We visited Tatra Trucks and Tatra Defence Vehicle
We recently visited Tatra Trucks and Tatra Defence Vehicle to learn about their production results and capabilities last year. We were also interested to know what production and development plans both companies have for this year and further into the future over the next few years.
Video: We visited Tatra Trucks and Tatra Defence Vehicle / CZ DEFENCE
In order to increase production in highly specialised companies, which Tatra Trucks undoubtedly belongs to, a sufficient number of employees is also needed, so we asked what kind of employment policy the company has and what kind of staff increases it will need for the planned expansion of production. Marketing Director Ing. Kamil Košťál told us that due to the company's higher production targets (1,700 vehicles this year and exceeding 2,000 vehicles per year in the next few years), the need for new employees is also increasing. Last year, as part of the recruitment campaign "Tatra is looking for 500 employees", 571 new employees were recruited, while new jobs related to electromobility, hydrogen drives, etc. are currently being sought.
The current conflict in Ukraine, apart from being an immense human tragedy, can also be seen as an accelerator for military industrial production of all kinds, which has naturally been reflected in the increase in the supply of Tatra vehicles to the region. Thus, we asked Ing. Smolka, long-time chief designer of Tatra vehicles, what new design solutions Tatra Trucks is working on. We learned that Tatra is developing a completely new generation of axles with wheel reductions that should guarantee higher load capacity and overall durability. Prototypes of vehicles with these axles are already being tested. Tatra is also working on alternative propulsion systems. A hydrogen fuel cell vehicle is currently being developed, and a hybrid vehicle is also in the pipeline, among others.
A major success for Kopřivnice-based Tatra, in which both Tatra Trucks and Tatra Defence Vehicle participated, was winning a joint tender with the Dutch company DAF for the supply of 879 logistics trucks for the Belgian army. Tatra Trucks is responsible for the production of the chassis in this tender and Tatra Defence Vehicle is producing the armoured cabs for part of the vehicles. At the end of last year, the Belgian customer had already received the first batch of these trucks.
Of course, the Czech Army is also an important customer for Tatra Trucks, which last year received 209 Tatra 815-7 6x6 heavy-duty off-road trucks in a flatbed design, based on a request from the Ministry of Defence of the Czech Republic. This year and next year, the army is expected to receive 80 T-815-7 8x8 heavy-duty off-road trucks, the so-called hook loader for transporting and handling ISO 1C containers.
As part of our visit to the Kopřivnice site, we did not miss a visit to our sister company Tatra Defence Vehicle. The company, as its name suggests, specializes in mobile defence equipment, which is supplied to the Czech Armed Forces and other armies.
A successful joint project of Tatra Defence Vehicle and the French defence company Nexter Systems is the currently mass-produced TITUS vehicle ordered by the Czech Army. Tatra Defence Vehicle also produces Pandur II 8x8 combat vehicles under the license of GDELS, not only for our Army.
The Czech company together with GDELS wants to further develop this platform, therefore, the company is already working on a complete modernization of Pandur vehicles, where these vehicles will have better performance, ballistic protection, mine protection, better electronic equipment, etc. TDV can also offer this modernization of Pandurs within the existing fleet of the Czech Army.
Picture: Specialized STARKOM (STAvebnicový Rušič KOMunikační) vehicle on Tatra Force (815-7) 8x8 chassis with all steerable axles. These vehicles (8 pieces in total) are intended for the Army of the Czech Republic and should replace the old MORUŠ (MOdulova stavebnice RUŠičů) jammers. The new vehicles will be intended for deployment in the front line combat units, therefore a high degree of ballistic protection is required (cab and superstructure). The special equipment of this vehicle includes, for example, a protective jammer against radio-launched explosive devices, powerful communication technologies for communication and data processing, filter ventilation, mobile camouflage, and a 360° camera system. The vehicle weighs 42 tonnes, which is the heaviest vehicle produced by TDV. | Michal Pivoňka / CZ DEFENCE
Like other companies of the CSG concern, Tatra Defence Vehicle is planning further development and expansion of its production capacities.
The Tatra brand will also celebrate several important anniversaries this year. You can find out exactly what these anniversaries are along with other interesting information in our report.