The LAV 6.0 is the designation given by the Canadian Army to its enhanced LAV III Kodiak armored personnel carrier platform, upgraded specifically to respond to requirements emerging from a decade of in-theatre experience fighting in Afghanistan. The upgraded LAV 6.0 weights significantly more than the original LAV III. A fully upgraded vehicle with add-on armor kit weights just over 28 t. Protection has been improved, though many of the core design elements remain the same.
The most notable difference of the upgraded LAV 6.0 is a double V-shaped hull. It was added for improved protection against landmines and improvised explosive devices. Crew members and passengers are seated on energy absorbing seats. Vehicle retains a ceramic add-on armor kit of the original LAV III. It looks like with this kit maximum level of all-round protection is against 14.5 mm armor-piercing rounds. Some sources claim, that front arc can withstand hits from 30 mm cannons. Cage armor can be installed for protection against anti-tank rockets. Vehicle is fitted with automatic fire suppression and NBC protection systems. Currently the LAV 6.0 is one of the most protected armored personnel carrier in the world.
The upgraded Canadian vehicles have improved fire control system. It has an integrated target detection, recognition and identification system. It automatically corrects for target range and crossing speed. Turret sights have also been upgraded. The new thermal sight and intensification sight have extended ranges. So overall surveillance capability of the vehicle improved. The gunner can spot a man at a range of 1.2 km. Furthermore the LAV 6.0 has got a new battlefield management system.
This armored vehicle is operated by a crew of 3, including commander, gunner and driver. It accommodates 6-7 dismounts. Troops enter and leave the vehicle through the rear ramp with integral doors. Also there are roof hatches for firing or emergency exit/ The upgraded LAV 6.0 is fitted with a more powerful engine. The new Caterpillar engine develops 450 hp, opposed to 350 hp in the original LAV III. Upgrades were made to drivetrain and suspension to coupe with increased engine power, as well as increased overall weight. Despite increased weight the upgraded LAV 6.0 can match mobility of the original LAV III Kodiak. The LAV 6.0 is not amphibious.
In 2016 General Dynamics Land Systems-Canada furthered the LAV 6.0 family’s modularity by introducing the LAV 6.0 Combat Support Vehicle (LAV 6.0 CSV). The LAV 6.0 CSV combines additional mission flexibility with the commonality and protection of the LAV 6.0 baseline. Equipped with remote weapon systems for self-defence, the LAV 6.0 CSV variants, available so far, include Command Post, and Ambulance and Maintenance and Recovery Vehicle. The LAV 6.0 saw its first operational deployment internationally in 2017 when it accompanied Canadian Soldiers deployed in Latvia in support of Operation REASSURANCE.