The VBL, which was designed in the early 1980s and has seen service in all the overseas operations of the French armed forces, is to have its drive unit upgraded.
In focusing on mobility aspects, DGA has awarded RENAULT TRUCKS Defense/ Panhard an initial feasibility design contract to provide a solution to upgrade the VBL, including its engine, gearbox, suspension and braking.
An initial demonstrator was delivered to the French Army in December 2014 for assessment and this has led on to the extension design contract which has just been awarded. Three other vehicles are due to be delivered at the end of 2015 for trials in the French Armed Forces at the start of 2016.
The Panhard production plant in Marolles-en-Hurepoix (France), as the original manufacturer of the VBL, is responsible for preparing the delivery of pre-production vehicles.
More than 2,300 VBLs have been built, including 1600 for the French Army.
VOLVO GROUP GOVERNMENTAL SALES is in charge of Defense, Security activities and Emergency services within the Volvo Group, with the following brands: RENAULT TRUCKS Defense, ACMAT Defense, PANHARD Defense, VOLVO Defense and MACK Defense. VOLVO GROUP GOVERNMENTAL SALES is a leading player in the field of wheeled military and security vehicles.
RENAULT TRUCKS Defense, one of three participants in the Joint Venture (GME) which was awarded the Scorpion contract by the Minister of Defense on 5 December 2014, is to participate in the development of the French Army's new generation of front-line vehicles Griffon and Jaguar. RENAULT TRUCKS Defense is in particular responsible for supplying the powertrains for these two vehicles, and for providing the whole supply chain for the spare parts and components of the Scorpion program.