Nigerian Army orders more CS/VP3 Bigfoot MRAP

Chinese Poly Technologies will provide more CS/VP3 Bigfoot Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles to the Nigerian Army after the type’s superior performance in the war against terrorists.

In 2015, Poly Technologies delivered 120 CS/VP3 Bigfoot MRAP (Mine- Resistant Ambush Protected Vehicle) to Nigeria.

According to Chinese sources, additional batch of the CS/VP3 Bigfoot MRAPs have been manufactured by the Chinese automobile company China Chang’an Automobile Group Company (Chongqing), and is ready to be shipped to Nigeria on or before March 2021.

This latest batch will add to the already large plethora of Chinese military equipment paid for by special funds and delivered to Nigeria over the past few years.

Nigeria which is currently battling terrorism, armed banditry, and other security crises is ramping up its military capabilities to better deal with the issue.

In Nigeria, Poly Technologies’ Bigfoot MRAP has somewhat earned a positive reputation for its reliability and troops protection capability against small arms, light weapons and improvised explosives prevalent in the troubled region.

A CS/VP3 Bigfoot MRAP leading a Nigerian Army convoy in the restive Sambisa forest (Nigerian Army image)

At least a dozen CS/VP3 Bigfoot have been reported captured or destroyed by terrorist’s IED in Nigeria however, despite severe damage to the vehicle, personnel usually come out unscathed.

On 3 January, the Nigerian Army launched “Operation Tura Takaibango”, -a sub-campaign of the well-known Operation Lafiya Dole to completely rid the dreaded Alagarno of terrorist elements. The campaign began with the amassing of a vast amount of weaponries and hardware including newly acquired VT-4 (MBT-3000) main battle tanks, ST-1 105 mm tank gun support and tank destroyers, several streit armoured personnel carriers, modified SH-5 155mm self-propelled artilleries, Alvis FV 101 Spartans, multiple rocket launcher systems (MLRS), Buffalo guntrucks, and thousands of men drawn from various divisions.

The CS/VP3 MRAP (Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected) was designed and manufactured by Chinese Company Poly Technologies. First unveiled at the DSA 2012, defence exhibition in Malaysia.

Although significantly cheaper than its American or European counterparts, the CS/VP3 offers comparable protection, which is why the Nigerian Army still fields it despite operating several MRAPs sourced from South Africa, the United States, as well as indigenous designs.

The CS/VP3 is in service with the police of Nigeria and Uganda.

Ekene Lionel

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