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French army SOUVIM 2 mine clearing vehicle deployed in Mali

The French Army has recently deployed the Souvim 2 in the North of Mali, a latest generation of mine detection vehicle to increase the operation capacities of engineer troops of the French armed forces. The SOUVIM 2 is a road mine clearing system designed and manufactured by MBDA since 2008.

SOUVIM 2 road mine clearing vehicle deployed in Mali by the French army 925 001
French army SOUVIM 2 road mine clearing vehicle in Mali (source picture  French MoD)

The first SOUVIM 2 vehicles were delivered to the French army in 2010. The SOUVIM 2 was designed for use in mobility support missions, allowing quick clearing of mined paths over long distances behind the lines: over 100 km of track cleared daily, with extensive counter-mining capabilities.

The system relies on the combined action of two vehicles towing mine-activation trailers. The first vehicle is designed to roll over a pressure mine without activating it. It tows a first “mine-triggering trailer” (RDM) whose weight will trigger pressure-sensitive mines and thereby secure the second vehicle’s progress. This latter vehicle tows two further RDMs whose different wheel bases help cover the whole width of the track to be cleared.

According to MBDA, a single SOUVIM 2 team can clear 150 km of roads in one day at a maximum sped of 25 km/h. These vehicles are particularly efficient in securing roads on peacekeeping operations and prior to the insertion of humanitarian aid activities in combat zones.

The SOUVIM 2 is based on the South African Husky, modified for the French mission with additional armor, roll-over escape hatch, air conditioning, communications and a new set of heavy duty wheels adapted from standard tractor supplies.

 SOUVIM 2 road mine clearing vehicle deployed in Mali by the French army 925 002

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