Seeking information on Saudi MODA LAVs/Piranhas

Hydroxideblue

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Greetings!

I'm presently trying to find information (photographs, technical details, news excerpts, etc) on late 1980s Canadian licensed produced MOWAG Piranhas sold to the Saudi Arabian Ministry of Defence and Aviation. Most of the information I do possess is from the Janes series, and of photos of the vehicles in Saudi service (predominantly knocked out). This sale took place prior to the SANG purchases of LAVs from Canada, and was orchestrated by the then MOWAG. It included vehicles produced by GKN, and GM Canada. The Canadian vehicles included Assault Gun vehicles with Giat TS-90 turrets, and Giat Lancelot 3 ATGW stations.

95865-6803d58cf0078bfc0d135ce84e21a07a.jpg
Piranha/LAV with Lancelot 3 Turret

id12978-03.jpg

Knocked out Piranha/LAV with TS-90 turret


If anyone has information or documentation they'd like to share, that would be awesome.

Thanks!

Hydroxideblue
 

Foo Fighter

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Just how is that knocked out? Looks more like a breakdown or parked up. Nothing awesome there.
 

riggerrob

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A few years back there was a big stink in Canadian media about Canadian-made LAVs being sold to Saudi-Arabia. Part of the complaint was about these LAVs being used to suppress SA internal rebel groups ... and maybe complaints about them being used against Yemeni rebel groups.
Another grievance was that these LAVs were being shipped complete with weapons (MGs and auto-cannons). Part of the confusion was that Canadian media did not understand how confusing Saudi docks can be. The Canadian manufacturer feared that parts shipped separately would "disappear" from Saudi docks and never be re-united with chassis.
Canadian media are largely pacifists who are totally clue-less about police, military, weapons, foreign gov'ts, etc.

Just research CBC archives for stories about late payments, Saudi human-rights violations, etc.
 
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dan_inbox

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Canadian media are largely pacifists who are totally clue-less about police, military, weapons, foreign gov'ts, etc.
Like just about every other media in the West...
... and they claim to be useful to democracy, too.
 

riggerrob

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Western media may be "lame" but it is still more truthful than Russian media.
After graduating from journalism college, I side-stepped to a career as a skydiving bum. While working in the Perris Valley, California area, I disparaged of reading "the whole truth" in the Los Angeles Times, so used to drive an hour to a news stand that sold: New York times, Washington Post, Manchester Guardian, Toronto Globe and Mail, Paris Match, der Spiegel, etc. It was time-consuming to read 4 or 5 sources to view the same story from 4 or 5 different angles before I started to understand the bigger picture.

One scary trend - over the last decade - is the polarization of American media.
 
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Apophenia

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The GoC has approved export of ~3,000 GM Defense/GDLS-C LAVs since the '80s. The vehicles you are looking for are either GM Defense LAV IIs or GDLS-C LAV IVs -depending upon delivery date.

According to Mac MacKay (of Truckfax in Halifax), the final delivery of 82 x LAV IVs consisted of: 25 x LAV-25 (Delco turret); 24 x LAV-C2; 8 x LAV-AG (90 mm AG); 8 x LAV-AT; 6 LAV-MS (Mortar System); 3 x LAV-APCs; 3 x LAV-AC (Ammunition Carrier); 2 x LAV-A (Ambulance); 2 x LAV-R (Recovery); and 1 x LAV-Eng (Engineer).
-- https://truckfax.blogspot.com/2012/01/saudi-arabian-lavs-in-halifax.html

riggerrob is talking about the distantly-related LAV 700 - a higher-powered LAV III/LAV 6.0 hybrid (the designation coming from the 711 hp provided by its Cat C13 diesel). The LAV 700 has been tested by the US Army ... mainly because its OPM-SANG ends up organizing approvals and funding for SANG armaments.

Note that the GDLS-C webpage (link below) doesn't mention the LAV 700's sole customer. Yeah, I wouldn't be too proud of supplying the Saud family's private army either ;P
-- https://www.gdlscanada.com/products/LAV/LAV-700.html

Other links ...
-- https://www.military-today.com/apc/lav_700.htm
-- https://www.globalsecurity.org/military/world/gulf/sang-lav-700.htm
 

Hydroxideblue

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The GoC has approved export of ~3,000 GM Defense/GDLS-C LAVs since the '80s. The vehicles you are looking for are either GM Defense LAV IIs or GDLS-C LAV IVs -depending upon delivery date.

According to Mac MacKay (of Truckfax in Halifax), the final delivery of 82 x LAV IVs consisted of: 25 x LAV-25 (Delco turret); 24 x LAV-C2; 8 x LAV-AG (90 mm AG); 8 x LAV-AT; 6 LAV-MS (Mortar System); 3 x LAV-APCs; 3 x LAV-AC (Ammunition Carrier); 2 x LAV-A (Ambulance); 2 x LAV-R (Recovery); and 1 x LAV-Eng (Engineer).
-- https://truckfax.blogspot.com/2012/01/saudi-arabian-lavs-in-halifax.html

riggerrob is talking about the distantly-related LAV 700 - a higher-powered LAV III/LAV 6.0 hybrid (the designation coming from the 711 hp provided by its Cat C13 diesel). The LAV 700 has been tested by the US Army ... mainly because its OPM-SANG ends up organizing approvals and funding for SANG armaments.

Note that the GDLS-C webpage (link below) doesn't mention the LAV 700's sole customer. Yeah, I wouldn't be too proud of supplying the Saud family's private army either ;P
-- https://www.gdlscanada.com/products/LAV/LAV-700.html

Other links ...
-- https://www.military-today.com/apc/lav_700.htm
-- https://www.globalsecurity.org/military/world/gulf/sang-lav-700.htm
The vehicles I'm interested in would be the first Saudi purchase (by MODA), prior to the 1,117 vehicles purchased by the Saudi Arabian National Guard through FMS in 1990. The 1990 SANG purchase via FMS (conducted throughout the whole of the 90s, with vehicles being delivered as late as 1999) was on the LAV II for certain. They've made multiple further purchases throughout the 2000s as well. I'm not sure what specific platform the MODA purchased; because while the LAV II, and Piranha II are basically identical, I understand there are some minor differences between the 2. Discussions with the GD-ELS (modern day successor to MOWAG) have been unfruitful, as they are bound by confidentiality agreements on the purchase.

I've never heard of a LAV IV however. Broadly, the LAV family as I know it is LAV I (AVGP), LAV II (LAV-25, Bison, Coyote, SANG LAVs), LAV III (based on Piranha IIIH, encompassing LAV III, and Strykers prior to A1), LAV H which is predecessor to LAV 6.0 and Stryker A1, and LAV-700 being first of the "heavy LAVs" and is the evolution of the LAV 6.0.

I know the LAV-700 well, and have been keeping track of its LAV-700AG derivative's participation in Brazil's VBC Cav program. I saw the video of its test fires with XM913 at Yuma. It's a very cool machine, and I hope the CAF snags a few. They wanted their 105mm DFSV in the 2000s, and now with their new "Direct Fire Support Troop Leader" role as advertised on their recruitment page, they certainly have a machine to fill a need.

Thanks for the help!

Hydroxideblue
 

Apophenia

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Yeah, that 'LAV IV' reference confused me. I've seen it before with the implication of a LAV II with 'go faster' stripes. But I have my doubts.

I've also seen 'LAV Gen IV' but that definitely referred to a possible GDLS-C development of the still-born Piranha IV (which would be eclipsed by the Piranha V).

BTW, I also made a mistake on the 'LAV-MS' which should have been rendered as LAV-M(S) for 'Mortar system (Saudi)'
 

Hydroxideblue

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Yeah, that 'LAV IV' reference confused me. I've seen it before with the implication of a LAV II with 'go faster' stripes. But I have my doubts.

I've also seen 'LAV Gen IV' but that definitely referred to a possible GDLS-C development of the still-born Piranha IV (which would be eclipsed by the Piranha V).

BTW, I also made a mistake on the 'LAV-MS' which should have been rendered as LAV-M(S) for 'Mortar system (Saudi)'
Might be LAV-AMS, AMS being the Armored Mortar System on their LAV IIs. These vehicles began production in 95 as part of the first SANG order. I'll take a look around for Gen IV, might be some information kicking about.
72668491_1043541.jpg lav_ams120_011.jpg


Thanks,

Hydroxideblue
 

Foo Fighter

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Just how is that knocked out? Looks more like a breakdown or parked up. Nothing awesome there.
This is the vehicle in question:
To be accurate, as it say's in the title of that video that the vehicle was seized and burned out. Knocked out is something completely different. Still not awesome.
 

GTX

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Arguably if crew abandon vehicle it is essentially the same (or even worse) than being knocked out...
 

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