The Norwegian procurement agency Forsvarsmateriell (FMA) has handed over the first three of six WiSENT 2 armoured support vehicles on order. According to the FMA, the handover took place at the Rødsmoen training area near Rena – about 170 km north of Oslo – as part of a demonstration of the vehicles’ capabilities. The vehicles are to be stationed at Rena, one of the largest military bases in Northern Europe. The remaining three WiSENT 2s are to be delivered in 2022 and stationed in northern Norway.
In September 2018, the FMA reached agreement with Flensburger Fahrzeugbau Gesellschaft on the delivery of six WiSENT 2 AUV NOR support vehicles for €45M. Accordingly, the first vehicle was delivered for acceptance testing in 2019 and series delivery has now begun. The WiSENT 2 Armoured Engineer Vehicle (AEV) has a LEOPARD 2 chassis. The vehicle can be configured from an engineer vehicle to an Armoured Recovery Vehicle (ARV), or vice versa, in just a few hours.
Features of the ARV include a crane for loads of up to 32 tonnes, a 40-tonne main winch including an auxiliary winch and a battlefield recovery system for recovering and towing equipment under armoured protection. As an AEV, the WiSENT 2 is equipped with modern articulated excavators for earth movements of 300 cubic metres per hour and a special high-performance dozer blade.
The main task of the AEV is to support the army’s MBTs with mobility and anti-mobility measures. For this purpose, mainly the digging and clearing capabilities are used. For the task as a breakthrough vehicle, the clearing shield can be replaced by a mine sweeper.
Norway already has six WiSENT 2 ARVs and another 13 LEOPARD 1-based ARVs. In addition, there are 22 NM189 armoured engineer vehicles, also based on LEOPARD 1.