The Italian army is inching closer to acquiring new tanks and assault helicopters after plans for the purchases were submitted to the country’s parliament for approval on October 11.
The equipment currently being discussed are Centauro II 8×8 wheeled tank destroyers and an updated version of A-129 Mangusta helicopters.
The Centauro II is an improved version of the Centauro tank already in service with the Italian army.
The discussions will take place until November 8, which is the deadline to offer an opinion on the purchases.
According to DefenseNews.com, a first tranche of 11 pre-series Centauro II tanks and 39 production vehicles, along with 10 years of logistics service have been proposed under a 530 million Euro order, which is scheduled to be concluded by 2023.
A request to launch a new “Exploration and Escort Helicopter” program was also submitted to the parliament. The program will be aimed at replacing Italy’s A129 Mangusta helicopters, which are due to retire from service in 2020.
487 million Euros is the initial forecast of the program, which will include a prototype, three pre-series aircraft and one initial operating capability-level aircraft. Three pre-series versions are expected to be upgraded to IOC level by 2025.