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BAE, Iveco team for South Africa bid

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BENONI, South Africa, Oct. 13 (UPI) -- BAE Systems Land Systems South Africa and Italian truck manufacturer Iveco Defense Vehicles have teamed to pursue a project for the South African army.

The Vistula project aims to eventually replace about 1,200 military trucks in service with the country's armed forces. It's expected that Armscor, the country's military procurement agency, will put out a request for proposals in the next few months.

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"This is a very positive cooperation for us," Johan Steyn, managing director of BAE Land Systems South Africa said in a news release. "The track record of these two companies will ensure a strong partnership."

"We are delighted to join with BAE Systems for this project," added Flavio Marchesoni, S&M director at Iveco Defense Vehicles. "This cooperation will fully exploit the potential of our experience achieved through more than 70 years in the military truck business."

DefenseNews quoted a spokesman for the Turin truck maker as saying that -- depending on the project requirements -- the company was preparing to offer its Trakker or High Mobility ranges, with or without armored cabs. Both vehicle types are available in four-, six- and eight-wheel drive configurations.

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The trucks could be assembled by BAE at one of its vehicle facilities in South Africa.

Germany's Mercedes-Benz, with local company Land Mobility Technologies, has declared its intention to compete for the $467 million contract.

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