In a strategic move to fortify its military might, the Ministry of Defence of the Government of India has taken a significant step forward by initiating the procurement process for 170 Armoured Recovery Vehicles (ARVs) constructed on a tracked platform. This procurement effort underscores India’s commitment to enhancing its military capabilities, ensuring the swift recovery and repair of armoured vehicles across challenging terrains and adverse weather conditions.
The Request for Information (RFI) marks a pivotal moment in this acquisition process. It serves the vital purpose of finalizing Specific Qualitative Requirements (SQRs), determining the appropriate procurement category, and identifying potential Indian vendors capable of commencing ARV production within two years of the contract award. With a target production rate of a minimum of 50 ARV vehicles annually, India’s dedication to rapidly reinforcing its military infrastructure is unmistakable.
The ARV’s intended applications encompass a wide spectrum of demanding terrains, showcasing its versatility and adaptability. These terrains include:
- Plain, Semi-Desert, and Desert Terrain: These conditions, commonly found along India’s western borders, present unique challenges for military operations. The ARV must excel in navigating and operating effectively in these harsh, arid environments.
- High Altitude and Mountainous Terrain: Along India’s northern borders, including Eastern Ladakh, Central Sector, and North Sikkim, the ARV is expected to perform flawlessly in high-altitude areas, where altitudes can reach up to 5,000 meters. The rugged and challenging mountainous terrain demands specialized equipment capable of overcoming formidable obstacles.
Weather conditions add an additional layer of complexity to ARV operations. It must operate effectively during both day and night, even in the face of adverse weather conditions such as snow, rain, dust, and sand—conditions commonly encountered in the specified terrains.
Key specifications for the ARV include:
- Tracked Chassis: The ARV will be configured on a tracked chassis, providing superior maneuverability and traction. This design makes it suitable for a range of terrains, from deserts to high-altitude regions.
- Weight and Carriage Capacity: The gross vehicle weight is expected to fall within the range of 45 to 50 tons, with a minimum carriage capacity of 2 tons for spares and equipment on the loading platform. This ensures that the ARV can effectively transport essential components for armoured vehicle recovery and repair.
- Engine and Power: The ARV should feature a diesel fuel-based engine or power pack with a turbocharged system, preferably rear-mounted. Low thermal and acoustic signature capabilities are essential to minimize detection in combat scenarios.
- Protection: The ARV must provide robust protection against various threats, including High Explosive Anti-Tank (HEAT), High Explosive (HE), and Fin-Stabilized Armor-Piercing Discarding Sabot (FSAPDS) rounds. Adherence to the specified protection levels outlined in STANAG 4569 standards ensures the ARV’s resilience against these threats.
The Indian Army’s issuance of this RFI for Armoured Recovery Vehicles marks a crucial step toward bolstering the nation’s military capabilities, showcasing India’s commitment to maintaining a strong and adaptable defense force capable of addressing a variety of challenges across diverse terrains and weather conditions.