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Combat Vehicles R&D Establishment

  • Location
    Avadi, Tamil Nadu
  • Type
  • Facility Status

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The origins of the Combat Vehicles R&D Establishment (CVRDE) can be traced to the Chief Inspectorate of Mechanical Transport Establishment, which was set up in Chaklala (now in Pakistan) in 1929 and the Technical Development Establishment (Vehicles) set up at Ahmednagar in 1947. The Technical Development Establishment was later transformed into the Vehicles Research & Development Establishment (VRDE), with its base in Ahmednagar (Maharashtra). In 1965, India decided to set up the Heavy Vehicles Factory at Avadi (Tamil Nadu) to manufacture Vijayanta tanks with technical cooperation from Vickers (United Kingdom). As part of this project, the Indian government also decided to establish a unit of VRDE at Avadi to facilitate the process of technology transfers from Vickers. This was followed by a decision to create a dedicated Defence Research & Development Organisation (DRDO) laboratory to handle technologies related to armored fighting vehicles. In 1967, the Avadi unit of the VRDE was renamed Combat Vehicles Research & Development Establishment (CVRDE) to distinguish it from its sister organization in Ahmednagar.


Among other activities, CVRDE is involved in the “design, development, and manufacture of prototype tracked vehicles” and provides technical assistance to private and public sector entities in the “production and assemblies of prototypes.” It also modifies “existing equipment” to incorporate “design improvements” and converts existing vehicles for new roles as projected by the armed services.

CVRDE has modified armored tracked vehicles into missile carriers for the Akash and Trishul surface-to-air missile systems and the Nag anti-tank guided missile (ATGM). These include:

  • The Akash launch vehicle has three variants: “launch vehicle, radar vehicle, and command vehicle.”
  • The Trishul tracked vehicle comes in two variants: the “launch vehicle and the mobile command post.”
  • The missile carrier for the Nag ATGM can carry 12 missiles, of which four missiles are deployed in a ready-to-fire mode. The Nag missile carrier has been designed to operate in an nuclear/biological/chemical environment.


[1] “Combat Vehicles R&D Establishment,” Defence Research & Development Organization, www.drdo.org.
[2] “Address Book,” Defence Research & Development Organization, www.drdo.org.


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