Rheinmetall Defence Australia announced last week that it had selected Queensland as its location for its Military Vehicle Centre of Excellence (MILVEHCOE) and the Australian Headquarters that will be established if the company is successful in securing Australia’s Land 400 combat reconnaissance vehicle program.
Currently the largest supplier of military vehicles to the Australian Defence Force, Rheinmetall will establish the MILVEHCOE as a sovereign industrial capability for the continuous design, manufacture, export and support for military vehicles, turrets and tactical systems. The MILVEHCOE will also draw on a supply network across Australia to deliver products and services from local industry into Rheinmetall’s Global Supply Chain.
Rheinmetall is delivering more than 2500 logistics trucks to the Australian Army under the Land 121 Phase 3B program and is currently bidding for the supply of the armoured combat reconnaissance vehicle under the Commonwealth of Australia’s Land 400 Phase 2 program.
As a centre of excellence, the MILVEHCOE will be the focal point for the Land 400 combat vehicles, Land 121 logistics vehicles, and other complex defence projects. Advanced manufacturing jobs will be created in a wide range of technologies including military vehicle design, medium calibre weapons and ammunition, protection systems, fire control and surveillance systems, and systems engineering and integration.
The MILVEHCOE will include significant design, prototyping, manufacturing and system test capabilities; including a mobility test track, medium caliber firing range and an electro-magnetic compatibility test chamber. In partnership with a strong industry network, the MILVEHCOE will provide Australian engineering, manufacturing and support of military technology for Australian and global export programs.
Ben Hudson, Rheinmetall Defence Executive Board Member and Global Head of Vehicle Systems, said “Queensland is an outstanding location to establish the MILVEHCOE. The state offers a range of significant attributes including access to the Australian Army, industry partners, a skilled workforce and an excellent site to build a state of the art facility.”
“The MILVEHCOE will provide a natural hub for Government, Army, industry and academia to collaborate in developing a range of new technologies and products for the Australian and global markets. This will in turn ensure the sustainability of the industry in Australia while also generating high quality local jobs and enriching the Australian economy.” Mr Hudson said.
“Rheinmetall is committed to transferring military vehicle intellectual property, technologies and skills to Australia,” said Rheinmetall Defence Australia’s Chief Operating Office, Mr Gary Stewart.
“It should be emphasised that MILVEHCOE will draw on skills, services, products and capability from every state and territory in Australia.”
Rheinmetall’s plans were shared in private briefings across Australia with more than 400 companies during last year’s industry showcase for the Land 400 Phase 2 program.
An existing network of Queensland-based companies supports many of Rheinmetall’s current projects in Australia and overseas, including Nioa, Penske, Holmwood Highgate, Hilton, Harris Communications, Haulmark, ELBIT and LaserDyne Technologies.
“The performance of these companies gives Rheinmetall the confidence that Queensland industry has the quality and capability to locally design, manufacture and support military vehicles in Brisbane, Townsville and the regional training locations,” Stewart said.