LAV III Light Armoured Vehicle
Responding to a growing customer need for greater payload and protection levels the LAV III was designed. Since being introduced, the LAV III fleet has been sold to various customers in a wide range of variants. To date over 4,200 vehicles have been ordered, with the majority being Strykers for the United States Army. The vehicle has been deployed by customers to operations in the Balkans, Africa, Haiti, and is currently the vehicle of choice among soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq.
The Armoured Personnel Carrier (APC) is essential for all foreseeable Canadian Forces roles, including territorial defence, UN peacekeeping and peace enforcement operations, other international commitments, and Aid of the Civil Power. The existing APC fleet does not meet the minimum operational requirements when compared to the modern, technically sophisticated weapons and vehicles Canadian soldiers encounter during operations. They suffer shortcomings in protection, self-defence capability, mobility, carrying capacity and growth potential. The APC Project is fielding a fleet of modern, wheeled, armoured personnel carriers. 651 Light Armoured Vehicles (LAV) III are to be procured in six configurations: Infantry Section Carrier, Command Post, Engineer, Forward Observation Officer, and TOW (Tube Launched, Optically Tracked, Wire Guided) Under Armour, and LAV III Less Kits.
This fast, well-armed LAV III is a state-of-the-art troop carrier that will serve the needs of mounted infantry well into the new century. The vehicle is well protected and can be used day and night, in all weather conditions, in battlefield smoke and on most types of terrain. Capable of speeds of up to 100 kilometres per hour on roads, the LAV III will give the commander many more options in both combat and non-combat situations. For example the commander may choose to keep the troops mounted and protected while using the 25-mm stabilized cannon - an option not available in the past.
The driver and the commander have display terminals for the Tactical Navigation System (TACNAV), as well as thermal viewers. The TACNAV links a Global Positioning System (GPS) with a digital magnetic compass and laser range finder. Good anti-mine performance and an automatic fire and explosion suppression system provide additional safety for the crew. When used as an infantry section carrier, the LAV III deploys with a vehicle commander, a gunner, a driver and seven infantry soldiers. When deployed as a Tactical Command Post, it carries six soldiers. Three other variants are being procured including a Forward Observation Officer (FOO), TOW Under Armour (TUA) and an Engineer variant.
The Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence, with Lieutenant-General Andrew Leslie, Chief of the Land Staff, announced July 8, 2009 that the Government of Canada has approved an upgrade program for the LAV III family of vehicles. General Dynamics Land Systems- Canada will be the prime contractor and systems integrator for this program. General Dynamics will now work closely with the Department of National Defence in defining the scope of the LAV III upgrades. At the heart of the upgrade program is a high-capacity driveline and suspension that significantly increases the vehicle's payload. Increased payload will allow the vehicle the ability to deliver even better protection for Canadian soldiers. Other features of the upgrade package will be determined through discussions with the Department of National Defence.
The Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence, and the Honourable Rona Ambrose, Minister of Public Works and Government Services, announced July 9, 2010 that the Government of Canada had awarded a $34.4 million contract to General Dynamics Land Systems-Canada. Under this contract, General Dynamics will perform trade-off studies, design work, prototype build and testing to define the upgrades that will be incorporated into Canada's fleet of LAV III vehicles. The resultant upgrade package will enhance LAV III performance in the areas of survivability, mobility and firepower.
"With this contract, we are now able to evolve the LAV III to an even higher standard of performance," said Dr. Sridhar Sridharan, senior vice-president of General Dynamics Land Systems-Canada. "The end product will be a much more capable and better protected vehicle ready to take on the threats and challenges of current and future battlefields." Once the Government of Canada has authorized the implementation of the upgrade package, significant work will be performed at General Dynamics Land Systems-Canada facilities in London, Ontario, and Edmonton, Alberta, as well as the company's nationwide network of over 400 Canadian suppliers. All regions of Canada will benefit from this work.
General Dynamics Land Systems - Canada, located in London, Ontario, Canada, is a business unit of General Dynamics Land Systems of Sterling Heights, Michigan. For over 30 years, more than 2000 highly skilled technical employees have designed, manufactured, delivered and supported to global customers a unique family of light armoured vehicles (LAV).
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