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Category: Armour

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Australian Light Armoured Vehicles (ASLAV) & (NZLAV)

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It is called ASLAV. AS is the UN abbreviation for Australia. LAV is Light Armoured Vehicle.


The MAG 58 7.62mm Machine Gun mounted between the crew commander and gunner on the forward part of the turret roof.  This was a trial version on an ASLAV with a 120mm mortar The ASLAV can swim thanks to the protected propellers.

The Australian Light Armoured vehicle (ASLAV), is a highly mobile, amphibious eight wheeled armoured vehicle that is ideally suited to conduct reconnaissance and surveillance operations.

In 1990, a year long evaluation was conducted on 15 light armoured vehicles purchased from the United States Marine Corps. This was to see how wheeled vehicles would handle Australia conditions and what modifications would need to be made.

In 1992 under Phase 2 of the ASLAV Program, the Army acquired 111 of the Australian version of the Canadian manufactured LAV. By 1997 the 2nd Cavalry Regiment was fully equipped with the ASLAV.

Phase 3 of the ASLAV acquisition was approved with the follow on purchase of 144 vehicles with increased levels of local content including the fabrication and assembly of LAV-25 turrets by General Motors Defence Australia.

These vehicles will be issued to training units and the 2nd Cavalry Regiment. The Phase 2 vehicles will be upgraded and the bulk issued to the 2nd/14th Light Horse Regiment (QMI) in Brisbane. This will equip the Army's two armoured reconnaissance units with ASLAVs.

The ASLAV has an eight wheeled configuration (selecting either four or eight wheeled drive), is amphibious and has a range of 600km with a top road speed of 100km/h

The ASLAV has excellent battlefield mobility, as all wheels are equipped with a solid-core secondary tyre next to the hub, allowing the vehicle to function even with eight flat tyres.

Phase 3 improvements include a laser range finder, the latest generation thermal imager, 28V DC electric drive for the turret and improved suspension for the hull.

The heat of northern Australia poses special problems for armoured vehicle crews with interior temperatures reaching 55 degrees centigrade.

The ASLAV is fitted with air-conditioning that reduces temperatures at the crew positions to outside levels. Increasing the versatility of the ASLAV even more is the use of non-permanent Mission Role Installation Kits (MRIKs) to generate several variants from a single hull design.

This is a unique Australian modification and much of the design and development work was done in Australia.

By using these MRIKs and the three different hull types of the ASLAV the Australian Army has at their disposal, the following variants have been developed:

  • ASLAV-25 (Reconnaissance) - A three man reconnaissance vehicle armed with an M242 dual-feed 25mm Bushmaster cannon and two 7.62mm MAG58 machine guns.

  • ASLAV-PC (Personnel Carrier) - A two man vehicle armed with a .50 calibre machine gun and capable of carrying 7 scout troops.

  • ASLAV-C (Command) - A vehicle equipped with enhanced radio installation and radio masts, mapboard, stowage compartments, appropriate seating and annex.

  • ASLAV-S (Surveillance) - A specialised surveillance vehicle equipped with thermal imager, laser range finder and day television camera.

  • ASLAV-A (Ambulance) - Equipped with medical equipment and litter stations this ASLAV can carry three lying patients or six sitting patients.

  • ASLAV-F (Fitter) - Maintenance support vehicle crewed by soldiers of the Royal Australian Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (RAEME) for the repair and maintenance of ASLAV vehicles.

  • ASLAV-R (Recovery) - Maintenance support vehicle, also crewed by RAEME soldiers for recovering damaged or bogged vehicles.



Differs according to Variant

Radius of Action


Top Speed


Seating (PC variant)

7 fully equipped scout troops

New Zealand Light Armoured Vehicle (NZLAV)

Thursday, April 01, 2004. During the week starting Monday, April 05, a number of the Army's new, New Zealand Light Armoured Vehicles (or NZLAVs) will be seen by motorists on roads throughout the North Island. 

Training of crews for Army's first NZLAV platoon from 1st Battalion Royal New Zealand Infantry Regiment at Linton Camp commenced a few weeks ago, and as part of this training, drivers will gain experience on various public roads throughout   Wellington, Hutt Valley, Wairarapa, Hawkes Bay, Manawatu, Wanganui, Central Plateua and the Waikato Regions. This training is an essential part of ensuring our crews have the full ranges of skills required to operate NZLAV. 

The NZLAV is from the generic family of eight-wheeled third generation light armoured vehicles (LAV III) manufactured by General Dynamics Land Systems Canada (GDLS-C).  Versions of the LAV III are in service with armies in Canada, the US, Ireland, Denmark, Spain, Qatar and Oman. Altogether there are about 5,200 in service around the world.   NZLAV is a specifically manufactured version of LAV III for New Zealand's Army.  It includes a fully integrated weapons platform with state-of-the-art sighting, navigation and, fire and control systems.  The fire control system and stabilisation (fire on the move) capability are a giant leap in technology and capability compared to the venerable M113s.


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