Can’t help feeling a bit above myself whenever I learn about private manufacturers doing good in our immoderately centralized defense hardware sector. For many years, Tata has been producing bolstered versions of some of its civilian vehicles for the armed forces.
The company also exports its defense solutions to SAARC, ASEAN and African regions, as well as the UN. This year at the DEFEXPO they had a couple of real wicked-looking wheels on display.
One was the 8×8 Kestrel and the other 4×4 LAMV (Light Armored Mobility Vehicle).
The Kestrel is a wheeled armoured amphibious platform pretty much like the GM’s famous amphib DUKW (colloq. Duck) of II WW and later. Of course, the Kestrel is contemporary and consequently more advanced and more capable.
The 4×4 LAMV has been indigenously developed with technical inputs from Supacat of UK. It provides protection against small arm fire while the crew is on recce or patrol detail. This vehicle combines blast and ballistic protection with the help of a V-shaped underbelly and detachable ceramic and composite armor crew pod.
The LAMV can carry a combat-ready crew of 6 on its mine-blast protected seats. The vehicle, naturally, is an all-terrain, high-mobility platform with automatic transmission and all-wheel independent suspension. Top speed attainable is 105 Kmph.
With the aid of modern equipment for observation, surveillance and communication, Tata’s LAMV can perform in urban combat operations as well. And No, they won’t sell it to us civilians.