EDGE entity NIMR, a leading manufacturer of light and medium military vehicles, and John Cockerill Defense announced the signing of a Teaming Agreement to jointly explore opportunities for the development and marketing of the innovative Cockerill i-X (“i” for “interceptor” and “X” for “modular multi-weapons system) ground interceptor. It’s the first ever ground interceptor and is a breakthrough combat system for territorial defense interception: engage and defeat incoming threats before they reach their objective. The agreement was signed by His Excellency Staff Major General Pilot Faris Khalaf Al Mazrouei, Chairman of the NIMR Board and Thierry Renaudin, CEO of John Cockerill Defense, in the presence of Abri du Plessis, CEO of NIMR, and several other dignitaries, during a ceremony held at IDEX.
Following the successful launch of the Cockerill i-X in 2022, John Cockerill Defense has completed a series of mobility and live fire trails with the prototype vehicle that is present on the John Cockerill Defense stand, Hall 12, Stand B14, at the International Defence Exhibition and Conference (IDEX 2023). During the tests, the Cockerill i-X achieved impressive results in terms of speed of movement on off-road surfaces, stability of the vehicle during firing, firing accuracy, and firepower. Owing to its very encouraging results, the Cockerill i-X has generated a strong international demand. The agreement between John Cockerill Defense and NIMR will enable the two parties to establish a joint proposal to respond to this demand in the best possible way.
Abri du Plessis, CEO of NIMR, said: “We are delighted to enter this Teaming Agreement with John Cockerill which lays the foundation for collectively strengthening our capabilities and meeting the demand for the Cockerill i-X in key target markets. The Cockerill i-X has performed exceptionally well in a series of trials and tests, demonstrating high speeds on and off-road and technologically-advanced weapon systems. Fostering strategic partnerships is a core priority for EDGE and NIMR, and negotiations will continue to iron out a potential joint venture arrangement in due course.”
Thierry Renaudin, CEO of John Cockerill Defense, said: “We at John Cockerill are enthusiastic to begin working with NIMR. They have shown themselves to be fully committed to the development and production of combat-proven military vehicles. Our joint knowledge and experience will enable us to make the Cockerill i-X the weapon system of the future that will best meet the needs of international armed forces. I look forward to our two companies working together on this exciting project.”
The vehicle is capable of moving at very high speeds on-road and off-road (with a thermal or hybrid thermal-electric drive train), light, stealthy (appearance management with adaptive camouflage, and modification of IR and acoustic signature), integrating multi sensor data fusion technology (Smart Helmet, on-board intelligence AI, cameras, sensors : LWS, Acoustic Gunshot detection and localization) and capable of integrating a suite of effective weapons (such as 25mm, 30mm, missiles and rockets) depending on the threat to be neutralized, as well as to foresee the integration of a new generation of effectors. The vehicle will be quickly transportable by Air (plane, helicopter, droppable by parachute), Sea and Land (train, truck).
Under the terms of the Teaming Agreement, John Cockerill Defense and NIMR will collaborate exclusively on the next phase, defining a common approach to bring the Cockerill i-X to the market, with John Cockerill Defense’s experience in lethality solutions and NIMR’s experience in mobility solutions being combined to accelerate the process. The Cockerill i-X Interceptor vehicle is a fusion of NIMR technical excellence of weapon systems and extensive experience in the field of rally raid. This highly mobile vehicle, combined with the proven firepower of the 25mm as well as advanced artificial intelligence, is an innovative break with traditional concepts and pushes the defense operations limits to new horizon.