Army’s Hawkei vehicle was put on show at Russell Offices, Canberra, on September 2, for the announcement that it was ready to commence full-rate production at the Thales facility in Bendigo.

Chief of Army Lieutenant General Rick Burr said the event recognised completion of the rigorous acceptance-testing program.

The Australian-designed Hawkei will complement government investment in soldier systems such as Armoured Fighting Vehicles, new watercraft and upgrades to the Bushmaster Protected Mobility Vehicle – Medium. 

“Together, these capabilities ensure the ADF has a range of land forces, light to heavy, which are deployable and employable in the immediate region,” Lieutenant General Rick Burr said. 

“The vehicle’s networked systems allow Army teams to connect with new technologies, each other and other components of the ADF.

“Its protection assures the resilience of the network and gives Australian soldiers confidence in demanding and dangerous environments.” 

Warrant Officer – Class 1 (WO1) Mick Briggs, technical adviser – vehicle systems for the Land-121 Ph 4 PMV-L (Hawkei) project, said Diggers would like the Hawkei’s ease of operation and survivability.

The Hawkei boasts an integral computing system, comms suite and other systems, along with easy operation, good survivability and capability.

“I think diggers will like the overall package,” WO1 Briggs said.

“Once you have the training and you understand the vehicle, it’s quite easy to operate.

“Even driving around Canberra roads in the dark this morning, negotiating roundabouts, it was pretty easy.”

WO1 Briggs said diggers should have the same faith in the Hawkei that they do with the Bushmaster.

“You get that same confidence when you get into this vehicle, regarding its survivability, operability and manoeuvrability, that you would in the Bushmaster,” he said.

“It just feels the same and you get that air of confidence that it will do what it says on the box.”