reconnaissance, medevac and armoured recovery vehicles are all equally feasible.
The German Bundeswehr intends to order further PUMA AIFV in different variants.
The German PUMA AIFV industry has committed to cooperate in manufacturing and after sales services for PUMA AIFV for the Czech Army with Czech Companies. Electrical cables for the German PUMA AIFV are already been manufactured in the Czech Republic, as well as the sensors of the fire suppression and fire extinguishing system. Furthermore, the tracks for all PUMA AIFV could be manufactured in the Czech Republic in the near future. The German and Czech customers will both benefit from a joint production and the common use of the system in their armies. This cooperation could become the nucleus of a growing international user community for AIFV PUMA similar to the international user groups for MBT LEOPARD 2.