Oshkosh Corp.’s [OSK] Oshkosh Defense yesterday said it will open a new office in Ottawa, Ontario, to support vehicle programs for the Canadian Department of National Defence (DND).

“We are committed to supporting the DND’s vehicle programs and creating programs of lasting value for the Canadian economy,” said Serge Buchakjian, senior vice president and general manager of International Programs for Oshkosh Defense. “Our presence in Ottawa will enable regular dialogue and long-term collaboration–from the initial production through vehicle sustainment.”

The Oshkosh office in Ottawa will provide program management, industrial and regional benefits management, engineering, contract management, and purchasing support for Canadian programs.

The office expands Oshkosh Corp.’s established presence through Ontario-based London Machinery Inc. (LMI), a subsidiary that was founded in Canada in 1905.LMI will provide advanced vehicle manufacturing capabilities including assembly, subsystem integration and final acceptance testing for DND programs.The work will be done by LMI’s highly skilled workforce, applying the latest manufacturing methods and quality processes at the company’s 140,000-square-foot facility. Oshkosh also is teamed with General Dynamics [GD] Land Systems-Canada to provide in-country vehicle support and system integration.

The new office also increases the global presence of Oshkosh Defense. The company has offices around the world, including locations in North America, Europe and the Middle East.

Oshkosh is currently pursuing the DND’s Tactical Armored Patrol Vehicle (TAPV) program, which is to replace the Armored Patrol Vehicle (APV) and the Coyote reconnaissance vehicle. The contract award is expected in June with initial operational capability in 2014.

Oshkosh here faces competition from pre-qualified bidders including BAE Systems, General Dynamics, France’s Nexter Systems, Textron [TXT] Marine and Land Systems, and Thales Australia via Thales Canada.

Oshkosh delivered its TAPV to Aberdeen Test Center in Maryland in August for DND mobility, survivability and weapons testing. The fully integrated Oshkosh TAPV is based on the proven Oshkosh Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected All-Terrain Vehicle (M-ATV) platform and is customized to the Canadian Forces’ requirements.

Oshkosh is also pursuing the DND’s Standard Military Pattern (SMP) portion of the Medium Support Vehicle System (MSVS) program. DND issued the Request for Proposals last month. The company will leverage its existing vehicle platforms and technologies for the MSVS proposal submission, due in April.