New Bushmaster vehicles welcomed at Trentham
Minister of Defence Andrew Little today welcomed the first 18 of 43 new NZ Army Bushmaster vehicles, at an event at Trentham Military Camp.
The fleet of Australian-designed and built vehicles will replace the NZ Army's ageing armoured Pinzgauers. The fleet represents a significant uplift in capability and protection for Army personnel.
Deputy Secretary Capability Delivery Sarah Minson says the new Bushmaster vehicles come in five different variants and will allow New Zealand Army to carry more troops, as well as offer greater blast and ballistic protection.
"The project team made up of both Ministry of Defence staff and NZDF personnel worked with the Australian company Thales to design a vehicle specifically for NZ Army's use and the unique environments they operate in."
The Bushmaster vehicles are designed primarily as a troop transport vehicle and have a larger carrying capacity. They will provide personnel with greater levels of protection against Improvised Explosive Devices and small arms fire, when on peace and security operations. The vehicles will also be used in New Zealand for disaster response missions and search and rescue operations.
The remainder of the Bushmaster vehicles will arrive in batches throughout 2023. They will undergo testing and certification for NZ Army use at Trentham Military Camp, before they are sent to their home bases in Linton and Burnham Military Camps.
The vehicles are more than seven metres long and 2.5 metres high.
Bushmaster vehicle statistics:
Name: Bushmaster NZ5.5
Arrival date: 2023
Manufacturer: Thales Australia, Victoria
Fleet number: 43
Weight: 11 tonnes, with a 5 tonne payload
Height: 2,650 mm
Length: 7,180 mm
Width: 2.480 mm
Fuel capacity: 319 litres
Max speed: 100 km/h
Passengers: 10 personnel
Expected operational life: 30 years