LAND 121 – also known as Project Overlander – is the largest land project in Australia’s Defence Capability Plan. Overall, this is currently estimated as an A$ 7.5 billion (USD $7.6 billion) investment in the Australian Army to replace its fleet of Army trucks, patrol vehicles, trailers and modules. Australia’s “Hardened and Networked Army” meta-program needed to pay attention to these vehicles as well, given an existing fleet that was bought between 1959-1994. As Defence Minister Hill said in 2005:
“Our current fleet is ageing and is becoming more costly to maintain and upgrade. The vehicles will range from lightweight four-wheel drives to heavy trucks and prime movers with interchangeable modules to increase operational flexibility.”
This article looks at Project Overlander, with a particular focus on the major vehicle buys from Phase 3 onward. Some parts of Overlander are even linked to America’s JLTV program, though Australia is also preparing a domestic competitor.