Canadian American Strategic Review


DND 101

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DND 101

In Detail


Canadian Forces  Armour  —  EROC  Cougar  Route-Opening Vehicle

Update Dec 2011: Two EROC Cougars are on loan to the Australian Army for use in Afghanistan (along with an EROC Buffalo and four Huskys). Two other Cougars are being converted into blast-resistant ambulances  for  Op Attention,  the ANA training mission in Kabul.

The  Force  Protection  Cougar
The third  EROC vehicle is FPI's Cougar. The Cougar (not to be confused with the CF's recently retired AVGP of  the same name) carries Explosive Ordnance Dis- posal personnel. The EOD team clear any IEDs not set off by the Husky mine-detecting vehicle or its mine-detonating trailers. The Cougar itself takes no part in demining, it simply transports the team and its gear.

  Force Protection  Cougar  Route-Prover  —  Specifications
  Powerplant:   7.2 liter, 243 kW, 6-cyl. Caterpillar C7 diesel
  Transmission:   Allison HD-4560 P  five-speed  automatic
  Size:   length x 7.08 m, width x 2.74 m, height x 2.64 m
  Weight:   13.61 t, max (curb) 13,635 kg, GVW 15,900 kg
  Payload:   maximum payload up to 1,820 kg  (4,000 lbs)
  Crew:   2  (driver, vehicle commander )  +  8  troops
  Range:   Operational range 965 km  (600 miles)
  Performance:   road speed: 105 km/h (65 mph), ford: 1m (39")

As received by Canada, the FPI Cougar is a JERRV (or Joint Explosive Ordnance Disposal Rapid Response Vehicle), part of the large family of  US blast-resistant MRAP trucks (and originally known as the HEV Hardened Engineering Vehicle by the US Marines). The FPI Cougar is built in 4x4 and 6x6 versions. All of  the CF Cougars are of  the longer, 6x6 type. The 6x6 was designed to carry up to 16 troops but much of the interior space of CF Cougars will be filled with EOD gear including  mine-protected suites, bomb- disposal robots, etc. The Cougar itself is almost as well protected against blast as the Buffalo and better than an RG-31.

Rooms with a View and Mastiff Confusion
When a  CF  Cougar was first announced, emphasis was laid on better protection by reducing window area.  From that, we took it that the new CF  EROC vehicle would be closely related to the British Army Mastiff. Not so. No extra armour panels are in evidence. Deployed CF Cougars are simply late-model JERRVs with extra stowage where rear windows would be. Nor is there a RWS, just the manual gun mount. [2]

[1] MRAP, the US Mine Resistant Ambush Protected program has been hugely expanded. A staggering 17,700 blast-resistant vehicles of various types are on order for the US Army and Marines. Among others, MRAP orders include Buffalo, Cougar, Husky and RG-31 Nyala.
[2] Since the EROC Cougar delivery, Rheinmetall Defence announced that it's mounted an unnamed remote weapon system on a Cougar which "is expected to destroy IEDs at very short range". It's not clear whether that RWS mounting is experimental or a fleet-wide upgrade.

Photo Credits — Cougar/mount sideviews: Stephen Priestley , centre: Force Protection Inc. , middle left: MoD (UK) , all others: DND/CF.