|IVEMA (Pty) Ltd
|Mine protected carrier
The Gila Mine and Ballistic Protected Vehicle (MBPV) was designed and developed in late 2005 as a private venture by the South African IVEMA (International Vehicle & Equipment Marketing) company to meet future battlefield requirements for a high mobility platform with a high level of protection against not only anti-tank mines but also small arms fire.
At a superficial level the Gila (4 x 4) MBPV appears similar to the now BAE Systems Land Systems OMC Casspir range of Mine Protected Vehicle (MPV) developed over 30 years ago.
The Gila MBPV is however a more modern design that incorporates proven modern main components providing a number of advanced features.
The Gila MBPV incorporates a number of proven modern automotive sub-systems that are available from commercial sources with proven reliability and maintainability.
In May 2006, the first pre-production Gila MBPV was privately revealed to the South African Government prior to participation in various qualification tests and trials.
The second pre-production prototype was completed in mid-2006 and formed part of the Ngwane Defence Group's display at the Africa Aerospace and Defence Exhibition held in Cape Town, South Africa.
IVEMA signed its first contract in April 2007 for an undisclosed customer, believed to be Nigeria. Production took place in Midrand, near Johannesburg, South Africa with final delivery including spares and training completed by November 2007.
IVEMA has been awarded a contract under an Urgent Operational Requirement (UOR) for battlefield ambulances for deployment with a multinational peace support operation.
The all welded steel armour monocoque hull is of the traditional V-shape which provides protection against anti-tank mine blast that exceeds the NATO STANAG Level 4b requirement.
According to IVEMA, the Gila can provide protection against a triple TM-57 (equivalent to 21 kg TNT) under any wheel and a double TM-57 (equivalent to 14 kg TNT) anywhere under the hull of the vehicle.
The axles and suspension are mounted externally to enable rapid field repair and replacement following a mine blast. This design ensures a low " post mine blast cost " and allows utilisation of the vehicle within a short amount of time.
Field trials in South America and Asia using a prepared axle and a recovery team have proven that a mine blast equivalent of 18.5 kg of TNT the Gila is able to continue with high mobility trials 60 minutes after the detonation.
Baseline ballistic protection level of the standard Gila is equal to NATO STANAG Level 1 (7.62 x 51 mm/5.56 mm x 45 mm ball) small arms fire.
The Gila's available payload easily accommodates increasing the ballistic protection to Level 3 (7.62 x 51 mm armour piercing) using add on armour kits without impacting of the high mobility of the vehicle.
Layout of the Gila MPV is conventional with the MTU Euro III compliant turbocharged and intercooled diesel powerpack at the front and the crew and troop compartment to the immediate rear.
The APC variant of the Gila has a crew of two consists of commander and driver with the nine troops seated on individual seats down either side of the hull. This configuration can be increased to ten troops if required.
The driver and commander have wide observation through ballistic protected windows to their front and sides plus individual roof hatches above their positions that open left and right.
The Gila APC variant has five ballistic protected observation windows along each side and a ballistic protected observation window in each rear door. Four firing ports are provided along each side and there is also a firing port in each of the rear doors.
The troops can rapidly enter and leave the vehicle via two outward opening doors in the hull rear.
Gila APC variant is equipped with a light electrically driven turret that can accommodate a .50 (12.7 mm) M2 HB MG and a rear 7.62 mm MG weapon mount. Four hatches are provided above the crew area and these are situated between the light turret and rear weapon mount.
Design of the Gila allows the customer to change from left hand drive to right hand drive in a workshop prior to deployment. Every Gila is prepared to accommodate the fitment of the opposite steering box and to allow moving the driving console to the opposite driving position.
Powerpack consists of an MTU Daimler Chrysler EURO III 4-cylinder turbocharged intercooled diesel developing 215 hp that is coupled to an Allison automatic transmission with lock up and a ZF two speed transfer case.
Gila is fitted with two Axle Tech axles each rated at 7.5 tonnes with suspension consisting of leaf springs and double acting hydraulic shock absorbers.
Standard equipment for the Gila vehicles includes an air conditioning system, powered steering, central tyre inflation system (CTIS), Run Flat Inserts (RFI) in all tyres, full pneumatic dual disc brakes front and rear, anti-lock braking system (ABS), interface for spare wheel with winch, tow bar and four D-shackle eyes on the roof and eight D-shackle eyes under the hull.
Gila also has four antenna brackets (two on each side of the roof) and two automatic tuning box mountings at the rear.
The 24 V electrical system of the Gila is to full military specifications and consists of two sets (24 V each) of batteries in parallel which allow one set to support the power pack and the other set to provide power for auxiliary equipment.
IVEMA Launches First New Generation APC (01.06.2006)