Testing of 4×4 vehicles was organised by the Ministry of Defence of the Slovak Republic at the premises of the Military Technical and Testing Institute of Záhorie and was focused on combat armoured and multipurpose tactical vehicles with a view to new sophisticated solutions and future options for replacing existing vehicles used in the Armed Forces of the SR.
The “Test Days” were attended by 8 companies, it means all that count with their participation in the competition for supplies. The company Renault Trucks Defense (RTD) introduced a representative of its Sherpa Light series – the Special Forces version.
The event was attended by top leaders of the Ministry of Defense and the Slovak Armed Forces headed by Minister of Defence Petr Gajdoš, Chief of the General Staff, Army General Milan Maxim and Director of the National Armaments Office, Major General Daniel Zmeko.
On the first day, there was a static demonstration of vehicles on the outdoor area, where participants could learn about the technical and tactical features of the vehicles presented and take a closer look. As part of this demonstration, the RTD with the use of promotional materials presented all versions of the Sherpa Light family that cover all the army’s requirements in this vehicle category.
In the next two days, first there was a practical demonstration of vehicles driven by factory drivers in an off-road circuit with man-made obstacles. The off-road circuit was very demanding and included both the rugged and muddy areas. Our vehicle tackled all obstacles without any problems and demonstrated high mobility, stability and manoeuvrability.
After the demonstration ride, the vehicle was tested by soldiers of different troops of the Slovak Army. Each of the troops formed a vehicle crew and passed the test circuit several times in succession. Afterwards, they prepared assessment of their own in writing according to a structured questionnaire. This assessment was not public, however, in the discussion of crews with RTD representatives, the characteristics of the vehicle were assessed positively.
When evaluating the Test Days, Ing. Stefan Wozniak (Project Manager of the Acquisition Project) announced that based on the test results, selected candidates will be asked to provide detailed information for the next round of acquisition proceedings.
Apart the main focus of this event, Renault Trucks Defense also introduced the Higuard 6×6 armoured vehicle. The vehicle raised a lot of interest among the representatives of the Slovak Army, especially in terms of the large built-up area, allowing the vehicle to be used for a variety of special purposes (command and staff vehicle, liaison vehicle, ambulance, workshop vehicle, etc.).
The participation of the RTD on the “Test Days” was an important step in cooperation with the Ministry of Defence and the Armed Forces of the Slovak Republic.