Hundreds Of ATVs, Drones, Trucks To Be Procured By Indian Army To Improve Logistics Capabilities

The Indian Army is looking to procure equipment to improve its logistics capabilities, especially in high altitude areas. It is also looking to improve communication systems available to its troops.

The Army has released a Request for Proposal (RfP) to procure 300 logistics rough terrain vehicles. These vehicles will be used for last mile delivery along animal tracks in areas without operational roads. The RfP calls for 4×4 vehicles with kerb weight under one ton and payload of at least 150 kg. The vehicle should have a range of over 100 km and be heli portable using Chinooks. Polaris is expected to offer its range of vehicles and will likely compete with vehicles such as the DACA Dawon ATV. The Army had also floated a separate requirement for 250 ATVs in November 2022.

The Army also issued a Request for Information (RfI) for approximately 300 Tactical Load Haulers (TLH) which can carry up to 80 kg of cargo. The vehicle must have a range of 30 km and endurance of 8 hours in plains. The TLH must also be operable at high altitude regions. 4×4 TLH would be given preference over 4×2 ones. The Wild Goose TLH by Marlom Dolphin being offered in association with Indian conglomerate TVS is expected to be the leading contender.

Logistics drones are high on the Army’s shopping list. In October 2022, two separate RfPs were floated for a total of 363 logistics drones with 10 km range. 163 of these are meant for high altitude use with a payload of 15 kg, while the rest would carry 20 kg at medium altitudes. This was followed by an RfP in November calling for 100 medium altitude drones with a range of over 10 km with a 40 kg payload.

In December 2022, an RfI was released for 570 logistics drones. These would be a mix of standard and high altitude optimized drones which can fly at areas up to 18,000 feet. While the high altitude drones should carry a payload between 20 and 40 kg, the standard version should carry a 40-80 kg payload. The range should be between 10 and 20 km. More such requirements are expected to be floated in the coming months.

The Army would also procure 252 high mobility 6×6 gun towing vehicles capable of towing guns weighing up to 18 tons. These vehicles are meant for the northern borders and would serve artillery and air defence needs. These vehicles are expected to be used to tow ATAGS artillery guns, 150 of which are slated to be ordered soon.

On the communications front, the Army has been granted acceptance of necessity to procure 52,000 Hand Held Radio Sets (HHRS), 2,600 Digital Base Stations and 1,040 Digital Repeater Stations. An RfP has also been released to procure 930 Software Defined Radio Sets comprising 456 HHRS, 314 Manpack Radio Sets and 160 Vehicle based Radio Sets. These are expected to improve the Army’s communication capabilities and security across all operational environments.