IDEX 2015

VBCI gets greater firepower [IDX15D2]

24 February 2015

Nexter Systems is showing its latest export version of the VBCI (Véhicule Blindé de Combat d’Infanterie) (8x8) in the infantry fighting vehicle (IFV) configuration, fitted with the company’s new two-person T40 turret. This combination recently underwent a series of firing trials in a country in the Middle East. Nexter Systems (Stands CP-240 and CP-260) declined to reveal the country, but IDEX Show Daily sources indicated this was Qatar, which has a requirement for about 82 8x8 IFVs.

In French Army service, the VBCI is fitted with a one-person turret armed with a M811 25mm dual-feed cannon, but export customers prefer a two-person turret armed with a large-calibre weapon. The T40 turret is of all-welded aluminium construction with a layer of appliqué armour for a higher level of protection.

It is armed with a CTAI 40mm Case Telescoped Armament System (CTAS) that was qualified together with its initial tranche of ammunition in mid-2014 by the French and UK governments. The 40mm CTAS is now the largest medium-calibre cannon programme in Europe, having been specified by the French Army for the Jaguar (6x6) reconnaissance vehicle, and by the British Army for the General Dynamics UK Specialist Vehicle – Scout and the Lockheed Martin Warrior Capability Sustainment Programme.

Mounted on the roof of the turret is a remote-controlled 7.62mm machine gun, and provision is made on either side of the turret for an anti-tank guided weapon (ATGW).

Other features include all-electric gun control equipment, stabilised sights for commander and gunner that feature day and thermal channels, and a laser rangefinder.

Bernard Berger, VBCI export products manager at Nexter Systems, told the IDEX Show Daily: “There is considerable flexibility in the design of the T40 turret” and it is “adaptable to the final customer requirements, for example, for whichever ATGW is used by the customer”.

In addition to being installed on the VBCI (8x8) platform, the T40 turret is being marketed for installation on other chassis, tracked and wheeled.

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