British Royal Marines test Polaris MRZR-D4 lightweight off-road 4x4 vehicle


According to information published by the British Navy on July 23, 2021, British Royal Marines have tested American-made Polaris MRZR-D4, new lightweight all-terrain 4x4 vehicles.
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British Royal Marines have been testing the Polaris MRZR-D4, a new lightweight all-terrain 4x4 vehicle. (Picture source British Navy)


The American-made Polaris MRZR-D4 is an ultralight 4x4 off-roader that can carry up to four commandos and reach speeds of 96 km/h for rapid movement across the battlefield. It is ideally equipped for raiding missions that Royal Marines are now focusing on as part of their modernization and restructuring, which will ensure they are ready to counter the threats of a modern era.

The British Royal Marines have been trialing these vehicles across the sand dunes at Braunton Burrows in North Devon – a place where the latest amphibious warfare techniques have been worked on since it was used for preparations for D-Day in the Second World War.

The MRZR lacks the armor and carrying ability of the tracked Viking all-terrain vehicles – the main troop and mortar carriers of the British Royal Marines’ Armoured Support Group – but their purpose is to get to enemy positions quicker, and get out faster too.

The Polaris MRZR-D4 can be used to carry supplies and equipment – like ammunition, water and fuel – for commando missions, but can also be fitted with machine guns and grenade launchers for added firepower. It can be used for quick attacks and withdrawals, but also for logistical resupply and casualty evacuation and also helpful is that it can fit in Chinook helicopters, meaning marines can be dropped quickly to their location with the MRZR.

This vehicle is being assessed for its usefulness as commandos begin to operate in small teams of up to 12, moving quickly across the battlefield to hit enemy infrastructure – like radar or missile installations. British Royal Marines have recently experimented with swarms of drones to support these missions.

The MRZR-D4 is a 4x4 off-road vehicle developed and manufactured by the American company Polaris Defense. The vehicle was unveiled for the first time at the 2016 Special Operations Forces Industry Conference (SOFIC) in May 2016.

The MRZR-D4 is designed to carry four military personnel with two seats at the front, two seats at the middle and a cargo area at the rear. The upper part of the vehicle is fitted with a roll cage. The vehicle has a length of 3.55 m, a width of 1.51 m, and a height of 1.87 m. It has the capacity to carry a payload of 680 kg.

The MRZR-D4 is powered by a four-stroke SOHC three-cylinder turbo diesel engine coupled to an automatic, continuously variable transmission.


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