Lithuania’s Boxer infantry fighting vehicles to be armed with Israeli turrets and missiles

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It was confirmed last week that Lithuania ordered 88 German Boxer 8×8 infantry fighting vehicles (IFVs). The Lithuanian Ministry of Defense (MoD) though, has chosen to go with Israeli-made turrets for its IFVs instead of the German-made ones. The reasons behind the decision is the high cost of the German turret, as the Germans offered the Lance turret which is a derivative of the turret already used in the German Puma Infantry Combat Vehicle.

Lithuanian boxer IFV

The possibility of arming the Boxers with Israeli turrets was studied, and accepted.  Armed with a Samson 30mm MK II unmanned-operational remote weapons station, these will add a unique feature to the Lithuanian Boxers. The turrets offer a low silhouette, and support a distinctive reloading capability from inside the vehicle, enabling the crew to restock ammunition without being exposed. The turret is designed to mount main and secondary armaments of Eastern and Western origins, including a 30/40 mm automatic cannon, 40 mm Automatic Grenade Launcher (AGL) and 7.62 mm coaxial machine gun. The turret made by the Israeli defense manufacturer, RAFAEL.

Additionally, the turret has space for anti-tank guided missiles, and smoke dischargers. In its basic configuration the Samson Mk II is unarmored, but can be applied with armor protection meeting STANAG levels 1-4.

The turret has two dual-axis, gyro-stabilized, retractable, sights, and weapon mounting system, supporting independent operation for the commander and gunner, enabling ‘hunter-killer’ mode for the crew. Very high elevation angles of up to 70 degrees are also supported, making the Boxer suitable for urban warfare.

Lithuania is due to receive the Boxer IFVs starting from 2017.