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France confirms first Scorpion vehicle orders

09th January 2017 - 10:08 by Beth Maundrill in London

France confirms first Scorpion vehicle orders

The first orders will be placed in 2017 for France’s new Griffon and Jaguar vehicles as the French Army’s Scorpion programme continues to move forward. 

The French procurement agency, the DGA, confirmed to Shephard that 319 Griffon and 20 Jaguar will be ordered albeit a date for the order has not yet been determined. 

The orders will be part of a multitude of equipment requests which will also include 23 heavy special forces vehicles, the first batch of regenerated light armoured vehicles, a new generation of assault rifles and various communications equipment. 

It is expected that 1,700 Griffon vehicles will be delivered to the French Army in total and the Jaguar reconnaissance vehicles will total 248. The 2017 orders will be the first of these. 

Deployment of the first Griffon is expected in 2023 with deliveries scheduled to begin in 2018. Deliveries for Jaguar are expected in 2020. 

A full scale mock-up of the Griffon 6x6 vehicle was showcased at Eurosatory 2016. The vehicle will be equipped with missile detecting sensors, laser designators and automatic Blue Force Tracking. 

At this time it is understood that seven Griffon prototypes will be built with testing beginning in October 2016. Griffon will be made in six different variants: APC, command post, forward artillery observation, ambulance, 120mm mortar and Special Forces variant.

Jaguar will be equipped with a two-man turret with a 40mm gun, MMP missiles from MBDA a 7.62mm remote controlled weapon station and airburst ammunition.

Alongside these the French Army will upgrade 200 Leclerc main battle tanks (MBT), work is being led by Nexter Systems. The Leclerc was first deployed in 1997 – the upgraded MBTs will be delivered by 2025. 

The Griffon and Jaguar are being produced by a temporary business group (TBG) which includes Nexter, Renault Trucks Defence and Thales. 

The new vehicles will be equipped with a new battle management system known as SICS which is integral to the Army upgrade plan to increase networkability. A new radio system provided by Thales, known as CONTACT, will work with the SICS system.  

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