Victorian technology for Lithuania’s Rheinmetall 8x8 Boxer ICV/IFVs

A Dandenong company’s revolutionary transportable power and dehumidification packs will go into service with Rheinmetall’s Boxer Infantry Fighting Vehicles in Lithuania.

Vilkas Lithuanian version of German Boxer 8x8 armoured vehicle 925 001
Vilkas, Lithuanian version of the German Boxer, 8x8 armoured vehicle. The Lithuanian Boxers will be equiped with a 30mm cannon remotely-controlled turret (Picture source: Army Recognition)

Rheinmetall Defence Australia and Victoria's Heuch, which has been a supplier to the Australian Defence Force since shortly after its inception in 1970, announced a major export agreement: under the agreement with LAND 400 Phase 2, Rheinmetall Defence Australia, family-owned Heuch, will design, develop and manufacture 88 made-to-order mobile units that will increase the lifetime of batteries operating in each Boxer vehicle. The mobile unit is placed next to each stationary Boxer and delivers a charge to batteries ensuring it is immediately operational.

The technology, designed at the company’s Dandenong South operations, will also incorporate a dehumidifier that delivers dry air into the interior of the vehicle when it is stationary to eliminate corrosion and mould.

The export agreement will form part of the Boxer Infantry Fighting Vehicle (IFV) Project in Lithuania, which will be delivered by ARTEC – a joint venture between Rheinmetall and KMW.

The Republic of Lithuania has signed a contract for the procurement of 88 Boxer vehicles in four Infantry Fighting Vehicle versions, called “Vilkas” within the Lithuanian armed forces. The Infantry Fighting Vehicles will be equipped with a remote-controlled turret with a 30mm cannon and an anti-tank missile.

Rheinmetall is bidding its Boxer Combat Reconnaissance Vehicle in Australia through the LAND 400 Phase 2 program, and the vehicle is also being offered to the UK through the ARTEC joint venture bid for the Mechanised Infantry Vehicle (MIV) program.

The Boxer has also just been selected by the Republic of Slovenia for a new Central Battalion Battle Group.

Under the German company's bid for the project, which is worth up to $5 billion, 225 combat reconnaissance vehicles for the Australian Army will be built in Queensland if Rheinmetall is successful.

The government will make a decision on the LAND 400 Phase 2 project in the first half of this year, with the national security committee expected to make a decision on the project this month.