Japan has taken delivery of a second batch of four Bushmaster 4x4 protected mobility vehicles for the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force (JGSDF), manufacturer Thales Australia confirmed on 24 May.
The company built and supplied four Bushmasters to the JGSDF in 2014 at a cost of about AUD3.6 million (USD2.7 million).
At the time a Japanese Ministry of Defense (MoD) official stated that the Bushmasters had been acquired to provide land transportation for Japanese evacuees in the event of an overseas emergency, either natural or man-made.
All eight Bushmasters are the infantry mobility variant, accommodating eight troops, a driver, and a commander in a monocoque hull of all-welded steel armour.
The V-shaped underbody of the hull provides blast protection from a high-explosive mine or improvised explosive device containing 9.5 kg of TNT, detonated under any wheel or under the centre section of the vehicle.
The upper section of the hull provides ballistic protection against 5.56 mm NATO and 7.62 mm NATO ball ammunition at 30 m, and 81 mm mortar fragments at 5 m.
About 1,052 Bushmasters have been delivered to the Australian Army, with other sales made to the Netherlands (106), the United Kingdom (30), New Zealand (5), Jamaica (12), Indonesia (4), Fiji (10), and Japan (8).
The latest delivery to the JGSDF, made in mid-May, was indicated in Tokyo in January 2018 during meetings between Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his visiting Australian counterpart Malcolm Turnbull in which an agreement was reached on “deeper and broader” defence co-operation.
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