The RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police) has become the world’s first police or security force to make use of the International MXT Armoured Personnel Carrier. Navistar Defense Canada announced yesterday that it has delivered on a US$14 million contract from the Government of Canada, to supply 18 of its vehicles to the RCMP. The police force stated that the MXT APCs “will enhance the safety of officers involved in critical incidents" – these could reportedly include hostage takings, armed standoffs, barricaded persons and search and rescue operations.
Its MaxxForce 6.0D turbocharged V-8 diesel engine delivers up to 340 HP, and 660 foot-pounds (897 Nm) of torque. The vehicle itself weighs in at 12,474 kilograms (27,500 pounds), with a payload capacity of 1,814 to 3,402 kg (4,000 to 7,500 lbs).
Along with its big engine, much of the MXT’s weight comes from a MRAP (Mine Resistant Ambush Protected)-standard armored body, designed to provide protection against things like ballistics fire, roadside bombs, and, well – mines.
Because of that armored construction, the vehicle’s relatively heavy doors could be rather difficult to open, so Navistar has built in an air-assisted door opening system. This allows a single person to easily pull open the doors even if the vehicle is parked sloping away from them, or – in the event of an emergency – is lying completely on its side.
Among the vehicle's other features (some of which are specific to the RCMP-spec model) are a 360-degree protected observation tower, fire detection/suppression system, front bumper winch, infrared night lighting, four-level adjustable suspension, and a central tire inflation system – this allows the tires to be inflated or deflated as the vehicle is in motion.
MXTs are already in use by the British Army, in Afghanistan. The RCMP stated that its MXTs "will be used by Emergency Response Teams (ERTs) across Canada as their primary support vehicle when responding to calls."