Thanks to Jonathan for the link!
via Shepard Media...
A few things.Delivery of the first batch of Freccia 8x8 armoured fighting vehicles will be completed by the end of the year, with the exception of 26 vehicles.
So far 160 have been delivered – 126 of which are of the Infantry Fighting Vehicle, 36 anti-tank variants and eight mortar carriers.According to Iveco-Oto Melara all 160 are operational with the Italian Army’s 82nd Reginment Torino, based in Apulia. The total order for 248 vehicles including: 172 IFVs, 36 anti-tank, 20 C2 and 21 mortar carrying vehicles, was placed with CIO – an consortium of Iveco and Oto Melara – in December 2007.
That leaves 88 remaining, however the company also told Shephard that eight of the mortar carrier and 18 C2 variant vehicles will not be delivered this year, so 52 units are expected to handed over by the end of 2015.A second batch of 381 vehicles was ordered by Italy in 2014. Iveco-Oto Melara said in a statement: ‘Parliament approved the 2nd Brigade but we are still waiting for the complete funding. We expect a first order for 30 IFV, to be delivered within the year end.’
The breakdown of vehicles includes: 163 IFV, 120 explorer (reconnaissance), 40 recovery, 36 anti-tank, 14 mortar carrier and eight C2.
The IFV variant is fitted with a HITFIST Plus turret armed with an Oerlikon 25mm dual-feed KBA cannon and 7.62mm co-axial MG.The Explorer reconnaissance vehicles, also called VBM (Veicolo Blindato Medio), still have the HITFIST but are equipped with enhanced ISTAR payload. One type is configured to control UAVs and the other UGVs.
Meanwhile, the anti-tank version is equipped with the Rafael Spike long-range ATGM mounted on the side of the turret.
The company added that they are still ‘waiting for funding’ for an order for the SuperAV vehicle that will replace the existing tracked amphibious vehicles in the Italian Army and Navy. A contract for 72 vehicles for the army and 72 vehicles for the navy is expected.
When we talk about heavyweight wheeled IFVs, there is always one vehicle we leave out...the Freccia. Quite honestly its armored protection (at least on paper) rivals that of the Boxer and its mobility is a high point of the design. One unusual thing about this vehicle is the fact that the Italians seem to be sticking with the 25mm cannon. Could this be a side effect of their doctrine? Their is a tank destroyer version of the vehicle so its possible that because they have a family of vehicles, provide their IFVs with anti-tank missiles and because they're even moving toward integrating UAVs into their armored formations that they don't see a need to upsize their guns.
The last thing is the SuperAV. The vehicle seems to be languishing. They have yet to put it into service and I'm really beginning to wonder if the Italians are simply waiting and watching. If the USMC keeps using the AAV into 2030 and beyond, the thinking might be why should they upgrade?