Type Caracal as an all-round talent: What can the new Bundeswehr airborne vehicle do?

Type Caracal as an all-round talent
What can the Bundeswehr’s new airborne vehicle do?

The Bundeswehr gets new military equipment: the Caracal airborne vehicle. Rheinmetall is expected to deliver more than 2,000 of these in the next few years. According to the manufacturer, the vehicle is equipped with a “wide range of capabilities”.

The Bundeswehr is to add a new vehicle to its ranks from 2025. Together with the Dutch, the German armed forces have signed a contract with the armaments group Rheinmetall, which is to deliver a total of 3,058 Caracal vehicles with an order value of up to 1.9 million euros. 1,004 vehicles are to go to the Netherlands, and 2,054 will go to the Bundeswehr.

Manufacturer Rheinmetall praises the vehicle as “the answer to the upcoming requirements for airborne vehicles in Germany and various armies worldwide”. Accordingly, the unique modular design allows the Caracal to be used in various roles in airborne operations. According to Rheinmetall, the Caracal offers a “wide range of capabilities, from simple troop transport and medical operations to combat engineer groups and various logistical applications”.

The design of the Caracal is inspired by the new Mercedes-Benz G-Class and is based on a militarized chassis, a cooperation between the car manufacturer and the specialist supplier ACS Armored Car Systems. The vehicle is characterized by “highest mobility, a light structure and optionally mountable protection elements against ballistic and mine threats,” said the armaments group.

With all-wheel drive and a six-cylinder diesel engine, the 4.9-ton military vehicle has 249 hp and a top speed of 140 kilometers per hour. The all-terrain vehicle can also be equipped with various weapons, such as a heavy machine gun and the SPIKE anti-tank system, according to a report in the “Bild” newspaper.

The vehicle was “tailored to the requirements of platforms for airborne or special operations units,” explained Rheinmetall. Up to two Caracals can be quickly flown to the operational area with the CH-53K King Stallion or CH-47F Chinook transport helicopters. The Bundeswehr is to receive 60 new units of the Chinook type. On the German side, the procurement is carried out using funds from the special fund for the Bundeswehr.

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