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Hyundai Rotem delivers MPUGVs to RoK Army

Hyundai Rotem has delivered two MPUGVs to the Republic of Korea Army to undertake surveillance and reconnaissance missions along the DMZ. (Hyundai Rotem)

Hyundai Rotem has delivered two multipurpose unmanned ground vehicles (MPUGVs) to the Republic of Korea (RoK) Army.

The company said on 10 January that the MPUGVs were handed over to the service following six months of trials that included operations along the Korean Demilitarised Zone (DMZ).

Hyundai Rotem said the surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities of the vehicles was confirmed following tests in various terrains and environments. During the trials, the MPUGVs also drove autonomously on designated routes and performed subordinated driving.

A Hyundai Rotem official said, β€œThe technology and reliability of multipurpose unmanned vehicles has been recognised through successful military pilot operations such as surveillance and reconnaissance missions, close combat, and material movement missions.”

South Korea's Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) selected Hyundai Rotem in November 2020 to develop the MPUGVs under the Korean Army Tiger 4.0 programme. Janes reported at the time that KRW4 billion (USD3.52 million) had been earmarked for the programme. Trials of the vehicles started in July.

Hyundai Rotem has said the MPUGV is based on its battery-operated HR-Sherpa unmanned vehicle. The company has also said the MPUGV operates a day-night camera, with a detection capability of 4 km.

According to Janes Land Warfare Platforms: Logistics, Support & Unmanned, the HR-Sherpa is a 6Γ—6 vehicle possibly based on the Argo amphibious manned all-terrain vehicle (ATV) chassis. In 2019 Hyundai Rotem partnered with South Korean telecoms company KT to develop a 5G-connected version of the vehicle. It is possible that the MPUGV is a development stemming from this variant.

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