Saturday, July 17, 2010
The Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) took the wraps off its MaxxPro MRAP vehicles today.
Three armoured Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles, looking somewhat out of place in tropical Singapore wearing desert warpaint, formed part of the National Day Parade Mobile Column. At the time of writing, the MaxxPros are due to take part in the fifth Combined Rehearsal (CR5).
You can see them as part of the Overseas Missions vehicles, which make up Wave Eleven at the tail end of the 2-km long column formed by 210 vehicles from the SAF and Home Team. At the time of writing, if you hurry down to the Padang you should be able to see them drive past around 19:00 Hotel this evening.
Known in Singapore Army service as MPTVs, these armoured 4x4s are understood to be destined for service in Afghanistan as transports for SAF peace keepers.
Singapore has never hesitated in giving its warfighters the extra edge before an operational deployment. The wealthy city state is fortunate it has the financial reserves for such acquisitions and a proper, well-managed drawer plan that scales up the SAF's fighting edge as circumstances prescribe.
The Army's MaxxPros are armed with a remote weapon station mounted with a 12.7mm CIS 50 heavy machine gun and possibly another sensor/weapon to the right of the HMG.
Senang Diri understands that the SAF's search for an MRAP-type vehicle pitted the MaxxPro against the Marauder MRAP, designed by a group of South African defence engineers.
MaxxPros have been in SAF service for some months.
The unveiling of the MaxxPros should be seen in the context of the Singapore Army's greater emphasis on protecting its personnel from direct fire anti-tank munitions and roadside bombs. This is evident when one looks at the add-on armour package fitted to the Leopard 2A4s and the additional bird cage armour fitted to Warthog vehicles that Singapore has built for the British Army. Not to be discounted is the protective role that improved battlefield awareness can serve in protecting SAF personnel, as well as better combat casualty care provided by SAF medical units.
Senang Diri understands that soft skin vehicles now used by SAF teeth arms and combat service support units will eventually be phased out of service. This underscores the SAF's awareness that its area of operations may not have clearly defined front lines, which explains why its logistics train will be hardened.
Alongside these hardware enhancements are moves to raise a number of Civil-Military Relations (CMR) battalions. In the event deterrence fails, these CMR battalions will serve a critical role in the area of operations as hostile units are systematically destroyed and order is restored under Singaporean command.
Observers should note that SAF vehicles taking part in NDP 2010 form only a small part of the armoured and soft skin vehicles that serve Singaporean soldiers, sailors and airmen.
Posted by David Boey at 1:26 PM