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Rheinmetall plans hybrid version of Mission Master UGV

Rheinmetall plans to introduce a hybrid version of its Mission Master unmanned ground vehicle (UGV), said Alain Tremblay, vice-president, business development and innovation at Rheinmetall Canada, during an online presentation of the new Mission Master XT (extreme terrain) diesel-powered UGV on 17 June. He added that the development of the hybrid UGV had begun 14 months ago.

Rheinmetall unveiled its Mission Master XT diesel-powered autonomous UGV on 17 June. (Rheinmetall)

Rheinmetall unveiled its Mission Master XT diesel-powered autonomous UGV on 17 June. (Rheinmetall)

The 4×4 Mission Master XT has larger wheels than the electric Mission Master SP (silent partner) 8×8 UGV, and “thrives in extreme terrain”, Rheinmetall said in an 18 June press release. “It easily tackles ice, snow, and sub-zero weather conditions, as well as sandy, rocky, and mountainous topography. Its advanced amphibious capabilities allow it to float and swim while maintaining its full payload capacity.”

Tremblay said the UGV can be operated in swamps, and used in littoral operations, with an option for installing an outboard motor to cover long distances. The UGV has a 2.7 tonne combat weight while retaining its full capabilities, he added. The Mission Master XT weighs 2,217 kg, and can carry a 1,000 kg payload, according to Rheinmetall.

Its diesel engine allows it to travel 750 km without refuelling, which Tremblay said can be extended by reducing the payload. Asked by Janes how this compared with the electric version, he noted that the latter can run for 140–180 km on a fully charged battery. Although the Mission Master XT has a higher signature than the electric version, it is easier to maintain, he said. Moreover, the diesel-engined UGV's lithium-ion batteries allow it to operate for six hours in silent mode.

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