Ocelot on the loose

It’s awe­some fun, and no, you can’t have one, writes Mark Hinch­liffe

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Offroad -

IT HAS a Fal­con au­to­matic gear­box, can run on jet fuel, has an F1 en­gi­neer­ing pedi­gree and will with­stand a bomb blast . . . but you can’t buy one.

The Ocelot light ar­moured ve­hi­cle, one of three short­listed ve­hi­cles for the De­fence Forces, has had its first Aus­tralian test run ahead of the multi-mil­lion-dol­lar Land War­fare Con­fer­ence at the Bris­bane Con­ven­tion Cen­tre this week.

De­signed and built by mil­i­tary sup­pli­ers Force Pro­tec­tion and For­mula One-ex­pe­ri­enced Ri­cardo En­gi­neer­ing in the UK, the Ocelot has a steel spine chas­sis that pro­tects the oc­cu­pants, en­gine and driv­e­train from mine ex­plo­sions.

Force Pro­tec­tion spokesman Max Pengelley says Cal­i­for­nia Gover­nor Arnold Sch­warzeneg­ger, who bought a mil­i­tary Humvee and spawned the Hum­mer civil­ian range, hasn’t asked for one . . . yet.

‘‘I doubt we will make a civil­ian ver­sion, but we have had re­quests for an am­phib­ian ver­sion,’’ he says at the Scenic Rim Ad­ven­ture Park near Beaudesert, where the ve­hi­cle went through its off-road paces.

On the prowl: the UK-built Ocelot is one of three light ar­moured ve­hi­cles that are vy­ing for a con­tract from the Aus­tralian De­fence Forces.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.