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Military Capabilities

Mexican military parades variety of new equipment

20 September 2016

Mexico unveiled new armoured vehicles and small arms, as well as mock-ups of an indigenously developed aircraft and a new ship during a Military Independence Day parade on 16 September.

The Mexican Marines paraded a single Mack Defense Sherpa Scout armoured patrol vehicle during a 16 September military parade, a design which was considered for procurement several times since 2011. (SEMAR)The Mexican Marines paraded a single Mack Defense Sherpa Scout armoured patrol vehicle during a 16 September military parade, a design which was considered for procurement several times since 2011. (SEMAR)

This year - the 100th anniversary of the Mexican Military and Naval industries - older and newer Mexican-designed and produced armoured vehicles were paraded, the latter included the Kitam 4x4 light armoured vehicle first unveiled in 2014 but which has yet to reach series production.

Mexico's Cimarron armoured personnel carrier (APC), the design for which was first unveiled in February, made its first public appearance during the event. Based on a Mercedes Unimog U5000 chassis, the Cimarron features a fully armoured cab and troop compartment. It remains a prototype and it is not clear yet which role it might fulfil if it does reach series production.

The Mexican Army also unveiled its 40 mm grenade launcher designed for use on the country's FX-05 Xihucóatl assault rifle. A new ultra-compact variant of the FX-05 was also presented. Designated as the Xihucóatl Submachine Gun (PAX) the weapon fires a standard 5.56x45 mm cartridge.

The Mexican Air Force (FAM) displayed its first scaled-down mock-up of its future basic training aircraft, for which development was announced in February. The design is a side-by-side twin-seat single-engine type with a fixed undercarriage, and while no engine details were provided, its shape suggests it will be piston engined.

The Mexican Navy's Marine Corps presented its latest armoured vehicle, a single Mack Defence Sherpa Scout. The navy also paraded a scaled-down mock-up of a new frigate, which appeared to be a DAMEN shipyards SIGMA 10513, armed with a 76 mm Oto Melara Super Rapid canon, featuring vertical missile launching cells on the foredeck and two quadruple missile launchers on the upper deck.

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