DRB-HICOM Defence Technologies Sdn Bhd (Deftech) has unveiled two variants of AV8 Gempita armoured-wheeled-vehicle for the Malaysian Army. The Gempita Surveillance (SURV) and Gempita Remote Control Weapon Station (RCWS) are part of the 12 variants of the 259 Gempitas that Deftech is developing under a contract awarded in 2011.
Deftech group chief executive officer Lt Kol Datuk Amril Samsudin said the SURV would be employed by both the army’s Armoured Regiment and Mechanised Infantry Unit. Out of the 255 Gempita AV8 vehicles ordered, 122 are already in service with the Malaysian army and make up three regiments. The project will be completed by 2020.
The weapon system will provide both units with an organic surveillance capability to detect any aggressor tank or armoured formations. They included the Infantry Fighting Vehicle (IFV) 25mm, Armoured Fighting Vehicle 30mm, Armoured Command Vehicle, Armoured Vehicle Signal, ATGW (AntiTank Guided Weapon) and RCWS which is also amphibious. Out of the 54 ATGW variants that have been ordered, approximately 20 have already been delivered. According to Deftech officials, the performance of the AV8 has been very good and missile firing trials in South Africa and Malaysia have also been successful.
The SURV comes with a telescopic radar mast and is one of the most significant vehicles for the Gempita family. It will provide battlefield commanders better situational awareness on the enemy’s disposition and the position of friendly forces, while the RCWS is equipped with 12.7mm gun to be used mainly in the Mechanised Infantry. Some vehicles have also been sent to take part in trials for a Saudi requirement. Turkish company FNSS is providing deep production and design knowhow for the AV8.