Tarantula Contract?

Mildef Tarantula 4X4 HMAV. Mildef

SHAH ALAM: Janes is reporting that a Mildef International Technologies Sdn Bhd official as saying that the company will supply 178 Tarantula 4X4 High Mobility Armoured Vehicle to the Malaysian Armed Forces.

The story:

Malaysian firm Mildef International Technologies will supply 178 Tarantula 4×4 High Mobility Armoured Vehicles (HMAVs) to the Malaysian Armed Forces, a Mildef official told Janes on 7 August. The official added that delivery of the vehicles will start from 2024.

Mildef show cased its Tarantula HMAV at the DSA 2022 defence exhibition in Kuala Lumpur. Company officials told Janes at the exhibition that the Malaysian Armed Forces were looking to lease Tarantulas, with the contract scheduled to be awarded in 2023. The Mildef official has not confirmed whether the order for the 178 Tarantulas is for lease or purchase.

Malaysian Defence was told that no contract for the supply of the armoured vehicles has been awarded though. It must be noted unlike the SPH deal which was cancelled by the PMX administration, the deal for the 4X4 remained in the background. Yes, I know I had stated both had been cancelled. But it appears that only the SPH deal had been officially cancelled.

If you recalled, the previous Defence Minister DS Hishammuddin Hussein announced after the presentation of the proposed 2023 budget that the government was buying some 134 armoured vehicles together with unarmoured vehicles under a deal worth RM2 billion. The Janes story says 178 though.

The budget was not approved as the Ismail Sabri government called for a general election a day after it was proposed. A new budget announced by PMX, was later passed by Parliament in February this year and did not include funds for the SPH and 4X4s.

— Malaysian Defence

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  1. Tarantula?!..seriously??..I’ve been informed by the user that this vehicle performed poorly during the trial. Basically, it failed!

    It’s sad and angers me to know despite the numerous gov change, the procurement process of assets is still the same! Doesn’t care about end-user preference.

  2. IMO it is too big and too heavy, and offers only a small performance and protection upgrade from the Condor APC.

    we knew the offer price of the SPH. We also knew the cost of Lipanbara (RM 7.05 million each, which is exorbitant, when the First Win it was based on is only USD 0.513 million each).

    I would love to know what is the price offer of these tarantulas.

    BTW current armor technology has enabled the same protection level of the Tarantula (STANAG 4569 Level 2) to be had on a vehicle that is less than half of the weight of the Tarantula (11 ton empty)

  3. >I’ve been informed by the user that this vehicle performed poorly during the trial. Basically, it failed

    Anyone and everyone can make the claim but unless there’s official report about the trial people would just assumed you pull that stuff out of thin air

    I can claim that a little bird told me the vehicle passed with flying color

  4. Perhaps it was uncancelled (if there was such a thing) after the vendor (ie crony) played ball with the new administration. In the other side of fence, this also happen when SPANCO was reawarded Govt fleet contract after it was cancelled by PN Govt for Naza to managed instead.

    @Red October
    Why this should anger you? Our defence matters, such as the SPH, have been a political football for our ever changing Govts, with it being on-off-on-off depending on who is running the show. Some commenters here even supports this flip flop on the assumption that the end user might just get what they wanted doesn’t matter if it will be 2050 by the time we finally get them.

  5. IMHO I do not think it’s all doom and gloom as some perceive. The Tarantula trials were a few years ago and any defects or issues may already have been addressed. This is the first batch and surely there will be issues. Hopefully the vehicle will improve with later variants. I am just being optimistic.

  6. “yes they do not want the vehicle for various reasons”
    Then is the Tarantula what TDM wanted?

  7. Yeah i seconded that thought but heard that the issue with tarantula is mainly about their bulky and protruding size..Maybe theyve already received some feedbacks and inputs from the army to make the tarantula up to army’s requirement..but yeah to give them a tender of 178 in one go are kinda overstreched but then this news/tender/contract is not confirmed by TDM or menhan yet..its still could be just another rumour untill we heard otherwise..

  8. Nope, as I mentioned before they wanted a smaller 4X4 like the Nurol Makina 4X4 or the JLTV> Thats why even Mildef proposed the Rentaka.

  9. Tarantula like lipan bara as a platform is a bit obsolete compared to the like of JLTV. But JLTV & it’s equivalent are dime in a few with only Oshkosh & Thales is offering a ‘off the shelf’ products while others manufacturer products are still in the prototypes stages.

  10. I would propose MILDEF or any malaysian company to:

    Take KIA KLTV armored chassis.

    Create a full APC version with 2 side doors and 1 rear door (instead of 4 side doors and 1 rear door of current version). Have a full high roof from front to back. To be able to carry 10 person (2 front, 8 at the back). Looks something like the picture below from the side

    Manufacture this in Malaysia.

    Current KIA KLTV APC price is USD 140k. Anything around USD 200k a piece would be okay.

    This is if want to really have 10pax like tarantula.

    If it is to replace condors mission in KAD Cavalry regiment to fight alongside AV8 Gempita, then the JLTV will to, but there will be not much stuff to do by local companies.

  11. On the bright side…if it’s bulky, maybe there is a bit more space inside for our soldiers and bigger sized personnel from allied countries if the need ever arises….

  12. Seems likes Nurol Edjer is the best option. Can carry more personnel unlike JLTV. And also already in service with our UN malbatt

  13. So its back to the good ol times of Govt knows best and enduser can shut up & just accept what is being given. Oh happy days at least enduser should be grateful they are getting something. Let’s hope they do this for SPH and finally close this ding dong. Enduser should just shut up & accept what is given (maybe free 2ndhand M109s finally?)

  14. The role for the 4X4 is for reconnaissance and route clearance much like the old Ferrets. So it is not meant to carry more than four.

  15. Are there 2 4×4 requirements? Tarantula looks more like a Condor replacement than a Ferret type replacement. Or the intention was to swap the Condors with 6×6 vehicles?

  16. Quite agree with @joe. If this Tarantula buy is confirmed, the Army should just be a good bugger and accept what the government has ordered. And see if it fits into its plans. It’s a cart, 4 wheels, nothing to shout about mate. It is not a bloody Black Panther or Leopard!

  17. I dont know why too much hate to local products..they have spent millions R&D… tested for improvements… why not giving it a go. just like indonesia buying its local 4×4.

  18. Doesnt nurol 4×4 have pretty much the same size as this tarantula? Nurol ejder yalcin right? like our malbatt’s panthera or other nurol’s product? Fnss’s and otokar’s 4×4 offering to malaysia does look a tad smaller than tarantula though..So let me get this straight..this contract of 178 tarantula if its true will replace all the condors right? All of them still or still will be the mixture of 6×6 and 4×4?..

  19. There is only one Army requirement for an armoured 4X4 (the other being the unarmoured GS Cargo one). Others are not from them.

  20. Thought Tarantula is just a Nurol edjer with a different skin? No?..

    the problems with ordering tarantula is we are opening another armour factory while leaving existing armoured factory IE Deftech pekan empty then the next 5 years both would be empty as we build another new factory.

  21. @Firdaus
    “178 tarantula if its true will replace all the condors right?”
    We have 400+ Condors. It won’t be for a 1 to 1 if that is the case.

    “Others are not from them.”
    Ohh? Wasn’t the 4×4 + 6×6 angle supposedly a cost saving measure to offset the additional 8×8 APC that TDM wanted? Or was none of them what TDM actually wanted?

  22. The plan was originally for more 8X8 then in turn into 6X6 and then turn into more 4X4 with a small number of 6X6 as fire support vehicle.

  23. Thats some bizarre planning. Is it a case of Gempita bursting the armoured vehicles recapitalisation budget, or Army not clear on what they want, or there never was money to do what they Army wanted, or the Army kept changing its own requirements depending on which generals are leading?

  24. All of the above plus the interference of the politicians. It must be noted that before the 8X8 came into being, the plan was to buy 6X6….

  25. This is the story of condor replacement.

    Originally condors was used for 2 distinct tasks.

    (1) for RAMD and RRD mechanised infantry battalions

    (2) for KAD cavalry regiments in hi-lo mix with SIBMAS.

    For task (1), all condors has been replaced with MIFV, Adnan and IFV version of Gempita. The last remaining Condor battalion, 19 RAMD converted to Gempita.

    The only remaining user of condor in country is now the KAD Cavalry Regiments. So now when anyone talks about condor replacement, it is about (2). So we don’t need 400+ of new something to replace condors as most of the condors has already been replaced.

  26. For the APC requirement. Perhaps just buy Gempita with .50cal armored machine gun turret. The Korean do that with their K808 because of low budget

  27. Let me get this straight, the plan was originally to get 6×6, then morphed to getting more 8×8, then morphed back to getting 6×6, then morphed again (the latest) to getting more 4×4 and some 6×6? So whats the plan now, or no more plans at all?

  28. All Condors in country have been retired. Both 2 and 4 KAD are now light infantry regiment. The new 4X4s will be mainly for them though some will be distributed to regiments with Gempita as well so their Gempita could pad up the other KAD regiments without Gempita. This is the current plan as the 6X6 procurement seemed to be KIVed as well.

  29. 2 KAD is currently one of the main user of AV8 Gempita.

    Even the CBRNE Gempita’s will be co-located at 2 KAD base.

    Most of the Gempita VINGTAQs that is now stationed in Desaru for coastal surveillance is from 2 KAD.

    But 4 KAD, as of early this year, does not have any active armoured vehicle in its inventory.

    Hopefully the armored 4×4 acquisition will be in a “critical mass” to enable gempita’s (which is now equipping 3 squadrons each in 1, 2 and 3 KAD) to be allocated to 4 and 5 KAD too.

  30. The sad story is not about tarantula but the gempita is.
    After all the money had been spent, gempita project seems to end just like that.

  31. @Romeo
    “The sad story is not about tarantula but the gempita”
    Not really, Once a project has fulfilled its requirements it should end. And Gempita has been a multiyear production run which helped the local job factor. What really sad is what came after as all APC/MRAPS orders became carca merba rojak with short production runs and no continuation after and the enduser gets a plethora of incompatible vehicles.
    And as for Deftech, its now PNG as their main benefactor is now in jail and lost a lot of influence. With a new administration, comes a new crop of cronies risen to take its place.

  32. Gempita was a horrible project from a national interest perspective. Burning money learning how to Turn a ‘APC’ into IFV doesn’t contribute much to the nation.

    Such TOT might be useful for countries that seek a more independent foreign policy but the fact is we don’t have the necessary ingredients, capabilities nor desire for an independent foreign policy.

  33. Unfortunately, the PH government led by Tun M made sure that at least until 2030 that no new Gempita will be bought as the vehicle was omitted from the DWP 2019. Unless the DWP is repealed or updated with a new one, the current government or the next one cannot buy more of them.

  34. It is a horrible project because you shouldn’t create a factory and create a bespoke IFV version if there is no political will to invest in buying continuous batches of the same product. This also goes to the Gowinds and also the local assembly of FA-50MY.

    As for the high price. The IFV cost itself (paid to FNSS) is just quarter of the overall cost. The denel turrets and ingwe missile price are paid for in the overall cost also. As is the cost of the Pekan factory and building all the infrastructure for the Gempitas.

    Also the high cost is because of the size of the Gempita. Yes it is 8×8, but not all 8×8 IFV is the same size. It is massively bigger than even the Stryker.

    Below is a picture of Boxer with ASLAV (Aussie stryker version). The Gempita size is similar to the Boxer.

  35. Wasn’t the Army the one that didn’t want Gempita’s because they are expensive and too big? At least that seems to be what some are saying. I always thought the Army wouldn’t mind more Gempita’s if that is what the government is willing to fund (e.g., 10 vehicles a year equals 50 additional Gempita’s in 1 RMK). Among a long list of defense programs, Gempita ended up being overbudget, delayed, but the vehicles have been built, delivered and in use. Gempita could have been in my opinion the platform to standardise the Army’s armoured vehicles fleet into a single platform, enabling developments of additional variants, and supporting an upgrade program over the platform’s 30 to 50 years life. Unless of course, the Gempita is in the user’s experience, a poorly designed and built vehicle – bad quality, expensive to operate, lousy performance.

  36. DWP can be changed and/or amended way before its time frame. UK’s disastrous 1966 DWP was corrected with subsequent revisions in 1967 and 1968. It needs political will and bipartisan support tho and the current Anwar administration is on shaky ground. But where there is will there will be a way.

  37. Yes, but no one wants to do the work to update the DWP 2019, so its likely they are willing for it to lapse in 2030. Unless something happens in the next six years of course.

  38. DWP 19 is still relvant for our needs on 2023 so I don’t think there’s a need for revision first

  39. Supposedly DWP is a 10 years plan until 2030 with a minor revision planned for in 2025. At least that’s what is written on the DWP.

    As for the gempita, I doubt There’s any interest be it from the taxpayers, stakeholders,pen pusher, bean counters,politicians etc etc for more gempita. The current threats perceptions environment in the Indo Pasific doesn’t really called for a whole lot of armoured of any kind. It probably much more beneficial to convert most of the money that should go into armour to acquire a long range precisions munision like OZ current planning.

  40. @Zaft
    “I doubt There’s any interest”
    That’s up to the enduser to say, no? But since there is a push for 4×4 + 6×6 there seems to be a legitimate interest from TDM for more armoured vehicles (regardless of the type bandied about, they just want something).

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