Ground Warfare

Rheinmetall Delivers Additional 20 Marder Infantry Fighting Vehicles

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Rheinmetall Delivers Additional 20 Marder Infantry Fighting Vehicles

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Rheinmetall Delivers Additional 20 Marder Infantry Fighting Vehicles
Rheinmetall Delivers Additional 20 Marder Infantry Fighting Vehicles

The German government comissioned Rheinmetall to deliver 20 additional Marder infantry fighting vehicles (IFVs) to the Ukraine. The order was placed in March 2024 and has a value in the mid double-digit million Euro range. The delivery of this new lot is scheduled within 2024. So far, Rheinmetall has already handed over a three-digit number of Marder IFVs to the Ukrainian Armed Forces via direct deliveries and circular exchange programmes. The version of the 1A3 Marder that has now been ordered also features integrated laser range finders, which enable efficient and precise target elimination. The company had already supplied the first 20 of these combat vehicles to the Ukraine on behalf of the German government in March 2023. A number of further lots have since been delivered, each in two-figure numbers.

Rheinmetall acquired the overhauled 1A3 Marder IFV from the Bundeswehr. The company began overhauling the IFVs for immediate deployment at its own expense back in spring 2022. The corresponding work has since been underway at Rheinmetall’s locations in Unterluess and Kassel. The Marder IFV, which was developed for the Bundeswehr, and is still being operated there, is one of the world’s most proven weapon systems of its kind. Over the course of its service life, the vehicle has been repeatedly modernised and improved in its combat effectiveness. The Bundeswehr now has more than 300 Puma IFVs in operation, representing the latest generation of this type of combat vehicle, and gradually eliminating the Marder IFV in the German Army. In addition, a second lot of over 50 additional Pumas was ordered in 2023.

The Schützenpanzer Marder 1 is a tracked German infantry fighting vehicle designed for use with the West German Panzergrenadiere units, mechanized infantry specialized for IFV combat. It has been operated by the German Army as the main Panzergrenadiere IFV since the 1970s through to the present day. Developed as part of the rebuilding of West Germany’s armoured fighting vehicle industry, the Marder has proven to be a successful and solid infantry fighting vehicle design. While it used to include a few unique features, such as a fully remote machine gun on the rear deck and gun ports on the sides for infantry to fire through, these features have been deleted or streamlined in later upgrade packages to bring it more in line with modern IFV design. The MG has been moved to be a coaxial, the gun ports entirely welded shut and uparmored.

Around 2,100 were taken into service by the West German army in the early 1970s, but the vehicle in its German variant was not sold to any foreign militaries. As the West German Army began to retire older vehicles, the Chilean government agreed to acquire 200 Marders; the government of Greece has considered the purchase of 450 retired vehicles in the past. Argentina uses a simplified and locally produced variant, the VCTP, and has a number of vehicles based on that platform constructed by Henschel and built by TAMSE. The intended successor to the Marder 1 was initially the Marder 2 project in the 1990s, but after its cancellation the successor became the Puma in the 2010s. The Marder is currently being replaced by the Puma.

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