UK tests Ajax armored vehicle with Saab's Mobile Camouflage System

The Household Cavalry Regiment has rigorously tested the capabilities of Ajax in real-time battlefield conditions. The latest trials showcased the Ajax equipped with the advanced Mobile Camouflage System (MCS) developed by Saab, a leading company in the defense and security sector.
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Ajax is equipped with the Mobile Camouflage System (MCS) developed by Saab (Picture source: General Dynamics)

The Ajax armored vehicle, which has garnered attention for its design and capabilities, appears to be undergoing a series of evaluations to determine its effectiveness in various combat situations. The integration of Saab's MCS further enhances its potential.

AJAX is designed and manufactured by General Dynamics. Originating from the United Kingdom, it weighs 38 tonnes, but Ajax can reach up to 42 tonnes. It measures 7.62 m in length, 3.35 m in width, and stands 3.00 m tall. The vehicle can accommodate a crew of three and, in its PMRS variant, it also provides space for an additional seven passengers.

The primary armament of Ajax is a 40 mm CT40 cannon, produced by CTA International. Additionally, it features a 7.62 mm L94A1 coaxial machine gun and a Kongsberg Protector Remote Weapon Station. It's worth noting that during tests in the UK, this station was equipped with the Javelin anti-tank missile.

Powered by an MTU Friedrichshafen V8 engine, Ajax boasts a power output of 600 kW. This power is transmitted to the wheels via a 6-speed Renk HSWL 256B transmission. Thanks to its torsion bar suspension, Ajax offers excellent maneuverability in varied terrains. As for its top speed, it reaches 70 km/h, making it exceptionally fast for a vehicle of its size.

Saab's Mobile Camouflage System (MCS) is designed to conceal moving vehicles. Tailored to fit most platforms, including tanks and armored troop carriers, it provides multispectral protection, which includes protection against dust clouds. The Saab Barracuda MCS is a flexible solution, composed of different materials based on surface properties. A key feature of the MCS is the Cool Cam system, designed to reduce the thermal stress on soldiers and equipment in hot operational environments. In conditions found in deserts where daytime temperatures can exceed 50 degrees Celsius, a combination of insulation and solar radiation reflection is used to prevent the vehicle's surface from overheating. In addition to reducing the internal temperature, the cooler external surface improves conditions for personnel working on and around the vehicle.

Many other options are available to enhance and customize Saab's mobile camouflage system. Multispectral Shading Umbrellas can be used to obstruct enemy thermal and visual reconnaissance, including snipers, while still allowing the user to observe outside. The Vehicle Load Carriage System provides an easy way to store additional equipment, such as ammunition, water, and personal gear, outside the vehicle. When a vehicle equipped with the MCS is placed under an advanced Barracuda camouflage net, the camouflage effectiveness is maximized, making the vehicle virtually invisible to sensors.

The ongoing tests are expected to provide valuable insights into Ajax's performance when paired with innovative camouflage systems like the MCS.