Bulgarian JSOC Joint Special Operations Command gets Samarm Guardian Extreme armored vehicles
On February 25, 22 new Samarm Guardian Extreme armored vehicles drove from the manufacturer’s plant to the Joint Command of Special Operations (JSOC) in Plovdiv. Located in the town of Samokov, the plant manufactures various types of armored vehicles in order to meet army and police needs.
The Bulgarian Ministry of Economy had announced on May 22, 2018, that the local company Samarm had invested 5 million levs ($3.0 million/2.6 million euro) in a plant for the production of armored vehicles. Samarm is a 50/50 joint venture of the Bulgarian companies Samel-90 and International Armoured Group BG (IAG, based in the United Arab Emirates). Bulgaria’s government had decided to ask the Parliament to approve the budget for the proposed acquisition of 150 armored vehicles meeting NATO standards and to build national industrial capacity to support the life cycle of the acquired equipment and weapons.
Based on IAG’s original vehicle, the Guardian Extreme MRAP is available in 4×4 and 6×6 configuration with standard STANAG Level II blast and ballistic protection including the engine bay. It can be armored up to STANAG Level III protection using add-on lightweight armor. The vehicle has a V-hull-shaped floor to provide superior blast protection up to STANAG 2a, 2b and 3a. The Guardian Xtreme is specifically designed to meet combat, tactical and surveillance missions and can quickly respond to remote area threats due to its high maneuverability. It can sit up to 10-12 fully geared infantry personnel including driver and commander and is equipped with military-grade certified blast attenuation seats. Optional accessories can be integrated which include automatic remote control weapon station, thermal imaging surveillance camera systems, grenade launchers, black-out lights and much more.
The vehicle can be motorized with either a 6.7L V8 Diesel (300hp/660lb-ft) or a 6.8L V10 Petrol (352hp/457lb-ft), coupled to a heavy-duty automatic transmission and 4×4 drivetrain. It can accommodate up to 5 people.