General Dynamics European Land Systems (GDELS) announced on 30 September 2021 that it and its partner, Hanwha Defense Corporation (HDC), have been selected by Republic of Korea’s Defence Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) to jointly produce 110 amphibious bridging vehicles for the Republic of Korea Army.
Under the Korean Amphibious Bridging Vehicle (KABV) program, the GDELS M3 Amphibious Bridge & Ferry System will be localized to meet specific Korean requirements and will be designated M3K. The M3K was chosen in a competitive selection process.
M3 is the world’s fastest and most capable amphibious bridge and ferry system based on load capacity, assembly time and maneuverability, both on water and land. The M3 is already operated by the militaries of Germany, the United Kingdom, Taiwan, Singapore and Indonesia. With more than 1.3 km/0.8 mile of bridge length, the Republic of Korea will operate the largest M3 fleet.
«We are very delighted that the Republic of Korea is the fourth Asian customer to select our M3 as their future amphibious bridge and ferry system», said Doctor Thomas Kauffmann, GDELS’s vice president of international business and services. «It reconfirms the unique bridging capabilities of the M3 and demonstrates the essential importance of tactical bridging for modern armies in terms of interoperability and military mobility».
«From an industrial point of view, this project is a great success for our employees here in Kaiserslautern», said Doctor Christian Kauth, vice president and managing director of GDELS-Bridge Systems. «We have established an excellent collaboration with our Korean partner Hanwha. The success is (further) proof of the general advantage of 4×4 solutions when it comes to amphibious bridging and demonstrates the leading role of GDELS in the military floating bridge market».