The VBMR Serval was developed for the French Army as part of a new generation of light armored combat vehicles under the “SCORPION Program”.
Modern warfare requires highly responsive military vehicles that combine flexibility, strategic mobility and payload capacity to take on a variety of roles on a single chassis. In 2018, the French Defense Procurement Agency awarded a contract to develop and deploy the SERVAL multi-purpose light armored vehicle to Nexter and Texelis. The result was the Serval, which was an addition to the Griffon APC and Jaguar armored reconnaissance vehicle.
The VBMR Serval was developed for the French Army as part of a new generation of light armored combat vehicles under the “SCORPION Program”. The Serval is expected to replace the 40-year-old VAB series. SERVAL uses a conventional 4×4 wheel arrangement on a two-axle, 15-ton chassis, designed to maximize maneuverability in the extremely demanding environments of the battlefield, providing advanced protection and enhanced strategic and tactical maneuverability.
The armored vehicle is operated by a crew of 2, including the driver and vehicle commander/weapon operator. The troop compartment has enough space for 8 fully armed soldiers. Troops enter and leave the vehicle via rear doors.
Serval provides light ballistic protection for crew and passengers, which can resist blasts. Vehicle is equipped with an IED jammer, which prevents detonation of radio-controlled IEDs. There is also a laser warning system and acoustic gunshot detection system, which indicates direction of the shooter. An NBC protection system is fitted.
For self-defense, the Serval is provided with a remote-controlled weapon station, threat detection system, and combat information. The powertrain of the car is an 8.9-liter diesel engine, 375 horsepower, combined with a 6-speed automatic transmission and 1 reverse. The vehicle is also equipped with a small auxiliary power supply, which provides power to the electrical system when the main engine is off. The vehicle is equipped with a central tire inflation system and run-flat tyres.
The contract for the French Army was awarded in February 2018, which included funding for 489 units by 2025, reaching 978 vehicles by 2030. Furthermore, 1060 additional vehicle will also be purchased by 2033. With its light weight, as well as its relatively compact dimensions, the SERVAL can be transported by military transport aircraft such as Airbus’ A400M “Atlas”.