The Czech defence minister, Lubomir Metnar, has today announced the signature of a bilateral contract between the Czech Ministry of Defence and Glomex Military Supplies. The contract will govern the order of 1,200 Toyota Hilux sport utility vehicles (SUVs). The order will cost the Czech government an estimated £36 million, with a reported individual unit price of £30,441. The contract will last until 2024, by which time the last Hilux delivery must have been received. The first 800 units will be delivered by 2022, with Lubor Koudelka the head of the Czech Republic’s military procurement agency, stating that the first units will be ready to use by Q3 – 4 2021. The Toyota Hilux variant ordered by the Czech military will be in the pick up category, equipped with five seats to accommodate a maximum of five personnel. The pick up configuration has been chosen to allow the platform to work as an equipment transportation system, in addition to its troop transport capabilities. Glomex Military Supplies, based in Prague, will be charged with the initial procurement of the vehicles from Toyota and corresponding after-market vehicle support. The Armaments and Acquisitions Division of the Ministry of Defence will then manage the military’s reception of the new assets. Once integrated into the Czech forces, the Toyota Hilux SUVs will replace the Czech Republic’s current fleet of Land Rover Defender’s and UAZ-463 light utility vehicles.
The Toyota Hilux SUV variant which Glomex seeks to procure is the eighth generation ‘Invincible’ model. The Invincible is the latest in the Hilux family of vehicles, whose first instalment came in 1968. The eighth generation design was released in 2015 and underwent significant modifications to its front end, in both 2017 and 2020. The 2020 version was unveiled back in June and saw changes made to the front and rear fascias along with LED head and tail light installation. The Invincible is 5.3m long and 1.9m wide with a height of 1.8m. The interior provides five seats in total, with two in the front and three in the back. The vehicle is powered by an 1GD-FTV engine with three cylinders producing a maximum output of 204 horsepower, allowing a speed allowance of 108 mph. The Hilux Invincible is capable of a carrying 1,015kg of additional weight with vehicle’s weight coming in at 2,120 – 2,335kg. The platform’s all terrain credentials are accredited through the ability to wade up to 7m in water and able to clear objects below 3m in height. The Invincible’s prospects for providing a rapid command or patrol capacity to forces in an active battlespace is determined by its four wheel drive system, using a manual transmission to provide greater control over hostile terrain. The likely instalment of a bull bar variant will advance its hostile terrain performance, through making the machine capable of demolishing man-made and non-man-made obstacles.
The Toyota Hilux SUV family is produced by the Japanese Toyota Motor Corporation. The company originated in 1937 as a secondary firm to Toyota Industries, the corporation’s parent company. The firm is currently headed up by company president Ako Toyoda and based in Toyota City in Japan’s south east. Cars manufactured under the Hilux label have gained a deserved reputation for durability and reliability, able to endure significant abuse. The Toyota Motor Corporation’s dealings with the Czech Republic will be nil, with Glomex Military Supplies acting as the connection between the two. Glomex Military Supplies was founded in 2008 in Prague, presently directed by company president Josef Becvar. Mr. Becvar previously served as the Chief of Staff of the Czech Army between 2015 and 2019. The former general’s military service saw military attaché assignments to Paris from 2004 – 2007 and 2011 – 2014. The military attaché role enjoyed by the general in France, allowed him to gain connections in the French defence establishment. Since the appointment of the former military chief to Glomex Military Supplies, with Mr. Becvar eying expansion into French markets. State based contracts under the new company president, have become a major thrust of corporate strategy. Today’s order follows in parallel with a previous state order received back in spring to facilitate the supply of 600 Ford Ranger XLTs to the Polish military, in line with this new strategy. The success of these two state contracts will be a significant boost to the direction Mr. Becvar envisages taking the firm in the long run.