On 23 June, the Spanish government announced that it had approved the production of 348 VCR 8×8 armored fighting vehicles, with the value of the order estimated to be around €2 billion or $2.24 billion. A formal contract signing is expected to take place in August.
The 🇪🇦 government approved today the building of the first 348 8️⃣✖8️⃣ -out of a 1000- armoured fighting vehicles for the 🇪🇦 Spanish Army @EjercitoTierra for a total amount of 2 billion euros.
— España en la OTAN 🇪🇦 (@SpainNATO) June 23, 2020
The Vehiculos de Combate sobre Ruedas (Wheeled Combat Vehicle), otherwise known as the Dragón, is a derivative of the MOWAG Piranha V. It is manufactured by a joint venture of Spanish defense contractors led by Indra Sistemas, General Dynamics European Land Systems-Santa Barbara Sistemas (GDELS-SBS), Sapa Placencia and Escribano Mechanical & Engineering, with 70% of work to be conducted by Spanish companies in locations including Asturias, Madrid and Seville. According to Spanish Minister of Finance and government spokeswoman María Jesús Montero, the production of the VCR is expected to directly create 650 jobs and 2,000 indirect jobs.
The VCR will replace the BMR-M1 6×6 APCs and M113 tracked APCs currently in service with the Spanish Army. Like its predecessors, the VCR will come in a variety of missionized variants, with 13 configurations currently planned. with so many variants armament will be varied including a turret-mounted 30mm cannon while others will be mounted with a .50 calibre machine gun. According to the Spanish government, the VCR will be better suited to handle threats encountered during current peacekeeping operations compared to the BMR-M1 and M113.
1,000 VCRs of all variants are to be procured in total, with a second batch composed of 348 VCRs and a third batch of 287 VCRs. Demonstrator vehicles are expected to begin firing tests next month, and the first batch of 5 prototypes will be delivered for testing by the Spanish Legion in early 2021. If all goes to plan, the first production VCRs will be delivered in 2022.
This article was written by Albert L and was originally published over on TFB’s sister site, OvertDefense.com. Over at OVD, we cover the latest in military vehicle news and much more. Check out OVD for the latest defense news, updates and more stories like this one!