Ground Warfare

VRA Awarded Australian Army Contract to Supply Spike LR2 Missiles for Boxer CRVs

SPIKE LR2 Anti-Tank Guided Missile (ATGM)
SPIKE LR2 Anti-Tank Guided Missile (ATGM)

The Australian Army’s Boxer combat reconnaissance vehicles (CRV) will soon be armed with the cutting-edge Rafael Spike LR2 anti-tank guided missiles. This strategic move will empower soldiers to effectively engage with adversaries from distances exceeding five kilometers, marking a substantial leap in the Australian Army’s operational capabilities. The Boxer combat reconnaissance vehicle, known for its versatility and adaptability, is part of a multirole armored fighting vehicle family designed to accommodate various mission modules. Manufactured by the ARTEC GmbH, an industrial consortium consisting of Krauss-Maffei Wegmann GmbH, Rheinmetall Military Vehicles GmbH, and Rheinmetall Defence Nederland B.V., the Boxer vehicle has been at the forefront of modern military technology. Notably, Rheinmetall Defense Australia (RDA) was selected in March 2018 as the preferred tenderer for Australia’s Land 400 Phase 2 project, with initial vehicles slated for deployment by 2021 and full deliveries scheduled by 2026.

Varley Rafael Australia (VRA), a joint venture between The Varley Group and Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, has been awarded a contract worth USD 50 million to provide the first batch of Spike LR2 missiles. Expected to be delivered early next year, this contract also includes provisions for domestic manufacturing options. As part of the agreement, VRA will deliver SPIKE LR2 Mechanical and Outdoor Training rounds, along with user training support. Furthermore, VRA is collaborating with the Commonwealth to facilitate the Technical Certification of the SPIKE LR2 missile, a crucial step towards its integration into the Australian Defence Force’s arsenal. Varley Rafael Australia (VRA) and Thales Australia also have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) and commenced collaboration to explore future Australian production of the RAFAEL SPIKE family of guided weapon directly enabling the accelerated delivery of a Sovereign Guided Weapons manufacturing and sustainment capability in support of the Guided Weapons and Explosive Ordnance (GWEO) Enterprise.

Spike LR2 missile is compatible with different types of launch platforms.
Spike LR2 anti-tank guided missile is compatible with different types of launch platforms. (Photo by VRA)

The SPIKE LR2 missile, developed by Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, is a fifth-generation precision-guided weapon system that boasts an impressive fire-and-forget capability. It incorporates a tandem-charge HEAT warhead and is currently in its fourth generation. Having already been adopted by eleven other nations, the selection of the SPIKE LR2 missile by the Australian Defence Force (ADF) will be accompanied by an extensive Transfer of Technology (ToT) program. This program will not only elevate Australia’s guided missile production capabilities but will also establish comprehensive in-service support for the ADF. Leveraging Rafael’s proven processes and expertise, VRA’s ToT initiative aims to cultivate a sovereign guided weapons manufacturing capability, generate high-tech local content jobs, and enhance the skillset of the Australian workforce. With the integration of the Spike LR2 anti-tank guided missiles, the Australian Army is poised to achieve new heights in combat readiness and effectiveness. This enhancement underlines Australia’s commitment to staying at the forefront of defense technology and maintaining a robust national security posture.

Varley Rafael Australia (VRA) is a joint venture between The Varley Group and RAFAEL Advanced Defense Systems that combines Australia’s oldest Defence enterprise with a world leader in Defence technology. In addition to the SPIKE LR2, VRA will deliver a range of Rafael products for the Australian market including the TROPHY Active Protection System (APS) for armoured vehicles; the TAMIR Counter-Rocket, Artillery & Missile (CRAM) interceptor for short-range Ground Based Air Defence (GBAD); and the TORBUSTER Torpedo Counter-Measure (TCM) for submarines. VRA represents a unique opportunity for Australia to drive the development of sovereign capabilities, investment in innovation and jobs, and export opportunities for Australian industry. VRA will deliver cutting edge Australian produced and supported capabilities such as the SPIKE LR2 Anti-Tank Guided Missile (ATGM).

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