Thundering in the desert [CANSEC2016D1]

25 May 2016

Canada’s family-owned Cambli Group (Booth 237), which has been manufacturing armoured trucks for more than 50 years, earlier this month displayed its new Thunder 2 second-generation tactical vehicle in Jordan.

Designed specifically for the weather and desert conditions in the Middle East, Thunder 2 is targeted at civilian protection and public security, fast tactical interventions, and secure transport of dignitaries in conflict zones. The version demonstrated has been manufactured to meet the needs of an undisclosed Middle Eastern client who, according to the company, was extremely satisfied with the vehicle. The client is stated to have compared the experience with going to a tailor and getting a custom-made suit that fits perfectly!

Available in 4x4, 6x6, armoured personnel carrier, command post, ambulance and wrecker versions, Thunder 2 is based on a Kenworth chassis, with a Cummins ISC 315hp turbocharged engine and an Allison 3000 RDS five-speed automatic transmission. It can carry a crew of 12 and travel at a top speed of 130km/h. Equipped with three totally independent extreme air-conditioning cooling systems to keep inside temperatures to around 20°C, Thunder 2 has been tested at the highest desert temperatures of 60°C, and can be fitted with a high-capacity front blade for emergency road clearance and a high-power hydraulic battering ram.

It is certified to resist high-calibre weapons and armour-piercing bullets, and has a V-shaped blast protection hull to B7 level. Two large bulletproof windows at the front and either side offer a wide angle of view for driver and commander. Each side of the hull is also fitted with three small bulletproof windows with firing ports. A small revolving turret on the roof can rotate 360°, which can be used by a sniper or fitted with a machine gun. An interesting feature is the retractable hydraulic armour plates at the bottom of the vehicle, which can be deployed by the driver to protect police officers or soldiers in case of fire under the vehicle, or to evacuate wounded people under protection.

Cambli Group is in the final stages of signing contracts for the Thunder 2 with several Middle Eastern countries. Its forerunner, the Thunder 1, is in service with many police forces in Canada.

(364 words)