Alcon receives major order from Babcock for the provision of 70 Supacat Jackal vehicle braking systems

Alcon Components Ltd has received a major order from Babcock, Supacat’s build partners, to supply 70 HMT vehicle braking systems. The order has been placed to enable the production of 70 new Jackal vehicles for UK MoD, a contract that was signed between UK Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S) and Supacat in February 2023. Alcon will commence production immediately and will be delivering components to Supacat and their build partners Babcock throughout the remainder of the build.

The bespoke braking systems ordered were first developed by Alcon in 2008 to deal with a challenge that had occurred when the significant additional weight of applique armour was added to the UK’s Jackal and Coyote UOR vehicles. The original braking system had become over-matched, compromising safety and impacting upon operational availability and through-life costs. Alcon delivered a bespoke designed solution that includes calipers, discs and friction pads. On the front axle of each vehicle, the calipers are doubled-up so each vehicle has a total of 6 calipers fitted. Since then, Alcon have supplied the braking systems fitted to all of the UK’s existing Jackal and Coyote in-service HMT vehicle fleet and more recently, to Supacat’s multiple overseas customers, including Australia and Norway. In the UK, over 600 vehicles were procured as a series of Urgent Operational Requirements (UORs) for Afghanistan and post-conflict, these were brought into the UK’s core fleet. The procurement of 70 additional HMT platforms by UK MoD fills a gap in the UK’s fleet requirement under renewed Army structures.

Alcon are highlighting this order as yet another example of a key global defence vehicle OEM turning to Alcon for specific bespoke vehicle braking system support. Alcon are able to work with an unlimited range of military vehicle types and their experience across multiple global programmes has given them the knowledge and credibility to deliver the very best bespoke braking solutions. Alcon braking solutions have been sought out by some of the world’s finest defence industry vehicle OEMs and notably, were selected by Patria to provide the bespoke braking solution for the new 6×6 heavy armoured vehicle. Alcon braking systems are used by over 20 defence and security equipment OEMs, including Babcock, Patria, Supacat, BAE Systems, Ricardo and Jankel because Alcon provide bespoke braking systems that fully meet the demanding requirements of the challenging, high-performance, modern-day battlefield.

Chris Spicer, Managing Director of Engineering and Systems Integration at Babcock said, “We are delighted to be working with Alcon as the provider of the braking system for the Jackal vehicle. The operational demands placed on the Jackal can be extreme, therefore, we require a dedicated team of professionals at every stage of production. In Alcon, I don’t doubt that we have the ideal partner to be working with”.

Phil Applegarth, Director and Head of Supacat said: “The braking system is a key vehicle component. Alcon have designed a superb and optimal system for us. When you need a set of brakes that can stop a vehicle quickly and safely, you definitely need a trusted partner that specialise in the design of bespoke braking systems. We are really proud to say that Alcon is that partner, and we remain committed to continuing our longstanding relationship. We have every confidence they will continue to support us on new vehicle builds and the ongoing support to the in-service fleets for years to come. This order, placed through Babcock, aligns with our strategy to continuously improve our social value and increase our spending in the UK economy, supporting a UK supply chain.”

Jonathan Edwards, Group Sales Director at Alcon said: “Alcon’s relationship with Babcock and Supacat goes back many years. Supacat were one of the first defence vehicle OEMs to recognise the benefits of our experience and capabilities developed at the top of motorsport and performance automotive. Initially, we moved very quickly to help them solve what was at the time a significant braking challenge. Now, nearly 15 years later, we remain Supacat’s braking supplier of choice having delivered braking systems for many new HMT vehicles globally, along with the through life support required to keep them all at the forefront of performance, safety and operational availability. We’re very proud indeed of what’s been achieved and long may this partnership continue. I’d like to congratulate Supacat on winning this most recent order and thank them for trusting in Alcon to continue to deliver.”