Be Afraid…

KUALA LUMPUR: They built ambulances but now (see the Bernama story below) they want to sell light tactical vehicles for the military. You got to be kidding ,.,,,,

LAEM CHABANG (Thailand), July 20 (Bernama) — Malaysia’s Weststar LDV Sdn Bhd is joining forces with RM Asia Group to develop the light tactical vehicle (LTV), capable of quick response, for the army.

Its managing director, Datuk Seri Syed Azman Syed Ibrahim, said the vehicles, produced at the plant in the eastern Thailand deep sea port of Laem Chabang, are cheaper than those from other parts of the world due to the lower production cost.

He said seven units had been delivered to the Malaysian armed forces for trials, adding that the prototype vehicles took 15 months to develop and produce.

The prototype vehicles were presented to Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak who came to the plant here during his recent visit to Thailand to attend the Malaysia-Thailand General Border Committee meeting.

“The vehicles are suitable for the environment in the region. They can also save money for the government as they are much more cheaper than those produced in other parts of the world,” he said in an interview here.

Syed Azman said the plant, with a 1,000 workforce, was capable of producing about 15,000 units a year and the vehicles were exported to over 22 countries, and were also used by the United States military in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as the United Nations aid and development programmes.

RM Asia supplies and services emergency vehicles (fire trucks and ambulances).

Weststar LDV, a part of the Weststar Group, entered into an agreement with the LDV Group Ltd of Birmingham, the independent van specialist, last year to manufacture the LDV Maxus range of commercial vehicles in Malaysia.

On the group’s expansion plan, Syed Azman, who owns 80 per cent of the group, said its aviation division, Weststar Aviation, would add another four helicopters by 2010 to beef up its current fleet of 10.

“The demand for helicopter charter services is growing, especially with the high oil and gas prices that boost offshore activities. We are also going into the markets in Thailand and Indonesia,” he said.



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About Marhalim Abas 2141 Articles
Shah Alam


  1. Uhm… And what kind of vehicle is it? Is it just another Humvee-clone or something more fancy?

  2. I have not seen any pictures of the Westar LTV nor heard any problems with the ambulances that the company supplied to the Health ministry. My concern is that with only one vehicle, the company is already thinking about the lucrative military market! As I said be afraid….

  3. Well, at least their partner, RM Asia is quite big. They got a deal to supply the Afghan army with 5000 plus Ford Rangers.

    Marhalim: If thats the case, I wonder if the LTV co-developed by Westar and RM Asia is just a Ranger in a drag…..

  4. or Navistar as RM Asia is also major buyer of these US made trucks or a true original..,part Ford, Navistar and Thai design….Navistar is also involved in the new programme to replace the Humvees the JTLV…

  5. Yay…I have been advocating the Fedayeenization of the Army for years. It makes it much more difficult for the Singaporeans to track and target our troops who can blend in with civilians, thus neutralizing their overwhelming advantage in firepower. OK…there’s a small risk that they aren’t quite at squeamish as the Yanks and will end up smoking everything that moves on the road….but…hey then we can paint them as the evil baby eaters that they are… win.

    I also propose to equip our recce troops with plenty of Cycle, Motor, Kap Chai Mk 1. They’re ideal. Low audio signature (4-stroke la), very long range and low fuel consumption and very cheap. Plus zero retraining required. Perfect.

    Uhh…no…this sucker is no JLTV. It’s a Ranger chop job.


  6. Do note that I have no problems with the military getting COTS equipment. My biggest reservation is the fact that despite buying civilian stuff we end up paying for mil-spec prices especially when the supplier is a small Sdn Bhd company that no one had heard off before.

    Weststar had made much money from its civilian motor vehicle sales in the past decades (read AP). Now that the rules have been tweaked, its sudden entry into into government sales even with “Malaysianisation ” to me is another worrisome trend from a\nother era. Can I say Mahathirsm?

  7. hmmph.. Grup Gerak Khas is using this vehicles. Painted black, I saw the pixes is Tempur few issues back. I wonder if it’s armoured since I believe, PASKAU and Provost will be using them. Since our military planners are always 10 years behind in revolution of military affairs, eg. we are only leasing UAVs while our neighbours have already ordered or operates MALE UAVs. WE need new brains in MINDEF.

    Marhalim: its two doors Hiluxs (and not HiAces as noted by Simon). No armour as far as I know. COTS are okay as long it is cheap during procurement (no tax) and parts. But thats never the case over here…

  8. Why can’t they continue with the unimog, panzegauer(?) or something as capable? Big tires are always a turn on! Seen one of those Ural 378 (?) trucks with those spanking sexy tyres? Very nice.

    Whatever happened to the unimog anyways? can’t we get licensed copy or something similar? DRB-Hicom is already selling Merc engines arent they?

    Marhalim: As far as I know only the PGA (Senoi Praq) used Unimogs…The Army purchased some Duros several years ago but they are never seen since then. The Pinzgauers are also MIAs….

  9. Kevlar and bullet-proof glass can be turned into a police tactical response vehicle. However, to get an ordinary vehicle into an armoured troop carrier, Malaysia should just buy or build one for that purpose.

    US and Europe engage in current operations at the moment are suddenly aware that there is a need for armored vehicles and lessons learnt from the movie “Blackhawk” down shows how critical armoured troop carrier were (thanks to the Malaysian APC). Malaysia should look into their own region as Australia has successful design and built a battle prove APC – the Bushmaster (rights have been brought over by the French). Was able to see one upclose during the 2006 Comm games in Melbourne Australia.

    If you have seen the demos of similar vehicles in defence exhibitions and lucky enough to ride one, you’ll never want to ride in a modified armoured 4×4 in the streets of Iraqi.

    Marhalim: There is a Thai-based Aussie company which already offers up-armoured Rangers and Everest. It was displayed in DSA 2006. The company is called Craig International. There is no need to re-invent the wheel. MINDEF has yet to write a requirement for up-armoured vehicles. Malcon troops in Lebanon are the most vulnerable troops of UNIFIL. That is why the UN sent them to the Syria-Lebanon border!

    And guess what, RM Asia (Weststar partner) is a service provider forCraig International! I am assuming that the LTVs by Weststar are actually up-armoured Rangers………..

  10. Seen one of the newer Unimogs (boxy rather than looking like the old rounded ones) in Shah Alam. Pinzgauers were seen in Temerloh, mainly used for towing arty I believe, with a leaking transfer case and droopy (lowered) rear end. 🙁 Oh well, malaysia boleh!

    Marhalim: I have not seen the Pinzgauers in operational conditions in a long while. And since there is no news of maintenance or spare parts deal for these trucks I am wondering whether they are slowly drawing down its usage.. The Unimog you saw in Shah Alam probably belong to Mercedes, they got a pre-delivery warehouse in Glenmarie.

  11. Ha ha another gimmick selling l something at the expense of Malaysian people tax payers. This are the worktwo ******* who start with D….then moved to M…… and now with W….. Somebody in the anti corruption agency should monitor this two people who are behind all this business unbecoming maneuvers. Well wherever they go they have been very successful, able to sell 100 LDVs direct negotiation recently with Mindef and LDV is never and would never be classified as strategy military vehicles to justify the direct negotiation but the two ******* managed to do it efficiently. Cheers for them.

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