UK engineering group Horiba Mira has unveiled the Centaur, a mid-sized multirole unmanned ground vehicle (UGV), at the Eurosatory 2018 exhibition in Paris.
Centaur was developed as a lightweight 6×6 platform that can mount various payloads. “Having spoken to a number of different stakeholders across the defence and humanitarian communities, we knew that there was a requirement for a platform of this size and functionality that could fulfil a number of roles, for example: IED [improvised explosive device] detection, remote weapons station, solider support, and so on,” Rob Mohacsi, Horiba Mira’s senior commercial manager for defence systems, told Jane’s .
Centaur, a variant of the Viking platform, has been tailored for a Turkish defence requirement. The prototype was built in the UK and production is planned in Turkey by Horiba Mira’s consortium partner, the defence manufacturer Katmerciler. The agreement was signed at the 2018 Turkish British Tatlidil Forum held in the United Kingdom from 11-13 May.
The platform is nearly 3 m long and is capable of reaching speeds of up to 40 km/h. It weighs 2,000 kg and can carry payloads of up to 600 kg. Standing at just over a metre tall, the vehicle incorporates a flatbed on which payloads (from 1.60 to 1.80 m) can be mounted.
Mohacsi added, “It has been designed to fit on the British Army’s MAN Trucks … thus reducing the logistics footprint. For the logistics support application, it can accommodate a NATO standard pallet as well. Centaur also provides electrical power for those payloads that require it.”
Centaur has 2- and 4-wheel steering which Mohacsi said provides “smoother steering capability over skid-steer at low speed and refined control at higher speed”. Mohacsi said the power system “is an electric drive but a new hybrid powertrain is currently under development for production.”