New Zealand’s ministry of defense is looking for new digital and communications systems that can connect its fleet of 43 Bushmaster infantry vehicles.
A request for proposals has been issued to industry partners, requiring interested vendors to submit their preliminary designs as well as production and installation plans.
According to defense ministry official Huntley Wright, the new systems will ensure that Bushmaster crews can work together effectively, anytime and anywhere.
He further stated that the state-of-the-art communications equipment will improve soldiers’ situational awareness, support decision making, and facilitate secure communication between people and their vehicles.
“The systems will help to keep New Zealand Army personnel safe, with the latest technologies providing real-time digital maps, secure radios, and instant messaging,” he explained.
Apart from the new communications system, the winning bidder should be able to provide troop training and other associated support services.
New Zealand’s Bushmaster Fleet
New Zealand has ordered 43 Bushmaster vehicles from Thales Australia to replace its army’s aging armored Pinzgauers.
The first batch of 18 vehicles arrived in May, while the remaining units under order will be handed over to the service later this year.
The Bushmaster was designed primarily for troop transport, given its large carrying capacity of up to five tons.
It is expected to provide New Zealand Army personnel with increased levels of protection against explosive devices and small-arms fire.
The vehicles come in five variants, including protected ambulances and mobile command hubs.
With the delivery of all 43 Bushmasters imminent, Wellington’s defense ministry is hoping the new communications system will be ready and operational by 2026.