BAE to fit commercial vehicles with armor

Aug. 15, 2008 at 12:32 PM

CINCINNATI, Aug. 15 (UPI) -- The U.S. government has contracted BAE Systems to install armor technologies in commercial vehicles used by federal authorities.

The $10 million contract is for British company BAE to provide armor for 100 commercial vehicles, including Chevrolet Suburbans and Toyota Land Cruisers, among others, as part of an ongoing U.S. government initiative to protect officials from ballistics and other threats.

BAE, which has been providing armor for commercial vehicles since the 1940s, says the armor technologies that will be installed in the commercial vehicles as part of the announced contract are some of the same counterballistics measures implemented in military vehicles. Despite the added protections, officials say the vehicles still have the appearance of an average vehicle on the street.

"With our expertise in leveraging these technologies in a discreet fashion, the vehicles are indistinguishable from their unarmored counterparts, providing extra security to the occupants," Tony Russell, BAE Systems vehicle armor vice president, said in a statement.

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