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Daily News Analysis

High Mobility Vehicles (HMV) 6X6

10th August, 2023 Security

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  • The Army is looking to procure 650 High Mobility Vehicles (HMV) 6X6.


  • The plan is to buy 2,150 such vehicles initially, which can be deployed to transport payloads of not less than 8,000 kg.
  • These vehicles will get deployed on both the western (Pakistan) and northern (China) borders.

  • The plan is to procure approximately 650 high mobility vehicles 6x6 with material handling cranes (HMV 6x6 with MHC).
  • The second RFI is for the procurement of approximately 1,500 high mobility vehicles 6x6 General Service (HMV 6x6 (GS)).
  • The material handling crane will help in loading payloads like artillery guns to the systems.
  • Vehicles of both categories, will be used for transportation of heavy equipment, including ammunition, on metalled roads as well as unmetalled, desert and kachcha tracks.
  • The vehicle will be provided with 6x6 drive and will be capable of operating as a high mobility load carrier with a payload capacity of not less than 8,000 kg in cross-country terrains.
  • The platform should facilitate modification for other uses, including troop carriage, carriage of containers on the flatbed, and any other specialist role.
  • They will be employed in day and night conditions for cross-country and off-road operations in “plain and desert terrains as obtained along western borders of the country, and in high altitude, mountain terrains up to 5,000 metres (16,400 feet) as obtained along the northern borders (Eastern Ladakh, Central Sector and North Sikkim).
  • The procurement of these vehicles is under the ‘Make in India’ spirit. It is meant for Indian vendors who either have the capability to manufacture on their own with 60 percent indigenous content or can manufacture in a tie-up with some original equipment manufacturer but with more than 50 percent indigenous content.

The strategic significance of the move

  • The decision to acquire these high-mobility vehicles comes in the context of the heightened infrastructure development and operational build-up along the northern borders. This approach was adopted following the border standoff with China in May 2020, highlighting the importance of swift and efficient transportation capabilities in mountainous and desert environments.
  • This move aims to facilitate the efficient transportation of heavy equipment, ammunition, and troops across challenging terrains in Ladakh, Sikkim, and the desert regions along the Pakistan border.
  • This acquisition underscores the military’s commitment to enhancing its operational readiness and effectiveness in the wake of recent geopolitical developments.
  • A primary advantage of these HMVs lies in their ability to transport heavy ammunition and equipment, addressing critical operational requirements. Moreover, the inclusion of material handling cranes (MHC) in the configuration significantly streamlines the loading and unloading process of vehicles, reducing manual effort and operational time.
  • The army’s pursuit of these vehicles is not solely focused on improving logistical capabilities; it also underscores the necessity of keeping pace with advancing armored columns during operations. In desert scenarios, HMVs play a pivotal role in transporting infantry troops, towing artillery guns, and carrying artillery ammunition.
  • The 6×6 HMVs should boast a payload capacity exceeding 8,000 kg and the ability to tow a minimum load of 20 tonnes.
  • Furthermore, the platform’s versatility is highlighted as it should be adaptable for various applications, including troop transportation, carrying containers, and fulfilling specialized roles.
  • The vehicles’ durability is underscored by their ability to operate effectively under extreme temperatures, harsh weather conditions, and the logistical capacity to be transported by the Indian Air Force’s IL 76 and C 17 transport aircraft, as well as broad-gauge railway military bogeys.


Q. What is the strategic significance of deploying High Mobility Vehicles on the western and northern borders of India? Elucidate.