South African defence company Paramount Group revealed on 17 September that it had received certification from South Africa's Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) for blast protection on its Mbombe 4 armoured personnel carrier.
Following a testing campaign carried out between March and June, the vehicle was certified to have exceeded the criteria for NATO STANAG 4569 M4a and M4B. Testing included the detonation of three 10 kg TNT charges under the wheels and hull and one 50 kg side blast test to replicate an improvised explosive device (IED) strike.
Post-testing evaluation of the vehicle involved inspection for potential secondary fragment injuries, loosened equipment, and hull ruptures, with the vehicle passing these further tests.
The company further revealed that the vehicle has "successfully completed a series of summer trials with several armed forces". Paramount Group was awarded a contract at the IDEX 2019 trade show by the UAE for four vehicles, which were expected to be used for testing and evaluation purposes before any further procurement by the country.
The Mbombe 4 is powered by a turbo diesel 6-cylinder engine and has a burst speed of 140 km/h. Weighing 16 tonnes, the vehicle has a payload of 2.7 tonnes, which encapsulates weapons systems, ammunition, crew, and supplies. Notably, rear access to the vehicle is provided by a ramp instead of side-hinged access doors that are common in 4×4 mine-resistant, ambush-protected (MRAP) vehicles.
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