The Consorzio IVECO-Oto Melara (CIO) has shown a digital design of the IFV envisaged for the Italian Armoured Infantry Combat System (AICS) programme as a 3D image. In an interview with Rivista Italiana Difesa, Claudio Catalano, CEO of Iveco Defense Vehicles, said that the AICS will require around €6Bn for 679 vehicles, of which €2,1Bn has already been allocated for the period until 2035.
As part of a modernisation programme, Italy wants to adapt its combat vehicles to the requirements of the modern battlefield. The first programmes have already started with the procurement of wheeled armoured vehicles such as the CENTAURO II, FRECCIA and the Light Multirole Vehicle 2 (LMV 2). For the DARDO IFV and the ARIETE MBT, whose designs date back to the 1980s, solutions are being sought as to how the required capabilities can be expanded or continue to be provided.
Urgency is the order of the day, which is why talks have already taken place at the highest level to find solutions in a timely manner. In April 2021, Italian Defence Minister Lorenzo Guerini visited the German Ministry of Defence and Rheinmetall to find out about possibilities for cooperation. The Lynx KF41 infantry fighting vehicle was discussed as one possible solution.
The LYNX is modularly designed by Rheinmetall in such a way that customers can easily integrate components from national production. This would make it possible to meet Italy’s requirement that about 70 per cent of the value added be generated in the country itself. The LYNX could also find its way into the PESCO project for the development of a combat vehicle with the participation of Greece and Slovakia under the leadership of Italy, especially since Slovakia had the Lynx demonstrated to it as part of a market assessment.