PARIS — France’s military procurement office has qualified the medical evacuation version of its new Griffon multi-role armored vehicle, industry partner Nexter announced Friday.

While VBMR Griffon vehicles have been rolling off the production line since 2019, the first Griffon SAN — indicating “sanitary” — will be delivered in 2023, the company said in a press release. Nexter, Arquus, and Thales are co-building the Griffons for the French army.

This variant will support the recovery and evacuation of injured personnel on the battlefield. Other Griffon variants have previously been qualified by the procurement office Direction Generale de l’Armement for troop transport, artillery observation, and to carry a 120mm mortar, among other missions.

The 24-ton Griffon entered service in 2019 and has been deployed to the Sahel region since 2021, per the French army. It is one of several next-generation vehicles being developed under France’s Scorpion equipment modernization program, alongside the 25-ton Jaguar reconnaissance and combat vehicle — built by the same consortium — and the lighter armored vehicle Serval in development by Nexter and Texelis. France expects to procure 1,872 Griffons, 978 Servals and 300 Jaguars by 2030, the ministry of defense has previously said.

The Griffon and Serval vehicles will replace France’s aging VAB carriers designed by Renault, while the Jaguar will replace three current vehicles: the Giat-built AMX-10RC, the Panhard ERC vehicle and the VAB HOT armored personnel carriers.

Belgium will also acquire 382 Griffon and 60 Jaguar vehicles under the Franco-Belgian Capacité Motorisée — or CaMo, meaning “motorized capability” — program. Deliveries for the Belgian variants are expected to begin in 2025, and are intended to be fully compatible with their French counterparts, army officials from both nations said this week at the biennial Eurosatory conference outside Paris.

Vivienne Machi is a reporter based in Stuttgart, Germany, contributing to Defense News' European coverage. She previously reported for National Defense Magazine, Defense Daily, Via Satellite, Foreign Policy and the Dayton Daily News. She was named the Defence Media Awards' best young defense journalist in 2020.

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