The VAB, which is in service in 20 countries, and the latest generation of which (the VAB Mk3) is being presented by RTD at Eurosatory, can carry 8 infantrymen in addition to its twoman crew. Its mobility capability and high level of protection allow the soldiers to remain under armour and not disembark until they are as close as possible to their objective.
The Cockerill remote-operated weapon station (CPWS – Cockerill Protected Weapon Station) developed by CMI Defence has remarkable firepower, and its stabilised panoramic optics give it a high-performance allweather observation capability. The CPWS can be fitted with armament compatible with the NATO standards for 25 mm (as on the VBCI) or 30 mm (as used on attack helicopters such as Apache or Tiger). These types of armament are capable of engaging targets at ranges of up to 2000 metres. Unlike many competing systems, the turret allows access to the armament and the ammunition feed system from inside the vehicle, thus permitting reloading under armour. The CPWS is also equipped with a 7.62 mm machine gun mounted coaxially with the main armament.
Its integration onto the VAB also allows dynamic modes of combat to be proposed alongside embarked combat units (cavalry) or special forces.
CMI Defence and RTD are two highly complementary players in the land armament sector.