Ground Warfare

French Army’s Exercise Showcases Capabilities of EBRC Jaguar Reconnaissance Vehicles

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French Army’s Exercise Showcases Capabilities of EBRC Jaguar Reconnaissance Vehicles

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French Army’s Exercise Showcases Capabilities of EBRC Jaguar Reconnaissance Vehicles
French Army’s Exercise Showcases Capabilities of EBRC Jaguar Reconnaissance Vehicles

The recent BIA 2023 exercise conducted by the French Army has marked a significant milestone in military training and showcased the advanced features of the EBRC Jaguar, a formidable armored reconnaissance and combat vehicle slated to replace several existing vehicles within the French Army. From November 26 to December 3, 2023, the exercise witnessed the deployment of 13 EBRC Jaguar reconnaissance vehicles, each a testament to modern warfare’s evolving landscape. The rigorous drills involved firing over 1,700 rounds of 40mm ammunition, validating the vehicle’s firing accuracy, ergonomics, and mobility across various scenarios involving both fixed and moving targets. Located in the expansive terrain of the Champagne region, the exercise amalgamated the expertise of the 6th Light Armoured Brigade, equipped with Scorpion vehicles, and the 3rd RAMA (Marine Artillery Regiment).

The EBRC Jaguar, designed by a consortium comprising Nexter, Thales, and Renault Trucks Defense, stands as a testament to innovation and robust engineering. Originally intended to maintain a price per unit under €1 million, the vehicle’s sophistication and enhanced capabilities led to a unit price of approximately €5 million (FY2022). This armored vehicle boasts an array of features aimed at ensuring the safety and effectiveness of its crew. Its overpressure system maintains a secure environment within the troop compartment, offering protection against chemical, biological, and radiological threats. Moreover, its STANAG 4569 Level 4 armor protects against various threats, including artillery shell splinters, armor-piercing rounds, and mine blasts. Electronic defenses, including active jamming devices to counter improvised explosive devices (IEDs), missile warning alert systems, and gunfire locators, augment the vehicle’s survivability on the battlefield.

Carried out with the Belgian Army, this exercise deploys for the first time a digitized brigade Scorpion .
Carried out with the Belgian Army, this exercise deploys for the first time a digitized brigade EBRC Jaguar. (Photo by Armée de Terre)

The EBRC Jaguar’s firepower is highlighted by the CTA International CT40 cannon, capable of firing 40mm case telescoped ammunition with a rate of fire of 200 rounds per minute, boasting a maximum effective range of 1,500 meters. Equipped with two Akeron MP anti-tank guided missiles, a 7.62mm remote controlled machine gun mounted on top of the turret and fourteen smoke grenades. The EBRC Jaguar’s versatility and offensive capabilities are comprehensive, even extending to engaging some aerial targets with its elevated cannon capability of up to 45°. The Akeron MP (Akeron Moyenne Portée) is a French fifth generation, network-enabled, anti-tank guided missile system. Featuring both fire-and-forget and command guidance operating modes, it also integrates third party target designation for indirect firing scenarios through its lock-on after launch capability for non-line-of-sight (NLOS) use.

According to the French Army’s 2020 Defence White Paper it plans to retire its AMX 10 RC and ERC 90 Sagaie vehicles beginning in 2020. On 6 December 2014, French Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian announced that deliveries will commence in 2020 and a first tranche of 20 Jaguars and 319 Griffons was ordered in April 2017. A second tranche for 271 Griffons and 42 Jaguars was ordered on 24 September 2020. In total the French Army plans to buy 1,872 Griffons and 300 Jaguars. On 26 October 2018, Belgium’s cabinet formalised the plan to purchase 60 “Jaguar” and 382 “Griffon” vehicles for €1.5 billion. The vehicles will replace the Belgian Army’s Piranha IIIC armoured personnel carriers and Dingo 2 infantry mobility vehicles. The deal includes spare parts and secure communications equipment and deliveries are planned to commence in 2025. Final assembly, including the conversion to the various specific variants and testing of the vehicles, will happen at a local contractor in Belgium.

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