BCD’s get trained up for arrival of new Tactical Armoured Patrol Vehicle (TAPV)
The British Columbia Dragoons’ (BCD) newly acquired Tactical Armoured Patrol Vehicle, or TAPV, is an extremely versatile and well-equipped platform. With a superior combination of survivability and mobility, it allows the reserve force to blend seamlessly with its regular force counterpart. I recently spent three months in CFB Gagetown where myself and other reservists were trained on the platform in preparation for the first serial of a combined armoured crew commander course. During which, the TAPV’s were to be used alongside the Regular Force’s Coyotes Reconnaissance Vehicle and Leopard 2 Main Battle Tank. The TAPV performed admirably, constantly proving itself capable of traversing adverse terrain and on occasion reaching positions that would be seldom accessible by previous vehicle platforms.
From my experience with the platform I have found that the TAPV should have no issues in fitting into the roles required of an armoured reconnaissance vehicle. Despite its size it is not as loud nor as difficult to conceal as one may think. In some cases it is easier to remain concealed than the G-wagon. For instance, when adopting a hull-down position the TAPV’s Remote Weapons System (RWS) allows it to reveal very little of itself while providing a day and thermal image over the crest. Not only does the RWS substantially increase crew survivability, it also levels the playing field against similar AFV’s with its 40mm H&K grenade machine gun capable of penetrating over 75mm of Rolled Homogenous Armour (RHA) steel, which is more than sufficient for knocking out armoured vehicles.
Over the course of the tasking I learned the off-road capabilities and limits of the TAPV and it continuously went far beyond many of my expectations. Complete with a Central Tire Inflation System (CTIS) and a Cummins engine producing over 1,100 lb⋅ft of torque, there are few places this machine can’t go. However, the switch from a vehicle with a GVW of under 8,000 lbs to nearly 40,000 lbs ( and that’s without additional armour), requires the driver to become proficient in identifying the solidity of terrain. In the next few months of training I hope to continue progressing as a TAPV driver and watch how the regiment chooses to incorporate the TAPV into its tactics.
Written by Cpl. Ogi