Australia’s new Hawkei Protected Mobility Vehicles have deployed into a warzone for the first time.
Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon Marise Payne, and Minister for Defence Industry, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP, today announced the Army had successfully deployed two Hawkei vehicles into the Middle East Region, as part of a Defence trial.
Minister Payne said the trial vehicles were sent to Iraq’s Taji Military Complex to test their sustainability overseas and their ability to deploy to and from an operational area.
“This will enable the Army to learn how to best deploy this capability to an operational environment and ensure it is ready prior to full production in 2019,” Minister Payne said.
“Throughout the trial these vehicles will be employed by our soldiers within Task Group Taji Six in Iraq’s Taji Military Complex.”
“The two Hawkei vehicles will complete defined tasks designed to ensure we are best prepared to deploy this capability when it enters service.”
“The Hawkei’s cutting-edge technology and design means it is able to withstand significant blast and ballistic threats, which will protect our soldiers from small arms fire and fragmentation,” Minister Payne said.
Minister Pyne said the Hawkei is a pioneering protected vehicle which is designed, developed and manufactured by Thales Australia.
“The Hawkei showcases the capability, maturity and international competitiveness of Australian defence industry,” Minister Pyne said.
“This vehicle is an innovative piece of equipment which will enhance Defence capability, in particular the safety of our deployed personnel.”
“Defence and Thales Australia have been working closely to develop this vehicle by conducting a rigorous design, test, and evaluation process, and both organisations should be proud of their work.”
“The Hawkei builds on Thales Australia’s international success with the Bushmaster vehicle, which is in service with seven countries.”
“I was proud to travel to Poland in October to support Thales Australia’s bid to export the Hawkei, and today’s milestone shows yet again the world-class capability being produced by Australian defence industry,” he said.
Imagery is available at http://images.defence.gov.au/S20180002