BEST OF BREED

THE TER­RIER LT-79, A LIGHT MULTI- ROLE VE­HI­CLE, OF­FERS TAC­TI­CAL MO­BIL­ITY, HIGH PRO­TEC­TION

Tactical World - - Contents - STORY BY DOUG JEF­FREY, PHO­TOS COURTESY OF THE AR­MORED GROUP

The Ter­rier LT-79 is a new light, multi-role ve­hi­cle, and we got up­close and per­sonal with it. By a Staff Writer

Ad­mit­tedly, we’re a lit­tle like Pavlov’s dogs. When some­one says tac­ti­cal, our ears go up. When they tack on ve­hi­cle af­ter tac­ti­cal, we’re sali­vat­ing all over the place. That was the case when we feasted our eyes on the Ter­rier LT-79.

Just re­cently, The Ar­mored Group (TAG) in­tro­duced its new­est law en­force­ment ve­hi­cle. Their Re­search and De­vel­op­ment Team told us this puppy “rep­re­sents a well-bal­anced com­bi­na­tion of pro­tec­tion, off-road mo­bil­ity and pay­load. Most im­por­tantly, it of­fers un­par­al­leled tac­ti­cal mo­bil­ity and sur­viv­abil­ity to ar­mored ve­hi­cle end users world­wide, in any cli­mate or set­ting.”

Our de­sire to get in this APC is un­par­al­leled, too. For now, how­ever, we must wait. In the mean­time, we can tell you that the stan­dard Ter­rier LT-79 holds as many as eight of­fi­cers (2+6 in in­di­vid­ual MIL-STD seats) or al­ter­na­tively, seat­ing for 10 (2+8) with op­tional bench seat­ing, de­pend­ing on the size of the op­er­a­tors and the amount of gear. Of course, this is ideal for SWAT teams, law en­force­ment and mil­i­tary per­son­nel.

Robert Pazderka, pres­i­dent and founder of TAG, said the LT-79 was de­signed on the Toy­ota chas­sis be­cause parts are widely avail­able, en­hanc­ing ser­vice­abil­ity in many parts of the world.

“It is also an af­ford­able op­tion to end users that need su­pe­rior pro­tec­tion and fleet longevity while stay­ing within their bud­get pa­ram­e­ters,” he said.

And, it’s a ve­hi­cle that goes a long way, lit­er­ally and fig­u­ra­tively, he added.

“The Ter­rier LT-79 is a mod­ern-era hy­brid that com­bines the re­quire­ments needed for com­bat and fire-sup­port sit­u­a­tions, as well as mis­sion-spe­cific roles such as trans­port and lo­gis­tics,” added Pazderka.

While we pa­tiently work out the lo­gis­tics for that ride, please don’t ring any bells. We don’t want to get our key­board soak­ing wet.

THE TER­RIER: AN IN­SIDE LOOK

To find out more about the Ter­rier LT-79, we went to one of the com­pany’s big dogs—nick Levin. The 50-year-old project man­ager has been with the com­pany for close to two years, as well as 10 years in ar­mor­ing and two decades in mil­i­tary ser­vice and train­ing.

TAC­TI­CAL WORLD: GIVE US AN OVERVIEW OF THE TER­RIER.

Nick Levin: Apart from all tra­di­tional law en­force­ment tasks, the ve­hi­cle can be used in mil­i­tary lo­gis­tics for safe trans­porta­tion of per­son­nel to the com­bat scene and med­i­cal evac­u­a­tion (Mede­vac vari­ant).

TW: WHAT MAKES THIS VE­HI­CLE UNIQUE?

Levin: It ex­ceeds all com­peti­tors’ spec­i­fi­ca­tions in its class. The Ter­rier LT-79 fea­tures a higher pro­tec­tion level, higher ground clear­ance, bet­ter off-road ca­pa­bil­i­ties and a heav­ier duty driv­e­line.

TW: DE­SCRIBE THE FEEL­ING OF SEE­ING THIS GO FROM AN IDEA TO A FULL-TAC­TI­CAL VE­HI­CLE.

Levin: It is very grat­i­fy­ing in­deed to see the ve­hi­cle go­ing through the stages of con­cep­tual de­sign, 3-D draw­ings, pro­to­type pro­duc­tion, nu­mer­ous de­sign re­vi­sions and fi­nally be­ing rolled out for a first test drive. It is also a mat­ter of great re­spon­si­bil­ity; the abil­ity of the ve­hi­cle to pro­tect its oc­cu­pants does not solely de­pend on ma­te­ri­als used. It also de­pends on de­sign and engi­neer­ing so­lu­tions im­ple­mented.

TW: WHAT ARE THE KEY EL­E­MENTS THAT YOU FELT THIS NEEDED TO HAVE?

Levin: The ve­hi­cle was de­vel­oped with three key points in mind: Bet­ter-than-com­pe­ti­tion pro­tec­tion-level of­fered as stan­dard, ease of main­te­nance, and the price equal to or lower than that of com­peti­tor’s.

TW: WHAT CRE­ATES THE UN­PAR­AL­LELED TAC­TI­CAL MO­BIL­ITY?

Levin: Over­sized wheels, an up­graded axle, a su­per heavy-duty clutch and top-rated sus­pen­sion el­e­ments. All these im­prove­ments con­trib­ute to tac­ti­cal mo­bil­ity. No sim­i­larly priced ar­mored per­son­nel car­rier (APC) can of­fer as much as the Ter­rier LT-79.

TW: WHAT CRE­ATES THE UN­PAR­AL­LELED SUR­VIV­ABIL­ITY?

Levin: Bet­ter pro­tec­tion level, thanks to the lat­est rolled ho­moge­nous ar­mor used in the ve­hi­cle de­sign, a diesel en­gine with dual in­de­pen­dent ar­mored tank, ar­mored pro­tec­tion of the en­tire en­gine bay and pro­vi­sion for in­stal­la­tion of a tur­ret armed with 7.62/12.7 MG or 40mm AGL. As an al­ter­na­tive, the Ter­rier can be fit­ted with a Re­mote Con­trol Weapon sta­tion.

TW: WOULD YOU LIKE TO ADD ANY­THING?

Levin: The ve­hi­cle has been de­vel­oped and built to achieve both tech­ni­cal and com­mer­cial su­pe­ri­or­ity in its class. Now that road test­ing is near­ing com­ple­tion, we will put the Ter­rier to rig­or­ous bal­lis­tic test­ing. Once the test­ing cy­cle is over, the ve­hi­cle will en­ter se­rial pro­duc­tion in TAG plants and will be mar­keted in Asian and African mar­kets. TW

“NO SIM­I­LARLY PRICED APC CAN OF­FER AS MUCH AS THE TER­RIER LT-79.”

The Ter­rier LT-79 is built us­ing a re­in­forced and mil­i­ta­rized Toy­ota VDJ79 truck chas­sis and com­mer­cial off- theshelf com­po­nents.

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