Support and mobile repair vehicles in the Czech Army. Which chassis will be selected by the national army?
The original propositions or, by other words, the contractual documentation for new IFVs specified that the army was going to purchase 29 mobile repair vehicles based on the Tatra chassis. But later the Ministry of Defence sent the competitors new propositions, where just “29 mobile repair vehicles” was specified without mentioning the chassis. Is it a good idea to speculate over a supplier of the chassis with regard to the next modernization projects and possibilities of the Czech armament industry?
There is no need to argue about engagement of Tatra vehicles and chassis in the Czech Army. Well-proven, and what’s more, domestic platforms. The entire manufacture is realized in the Czech Republic, and it guarantees easy service and involvement of Czech companies in case of crisis or, God forbid, military manufacture. At that time everybody can rely only on what he’s got, as it were, on own plot, or, to put it another way, in the Czech Republic. The Czech proverb “What's at home, counts” would go well here. But…
Within the upcoming tender that has to determine which infantry fighting vehicles would plough both Libava, Doupov territories and training areas all over Europe (most frequently Poland, remark), the Army of the Czech Republic must also rely on other support, service and mobile repair vehicle vehicles. The wording of the initial tender was clear. The chassis of Tatra. However, as was specified in the introduction, it isn’t obvious now, since the submitter, i.e. the Army, has omitted this presumable specification of the manufacturer. It could appear to be just logomachy and you can say that the tender would be anyway interconnected with the domestic military industry, but it is not a matter of fact, although it logically makes sense.
The Tatra trucks or Tatra chassis have been accompanying the Army from time out of mind. Absolute reliability, passability and quality leave no doubt. Unfortunately, what is logical for some people doesn’t need to be so for others. And there’s nothing to do but hope that, for example, the integrator of the order for the new IFVs, the VOP CZ state enterprise, will be committed to the domestic products. After all, regular deliveries to the army speak clear in favour of the domestic manufacturer.
Substitution for AV-15
At the same time, a number of the current equipment of the Czech Army based on the Tatra chassis is being replaced by new equipment, or will have to be replaced by new one. The same situation is with Tatra 815 AV-15. This recovery vehicle, in spite of its splendid off-road properties, is unequivocally out-of-date. There is, of cause, a possible substitution on the market in a form of Treva-15 model of Excalibur Army (Holding CSG), which is a recovery vehicle derived from the above-mentioned, well-proved AV-15 model.
The vehicle is based on the TATRA FORCE T 815-7 8x8 chassis with a prolonged four-door cabin suitable for the transportation of a crew from the evacuated vehicle. The superstructure of the vehicle is largely based on the well-proved AV-15 and preserves simplicity of service and operational resistivity. In addition, the new vehicle has a higher service capacity for the transfer of semi-hanged automotive machines, armoured personnel carriers and other vehicles with a weight up to 30 tons, i.e. almost doubled values compared to the ancestor.
The Army of the Czech Republic in the last year received five unique mobile repair vehicles, Tatra T815-7-D 8×8, which were delivered in two modifications depending on the level of maintenance and repairs to be performed.
Three of the mobile repair vehicles (T815-7-D 8×8 V) are designed for 1st level technical maintenance and current repairs of the Pandur series wheeled armoured personnel carriers (repair squad or platoon) and two vehicles (T815-7-D 8×8) for the 2nd level (repair battalion) in different climatic conditions and landscape types. Naturally, in this case equipment of Tatra is also predominantly applied.