The New Zealand Government has given its Ministry of Defence (MoD) approval to proceed to contract negotiations to equip the New ZealBnd Army with Light ArmolJred Vehicles designed and built by General Motors Defence. New Zealand MoD will contract to buy 105 LAVIIJ vehicles with deliveries due to begin in 2002.
The New Zealand announcement marks another international success for the LAV III that has already been selected by the am'led forces of Canada, Denmark, Sweden, Ireland and Switzerland. The power, payload and performance of the LAV III have also made it a leading contender to fill the Brigade Combat Team requirements for the U.S. Army.
The LAV III is a full-time four-wheel drive, selective eight~wheel drive armoured vehicle with a combat weight of 16300 kg (38,000 Ibs.). It can attain speeds of 100 km/h (62 mph) and has a maximum range of 500 kilometers (312 miles) -It will be delivered to the New Zealand Army in an armoured personnel carrier configuration where it will replace the Army's fleet of aging tracked M113 personnel carriers.
"We are pleased and proud to be providing the New Zealand Army with leading edge technology and capability, said Bill Pettipas, Executive Director of General Motors Defence. We look forward to working with the New Zealand Ministry of Defence and the New Zealand Army in both supplying and providing long term support for this new vehicle fleet."
The New Zealand approval is the second major order to be announced this month by GM Defence. The Australian Depal1ment of Defence announced August B that it had placed an order for 150 ASLA V vehicles valued at $330 million. Assembly of the New Zealand vehicle fleet will take place at the GM Defence main assembly operations in London, Ontario. The order is facilitated by the Canadian Commercial Corporation (CCC). an export sales agency of the Government of Canada that specializes in sales to foreign governments. CCC
will ad as prime contractor for this multi"vehicle order.
GM Defence is a group of GM-owned business units engaged in the design and production of Light Armoured Vehicles and supporting turret systems for mili1ary use ar'ound the world. The group comprises research, design and manufacturing facilities in London, Ontario; GoletaJ California; Detroit Michigan; Adelaide, Australia and Kreuzlingen, Switzerland. Operations within GM Defence have more than 20 years of experience in the design, manufacture and delivery of a unique family of light armoured vehicles. Those vehicles are in service with the United States Marine Corps, the United States N8tion81 Guard, the Canadian Forces and with other military forces around the world.