The Jackal was ordered by the Ministry of Defence as an operational urgent requirement for the British armed forces in both Afghanistan & Iraq however only saw operation in Afghanistan. It was during July 2007 when the MoD announced the purchase of 130 of the Jackal 1 variant for use in these countries. The vehicle was initially chosen by the MoD since the vehicle performed well in trials in comparison to WMIK Land Rovers which were proven to be less agile over rough terrain. Because of this increased performance over unusual and rough terrain, obvious routes that are great for ambushing no longer have to be used as the vehicle was made to go off-road. The Jackal 1 has been in operation in Afghanistan since 2008.
The Jackal 2 version of the original vehicle is an improved version which changed the design of the vehicle itself while also being fitted with improved engine and load size/capability. The chassis has been altered so that it can take a larger engine, hold a larger amount of equipment/essentials as well as the main armament being moved a little more to the front of the vehicle which means the operator of the main weapon can aim the gun down more which increases its firing capabilities and line of sight. (LoS) In total around 200 Jackal 2 + Coyote are on order and 100 to be delivered by 2010.
The vehicle has a crew of three, to which there is a driver and 2 gunners who man the 50. machine gun/40 mm grenade launcher and also the 7.62 general purpose machine gun. The vehicle is described by the MoD to be a light all-terrain vehicle which has met certain requirements by the ministry. The Jackal 2 weighs in at 6.65 tonnes, which is quite light for a vehicle of this size, where vehicles such as the Snatch weigh only 4.45 tonnes. Off-road the vehicle is able to maintain speeds of around 49 mph and on-road the highest it can reach is 80 mph. The vehicle can also go on without servicing and refuelling for near 400 miles, where the vehicle has enough supplies on board to keep going. The vehicle was originally intended to not counter the threat of bombs and IEDs as the vehicles are to be used in operations where they go mainly off-road where usually there isn’t going to be a threat of roadside bombs. However there have been fatalities to roadside bombs in this vehicle.
The vehicle can be armed with several munitions.
The vehicle is very open, especially to its occupants which is where sniper fire and shrapnel rounds do not give very much protection or cover. Furthermore with no v-shaped hull, it is not able to keep occupants safe from threats such as mines and IEDs. This is backed up by the fact there have been fatalities involving the Jackal, where incidents have arisen where IEDs and mines have been too much for the Jackal vehicle to thwart. For example in December 2008 two operators of this vehicle were killed when they hit a roadside bomb in Helmand Province. Generally people look at the open top of the vehicle and say that they wouldn’t get into the vehicle however if we compare what the vehicle has replaced (WMIK Land Rover and Snatch Land Rover), then we can come to the conclusion the vehicle is much better protected and more agile in terrain where it is needed in places like Afghanistan thus avoiding threats which it cannot thwart thus in that way it is protected in that sense. But consequences of no v-shaped hull are that people will suffer injuries and fatalities in this vehicle though a step up from its predecessor.