The Merlo Group and the Italian Army continue their partnership with the new off-road circuit for the training of military vehicle drivers.
The challenging off-road route of the Merlo Training and Research Center, designed for the dynamic tests on prototypes produced by the Merlo Group, has also become a circuit for the training of drivers of the VTLM Lince, VM, Defender and of the BV articulated tracked vehicles supplied to the Italian Army.
Making this facility available to the Armed Force for off-road driving training was the natural development of a partnership established years ago between the Merlo Group and the Italian Army, in particular with the Taurinense Alpine Brigade.
Thanks to the expertise of technicians and specialists of the 2nd Alpine Regiment, the necessary integration interventions were carried out and they allowed the CFRM off-road circuit to be qualified according to the most stringent military standards and current regulations.
Environmental conditions and operational contexts, both in the civil and military fields, are constantly evolving and therefore continuous and careful training is essential to be up-to-date on the evolution of vehicles technology and driving systems.
This is why this is only one stage in a path of sharing experiences and skills that enrich specialists and operators with different backgrounds.
The circuit has slopes that reach 100 per cent and there are counter-slope passages that cause rapid changes in the attitude of the vehicle, generating transverse accelerations of up to 2 G, values that are considerably stressing men and vehicles.
A ford over one meter and 20 deep, with an irregular bottom completed by steep entry and exit ramps, characterizes the track in an exclusive way.
The “sand bed” and the “mud bed”, suitably flooded, allow the creation of paths on which the wheels have little or no grip and the vehicle, devoid of directionality, obliges drivers to tackle them with extreme skill in order not to remain blocked and in any case maintain the desired direction.
All this was possible thanks to the foresight of the Merlo Group and of the Commanders of the 2nd Alpine Regiment, the Alpine Troops and the Taurinense Alpine Brigade – all units of the Italian Army – who shared an innovative project and opened new training scenarios to increase the ability to drive military vehicles in extreme off-road conditions.
In the picture from left to right:
Cav. Amilcare Merlo, President of the Merlo Group,
Colonel Pierpaolo Lamacchia, Deputy Commander of Taurinense Alpine Brigade,
Colonel Giuseppe Sgueglia, Commander of the 2nd Alpine Regiment.