Germany Purchases Puma IFVs worth €1.5B

  • Bureau
  • 07:43 AM, May 12, 2023
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Germany Purchases Puma IFVs worth €1.5B
PUMA IFV @Bundeswehr

Germany has confirmed it will order 50 PUMA infantry fighting vehicles (IFVs) and related equipment for €1.5 billion ($1.7 billion) from German defense consortium of Rheinmetall and Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW).

Defense Minister Boris Pistorius said the budget committee in the lower house of parliament gave permission for the defense contract. He said another order for the Puma IFV is possible later this year.

After Russia’s large-scale invasion of Ukraine, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz announced the creation of a special defense fund of 100 billion euros to compensate for the chronic underfunding of the German army in the past. The potential PUMA contract will be financed from this special defense fund.

The first batch of Puma is expected to be received as early as 2024, according to Marcus Faber, a defense representative from the German Free Democratic Party.

The Puma IFV is already in service with the German army; about 350 vehicles are currently in operation. Due to the new purchase, the total number of Pumas in service will reach approximately 400 units.

Problems with PUMA?

Ruprecht Horst von Butler, Commander of the 10th Panzer Division, wrote to the army inspector in late 2022 that the Puma IFVs intended to be used by the Immediate Response Forces demonstrated a large number of defects.

Butler said that the IFV electronics are especially vulnerable, and a serious cable fire occurred in the driver’s compartment of one of the vehicles. He also shared that two IFVs already in service also failed due to turret defects.

In December 2022, the German government suspended the process of re-armament for the new Puma IFVs until the identified problems were fixed.

Germany issued an order for the modernization of 143 Puma IFVs last month, presumably, to correct the shortcomings inherent in the development of the vehicle.

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