Desert Puma

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The Bundeswehr is putting its new Puma armored infantry fighting vehicle (AIFV) through the paces in desert conditions in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) over the next two months.

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Bundeswehr photo by Ralph Zwilling

On 27 August, an Antonov An-124 of the Strategic Airlift Interim Solution (SALIS) program flew two Pumas from Leipzig-Halle to the UAE, where 20-30 members of two testing facilities -- WTD 91 Meppen (weapons) and WTD Trier (mobility) -- are testing the AIFVs under the leadership of the Bundesamt für Ausrüstung, Informationstechnik und Nutzung der Bundeswehr (BAAINBw), the Federal Office of Bundeswehr Equipment, Information Technology and In-Service Support. The Pumas will conduct firing and driving tests and their performance in hot climates will be assessed, including the temperature inside the vehicles.

Depending on the results of these tests, the first of a total of 350 Pumas ordered by the Bundeswehr will be delivered to their units next year.

The Puma successfully completed cold weather tests in Norway in 2012.

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