The Head of the Ministry of National Defence Mariusz Błaszczak informed on social media that the first of the ordered MRAP (Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected) Cougar 4×4 armoured personnel carriers have already reached Poland. Ultimately, the Polish Armed Forces are to receive as many as 300 vehicles of this type, which were previously equipped by the United States Armed Forces. The Cougars may replace the BRDM-2 armoured reconnaissance vehicles currently operated by the Land Forces.
As part of the December 2021 agreement, the Ministry of Defence purchased 300 used MRAP Cougar armoured personnel carriers along with a logistics and training package for the Land Forces. These vehicles will be reconditioned and retrofitted before being sent to Poland. The purchase cost of these 300 vehicles alone was approximately $27.5 million.
As reported earlier this month by Armament Agency spokesman Lt Col Krzysztof Platek, the ordered vehicles, which were sent to Poland, were in low use.
However, this week the head of the Ministry of Defence announced that the first Cougars had already arrived in Poland.
In turn, a spokesman for the Armament Agency informed that the first tranche includes over 70 multi-role vehicles. Further transports of military equipment are to be made in the following weeks.
The Cougar is an armoured personnel carrier with increased resistance to mine and ambush attacks (MRAP) weighing more than 17 tonnes, developed by Force Protection, which was acquired in 2011 by General Dynamics. The MRAP is crewed by two servicemen and is also designed to carry four landing troops. Powered by a Caterpillar C-7 engine with 330 horsepower, the vehicle can reach a speed of 105 km/h and has a range of 966 km. The Cougar can withstand an explosion of at least 14 kg of TNT under the wheel and 7 kg under the hull.
Several years ago, the Polish Army had the opportunity to use Cougar 4×4 MRAP vehicles. Under the Coalition Acquisition and Cross-Servicing Agreement (ACSA), 40 units were loaned by the United States to the Polish Military Contingent in Afghanistan between 15 November 2008 and January 2009.
Przed chwilą do Polski trafiły pierwsze z 300 zamówionych w ubiegłym roku dla #WojskoPolskie wozów Cougar 4×4. Pojazdy już wkrótce trafią do jednostek wojskowych rozlokowanych na wschodzie Polski. pic.twitter.com/ZSKAERYaI4
— Mariusz Błaszczak (@mblaszczak) June 20, 2022