Firm acts on $1.3bn Army acquisition of Hawkei vehicles

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Ashurst has acted for the Department of Defence on the major acquisition of 1,100 Hawkei vehicles for the Army, the first major procurement contract entered into by the Turnbull Government.

The vehicles, to be manufactured by Thales Australia, will replace the Army’s Land Rover fleet.

“Ashurst's long-standing engagement by Defence in relation to this matter has given us the opportunity to be involved in each stage of the procurement process over six years,” said lead partner on the deal, Sarah Ross-Smith.

Manufactured at the Thales Australia Bendigo facility, Ross-Smith said the government estimates that the project will keep around 170 jobs in the Bendigo region and a further 60 in wider Victoria, significant following recent job losses in the vehicle manufacturing sector.

She said the vehicles will provide the Army with further protection against the threat of roadside bombs and is a significant investment for the Department of Defence.

“It has been a real career highlight for many of our team to have assisted Defence in another of its major procurement projects, which will help to ensure that our service men and women have access to the latest technology which could potentially save lives.

“This is one of the reasons working with Defence continues to remain so professionally and personally satisfying to us.”

The Hawkei is a light protected mobility vehicle with significant manoeuvrability relative to its size.  Its’s "V" shaped hull is designed to ensure greater personnel protection in asymmetric combat operations.