Australia awards production contract for German Boxers

An Australian Army Rheinmetall Boxer Combat Reconnaissance Vehicle on display during Exercise Chong Ju at Puckapunyal training area, Victoria, on 16 May 2018.
An Australian Army Rheinmetall Boxer Combat Reconnaissance Vehicle on display during Exercise Chong Ju at Puckapunyal training area, Victoria, on 16 May 2018.

The Australian government announced that it has signed a production contract with Rheinmetall Defence Australia to manufacture 8×8 made Boxer Heavy Weapon Carrier vehicles for Germany.

The signing of the production contract fulfils the intent of the bilateral agreement signed by the Australian and German Governments in March to export more than 100 Boxer vehicles built at Rheinmetall Defence Australia’s Military Vehicle Centre of Excellence in Redbank, Queensland, to the German Army.​

The first Australian-built vehicle is scheduled to be delivered to Germany in 2026 with the final vehicle due in 2030.

“This contract will supply our security partner, Germany, with one of the most advanced armoured vehicles in the world, and supports Australia’s world-class defence industry, not only here in Queensland, but throughout the national supply chain,” said Major General Jason Blain, Head Land Systems Division at the Australian Army.

This contract signing signals the strength of the ongoing partnership between the Australian government and our nation’s defence industry, including Rheinmetall Defence Australia,” added Major General Blain. “Rheinmetall Defence Australia has strong, enduring partnerships with a large number of Australian companies skilled in the delivery of military vehicle capabilities.”

The deal has been hailed as “the single largest defence export agreement” in Australian history and follows the in-principle agreement signed by Ambassador to Germany Philip Green and German Federal Ministry of Defence State Secretary Benedikt Zimmer, and witnessed by Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese during his visit to Berlin in July 2023.

The DoD statement added that the milestone event for Australia’s defence industry would be worth more than A$1 billion to the Australian economy and will generate more than 600 jobs in Queensland with more opportunities across the country via the supply chain, according to Prime Minister Albanese.

Earlier in March 2023, the Queensland government and Rheinmetall Defence Australia announced that full-scale local production of the second batch of Boxer Combat Reconnaissance Vehicles (CRVs) for the Australian Army can commence following the transfer of technology and skills to the local workforce.

The DoD contracted Rheinmetall Defence Australia to deliver and support 211 Boxer CRVs for the Australian Army under the Land 400 Phase 2 project. The Boxer CRV will replace the Australian Light Armoured Vehicle, which has seen extensive operational service since its introduction in 1996.

by Jr Ng