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The Kodiak pioneering tank quickly raised its shield to a position one meter deep, in which a Leopard 2PL main battle tank - as Poland is currently getting through retrofitting - took a partially covered position. Several such positions can be raised in the defense for the fighting troops. The leopard is now ready for fire fighting. After dodging the main battle tank, the position was filled up again by the Kodiak and the surface leveled.

Change of scene: The Kodiak creates an anti-tank ditch with a wall, with which the movement of enemy forces can be brought to a standstill. Then the ditch was closed and the wall was broken to demonstrate the encouragement of one's own movement. The excavator is normally used here. The breach was opened with the dozer so that the main battle tank could pass the obstacle.

With this demonstration on June 23, 2020, the Kodiak manufacturing company showed sections of the range of services of the pioneer armored vehicle. It was demonstrated that heavy equipment is used to support the operations of the combat troops, which must be as mobile and protected as the combat vehicles. The main tasks of the pioneers include promoting their own and inhibiting hostile movements and building positions. Pioneer armored personnel carriers are used in many armed forces, which have been built on the same platform as main battle tanks.

On the chassis of the Leopard 2, Rheinmetall Landsysteme 2003 and the Swiss group RUAG, in close cooperation with the Swiss army, built the 3 Kodiak armored personnel carrier, which is used in Switzerland and - with adjustments - in the Netherlands, Sweden and Singapore. The close cooperation with the Swiss soldiers, who brought the practical requirements into joint development teams, enabled the rapid development of this pioneering tank.

The three main demands of the Swiss army were: two small winches, excavator arm in the middle, flexible dozer shield. The soldiers responsible had laid down these requirements for their armored personnel carrier after evaluating various studies by other armed forces - for example from Norway.

Photo: Dorothee Frank

The almost 70-ton Kodiak is driven by a 1,100 kW diesel engine, which also ensures the hydraulic energy supply via a connected axial piston pump. A 360 ° swivel articulated excavator is attached in the center front. With a reach of up to nine meters, it has a bucket with a volume of one cubic meter, which - without leaving the protected crew room - can be exchanged for tools such as universal grippers, hydraulic hammers or concrete shears via a hydraulic quick coupling. The leveling system with adjustable dozer blade can be expanded to a width of 4.02 m and supplemented with two rippers. Two light 9-t Rotzler winches with a rope length of 200 m develop up to nine tons of tractive force, which can be increased to up to 65 tons in a double quadruple pull. A Pearson mine plow with a road marking system with a clearing width of 4.20 meters is available for clearing mines. The adjustable room depth extends up to 30 cm.

Further peculiarities - and significant improvements compared to the 2 armored armored personnel carrier currently available in the Bundeswehr - result from the fact that the Kodiak is based on a Leopard 2 and the badger on a Leopard 1. This gives the Kodiak, for example, much better protection (mine-protected level 4) and a more powerful drive.

The 3 Kodiak armored personnel carrier is next to the - featured in a previous article - WiSENT 2 one of the candidates for the successor to the Pioneer 2 Dachspanzer, for which the competition was launched. By 2030, 44 pioneering machines, according to the Bundeswehr terminology, are to be procured.

Dorothee Frank and Gerhard Heiming


Technical data at a glance

Pioneer armored vehicle 3 Kodiak

combat weight MLC70
Drive 1,100 kW
Maximum speed 68 km / h
Protection Qualified according to STANAG 4569
Against ballistic threats
Level 4 against mines / IED
Winch system Two 9 t Rotzler winches, pulling force 65 t with double quadruple pull, cable length 200 m
Central articulated arm excavator with bucket and hydraulic interface for tools Range: 9 m
Shovel volume 1 m³
Lifting capacity 3.5 tons (when fully unloaded)
Equipment Universal gripper, hydraulic hammer, concrete scissors
Leveling system Width 3.42 m 4.02 m with extensions
Adjustable dozer sign with two rippers
Mine clearing system (optional) Clearing width up to 4.2 m
Room depth up to 30 cm