The Portuguese Ministry of Defence procurement agency DGAIED (Direcção-Geral de Armamento e Infra-Estruturas de Defesa) has firmed an agreement with GDELS-Steyr Gmbh (part of General Dynamics European Land Systems) regarding a new schedule for the complete delivery of the 260 PANDUR II wheeled armoured vehicles contracted for EUR365 Million in February 2005 to GDELS-Steyr GmbH (formerly Steyr Daimler Puch Spezialfahrzeug GmbH).

The deliveries planned to be concluded in 2011 are now scheduled to be completed in 2013 according the new agreement dated of October 15.

Since the official delivery of the first 9 vehicles in 31 January of 2008, the programme has suffered numerous setbacks including technical failures with vehicles already built. The final deliveries could be extended to 2014 for the engineer vehicles said the MoD to PoADU.

The initial plan covered the delivery of the first 24 vehicles in late 2007 and the last 47 vehicles in 2010.

DGAIED has contracted 240 vehicles in troop transport, 120mm mortar carrier, ambulance, repair & recovery, reconnaissance, infantry fighting, anti-tank, communications, engineer and command post configurations for the army and 20 amphibian units in troop transport, mortar carrier, infantry fighting and command post variants for the Portuguese Navy (Marinha Portuguesa) Fuzileiros and as well as comprehensive quantities of spare parts.

The delivery of the first vehicles to the navy scheduled to be held this autumn has been posponned to 2011 according the MoD.

In the Portuguese Army, the PANDUR II is replacing the Chaimite V-200 family of 4×4 armoured vehicles of the Brigada de Intervenção (BrigInt) intervention brigade which is part of the Portuguese Army FOPE (Força Operacional Permanente do Exército). The fleet is being partially assembled in Portugal by FABREQUIPA-Sociedade Industrial de Equipamento Rodoviário Lda and includes the involvement of some local companies like EID SA which provides tactical radios and intercommunication systems.

Until October 21, the BrigInt took delivery of 51 PANDUR II carriers and two PANDUR II command post vehicles with 82 additional vehicles in various configurations awaiting reparations and delivery at the DGME (Depósito Geral de Material do Exército).

The project to procure additional PANDUR II vehicles but equipped with a 105mm turreted weapon system is awaiting a decision said the MoD to PoADU. Italian Oto Melara SpA has proposed its HITFACT system and Belgium´s CMI Defence its CT-CV turret. Both systems have been trialed in Portugal in March 2008 and December 2007 respectively. This configuration is intended to replace 15 Textron Marine & Land Systems (formerly Cadillac Gage) V-150 Commando 4×4 armoured vehicles which are armed with a 90mm gun.

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