VBTP-MR Guarani

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VBTP-MR Guarani
VBTP-MR Guarani (7810193370).jpg
A Guarani on display.
TypeArmoured personnel carrier
Place of originBrazil
Production history
Mass16.7 t
Length6.9 m (23 ft)
Width2.7 m (8.9 ft)
Height2.34 m (7.7 ft)
Crew2 (+ 9 passengers)

30 mm MK44 Bushmaster II autocannon
7.62 mm FN MAG MG M2HB 12.7 mm M2HB MG
EngineIveco Cursor 9 diesel engine
383 hp
600 km (370 mi)
Maximum speed 110 km/h (68 mph)

The VBTP-MR Guarani (Portuguese" Viatura Blindada Transporte de Pessoal - Média de Rodas; "Armored Personnel Carrier Vehicle - Medium Wheeled Type"[1]) is a 6×6 armoured personnel carrier developed by Iveco and the Brazilian Army as part of its "URUTU-III" modernization program aimed to replace all EE-11 Urutu by 2015.[2] The 8x8 version of the VBTP-MR is the base of Iveco's Superav armoured personnel carrier.[3] In the program other Brazilian Companies also participated, such as IMBEL (Communications), ELBIT (Armaments), Usiminas and Villares [pt] (development of national ballistic structural steel).


In 1999, the Brazilian Army issued a request (ROB #09/99) for a new family of armored fighting vehicles with amphibious capabilities to replace the EE-9 Cascavel and EE-11 Urutu.[4] The main feature of this new family should be its modular design, allowing the incorporation of different turrets, weapons, sensors and communications systems onto the same carriage. The development program also include a communications version, an ambulance version and different fire support versions, armed with large calibre mortar and gun systems.

The Brazilian Army has signed with Iveco a contract worth about €2.5 billion for supplying armoured personnel carriers of the VBTP-MR model. The vehicles will replace the old Urutu armoured vehicle employed today by the Brazilian armed forces. The contract covers the delivery of 2,044 vehicles and logistical support for a period of 20 years. Deliveries are expected to begin in 2012, and continue for 18 years.[5][6][7]

There is also an 8×8 variant of the vehicle.[8]


VBCI-MR Guarani (UT-30BR)
Guarani in amphibious operation

Currently, the VBTP-MR comes in different variants and versions:

  • VBTP Standard;
  • VBCI (with 30mm turret);
  • VBE / CP (command post);
  • VBE / Mort (mortar carrier, possibly 120mm);
  • VBE / Recon (105 mm cannon)
  • VBE / CDT (fire control);
  • VBE / Communications / Command and Control;
  • VBE / Workshop;
  • VBE / Relief;
  • VBTE / Ambulance

The requirements for the VBTP-MR VBCI included an ELBIT remote control turret, equipped with a Mk44 Bushmaster II cannon and a 7.62mm machine gun; it should also be able fire anti-tank guided missiles. This turret, capable of 360 degree swivel and elevation / depression of -15 to +60 degrees, was chosen by the Brazilian Army on a selection made from among four companies. It is expected to be manufactured in Brazil. The firing system has a laser rangefinder, vision and fire control by day/night thermal vision, double shot of command (commander and gunner of the car, with precedence for the later), automatic target tracking system, and hunter killer smoke launchers. A significant aspect of this vehicle is that the turret is equipped with weapons sights and it is stabilized in two axes, allowing firing on the move with very high probability of hit within the first shot. Future needs will determine what kind of instruments will equip the turret, possibly after the vehicle enters service.

Some speculate that the VBE / CP version will fashion a battle management system. The first level at which information must flow in a bidirectional way, what is known as "situational awareness", refers to the tactical commander.

The distress (probably the VBCI) and reconnaissance models are planned to have an 8×8 drive train.


  • UT-30BR turret by Elbit Systems, which will be produced in Brazil by AEL Sistemas S.A (Aeroeletronica). (30 mm autocannon)
  • REMAX turret by Ares Aeroespacial e Defesa S.A. and CTEx. (.50 machine gun)
  • possibly a 120 mm mortar (mortar version)
  • possibly a 105 mm cannon (reconnaissance version)


Compared to the model in use today by the Brazilian Army, the new project brings advantages such as upgraded armor protection, increased mobility, increased range, independent hydropneumatic suspension, increased protection against mines, better ergonomics, air conditioning, brake system with double disc and ABS, GPS, automatic detection and extinguishing of fire, night operation capability as standard and laser detection system.

According to Waldemir Cristino General Romulo, Military Project Manager, there is an interest in exporting the VBTP-MR to other markets, because Brazil has already sold vehicles to Latin America, Africa and Asia-Pacific in the past. The Argentine Army expressed interest in an 8×8 version. Armies also from Chile, Colombia and Ecuador showed interest in the Guarani.[citation needed]

First orders[edit]

Guarani in firing operation

On the 26 November 2009, the Brazilian Defence Minister, Nelson Jobim, announced that President Lula had authorized the start of production for 2044 new vehicles with the new name Guarani, formerly known as Urutu III. According to him the new vehicle would replace the entire mobility system of the Brazilian Army. Also according to the minister, $6 billion would be invested in construction for the Guarani over 20 years. It was predicted that the first vehicle would be ready in 2010 and 16 vehicles would be tested by 2011. From 2012 on, the actual production would begin.

The army commander, General Enzo Martins Peri, signed the contract for the manufacture of vehicles on 18 December 2009. The examinations would be held at Army's test range (CAEx), located in Barra de Guaratiba, west of Rio de Janeiro state. The tests would examine the vehicle durability, ergonomics and armour in situation such as landmine explosions,

Only on 7 August 2012, the Brazilian Army signed a contract to produce 86 Guarani.[4] The order was completed by December 2012.[2]

In March 2014, the 33rd Motorized Infantry Battalion of the 15th Mechanized Infantry Brigade will receive the first 13 vehicles.[1] It will be the first regular army unit to be issued the new vehicle. It will be part of trials using the initial 86 vehicles to figure out doctrine for its use in service.

Potential orders[edit]

Elbit Systems was reported to have won a competition to supply 28 units of 6x6 wheeled armored personnel carriers for the Philippine Army, with the Israeli company offering the Guarani 6x6, and integrated with C2 and communications systems supplied from Elbit Systems.[9]


Current Operators[edit]

VBCI-MR in the configurations of the Brazilian Army
  • Brazilian Army: 500+,[5][6] Deliveries started in December 2012[2] four pre-series and 50 purchased. 86 units were ordered in December 2012, with 2,044 units of the 6x6 variant total ordered (finish by 2030).[7]


  1. ^ a b IHS Jane's Defence Weekly Guarani AFV to enter service with Brazil by Victor Barreira, Lisbon - IHS Jane's Defence Weekly |26 February 2014
  2. ^ a b c "IVECO delivered the first batch of VBTP-MR Guarani armoured vehicles to Brazilian army". Army Recognition. 2012-12-16. Archived from the original on 2013-09-29. Retrieved 2013-09-25.
  3. ^ "Iveco Superav 8x8 Armoured Personnel Carrier, Italy". Army-Technology. Archived from the original on 2013-09-27. Retrieved 2013-09-25.
  4. ^ a b https://dialogo-americas.com/articles/brazilian-army-modernizes-its-armored-vehicle-fleet-with-guarani-project/
  5. ^ a b Exército. "Operacional". Revistaoperacional.com.br. Retrieved 2015-11-13.
  6. ^ a b Roberto Caiafa (2015-11-05). "LAAD 2015: Iveco apresenta seu portfólio". Tecnodefesa. Archived from the original on 2015-10-03. Retrieved 2015-11-13.
  7. ^ a b IVECO delivers first batch of VBTP-MR vehicles to the Brazilian Army Archived 2013-09-29 at the Wayback Machine - Armyrecognition.com, December 16, 2012
  8. ^ [1] Archived April 16, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ "Wheeled Armored Personnel Carrier (APC) Acquisition Project of the Philippine Army". Philippine Defense Resource. 2020-10-23. Retrieved 2020-10-24.[better source needed]
  10. ^ Godoy, Roberto (9 September 2012). "GUARANI - IVECO lleva su blindado al exterior". DefesaNet. Archived from the original on 14 August 2016. Retrieved 29 July 2016.
  11. ^ Santiago Rivas; Florencia Lucero Heguy. "Iveco Brazil Sells GUARANI 6x6 to the Philippines". Mönch. Retrieved 2020-12-01.
  12. ^ https://www.armyrecognition.com/defense_news_december_2020_global_security_army_industry/philippines_to_purchase_28_guarani_6x6_wheeled_armored_personnel_carrier_vehicles.html
  13. ^ Roberto Caiafa. "The Philippines formalizes a contract with Elbit Systems for the purchased of 28 Iveco Guarani armored Vehicles". Infodefensa. Retrieved 2021-02-08.

External links[edit]