South African company SVI (Special Vehicle Innovation) have released their updated Max 3 armoured vehicle, which is based on the popular Toyota LandCruiser 79 Series.
With bodywork comprising of 38-millimetre thick armoured glass and steel plates, the Max 3 offers B6 ballistic protection – good enough to stop high-powered 5.56mm and 7.62mm rounds. And if that’s not enough and can be upgraded to B7, for protection against armour-piercing bullets.
If you’re interested in returning fire, the Max 3 can be optioned up with a 12.7mm machine gun, a Thales automatic mortar or remote-operated machine gun turret.
Underneath all of that protection is a standard Toyota 79 Series LandCruiser ladder chassis, with leaf springs at the rear and coil springs up front. The SVI conversion removes the so-called ‘soft skin’ body, and replaces it with the armoured body.
This is a key part of the appeal of the Max 3, which works out to be a relatively lightweight and cheap armoured vehicle. Using the LandCruiser base also keeps servicing, parts and repairs relatively easy.
The SVI Max 3 can be had in either left or right hand drive, and a variety of different formats. Pictured is the Australian-favourite dual-cab ute, with a tray at the back and room for four aboard.
Weighing in at 3800 kilograms – 1625 kilograms more than a regular 79 Series LandCruiser – the SVI Max 3 is capable of 140 kilometres per hour when fitted with the 151kW/450Nm, '1VD-FTV' 4.5-litre turbo diesel V8.
While that’s our only engine option in Australia, the 79 Series LandCruiser is also available with a 4.0 litre petrol V6 (170kW/360Nm) or 4.2-litre six-cylinder diesel engine (96kW/284Nm).
Prices start from R1.5 million (AU$133,765), with a three-month lead time on orders. SVI has already begun delivering MAX 3s to customers, which includes a mining company.