"Smart Market Solutions to Help Your Business Gain Edge over Competitors"
The global unmanned ground vehicles market size was valued at USD 2.66 billion in 2022 and is projected to grow from USD 3.07 billion in 2023 to USD 5.26 billion by 2030, exhibiting a CAGR of 8.0% during the forecast period.
An Unmanned Ground Vehicle is a vehicle that touches the ground and can function and perform tasks without any humans on board. UGVs provide a flexible robotic system application and multiple applications and mobility support. The main applications of these vehicles are in the defense sector, carrying supplies, surveillance, and assisting in explosive deactivation. This reduces the risk of human lives and impressive vehicle combat performance in civilian applications. These are the primary market drivers for the unmanned ground vehicle industry.
The vehicles mainly use sensors to monitor their surroundings and automatically make decisions in unpredictable situations and unknown information. UGV uses this information to transmit this information through various means of communication to the operator controlling the UGV when assistance is needed. Increasing demand for UGVs in civilian applications such as nuclear plant operations, urban research and rescue, agricultural harvesting and spraying, firefighting, and crowd control aids the market growth.
Rising Investments in Strengthening Armed Forces to Positively Influence the Demand for the Autonomous Products
The Russia-Ukraine war increased defense expenditure and strengthened defense forces from NATO countries. The Russian defense forces used the Uran-6 during the war. It is one of the most advanced UGVs. It is a medium-class complex with a distinctive jug-eared look due to the launchers on the sides. The combat vehicle is outfitted with anti-tank guided missiles, 30-mm automatic cannons, and flamethrowers from Shmel.
Most European countries have increased their defense spending due to Russia’s invasion. Germany increased its defense spending above 2% of GDP and allocated USD 109 billion, more than the total defense bill for 2021. Furthermore, Poland and Denmark declared an increase in their defense budget for security purposes. This increased spending will enhance the overall capabilities of their military forces.
For instance, the U.S. government approved USD 13.6 billion for humanitarian and security assistance. The U.S. will provide Ukraine with USD 800 million in weapons, including anti-aircraft systems, machine guns, small arms, grenade launchers, drones, and anti-armor systems. Thus, growing defense expenditure from European countries and increasing deliveries of next-generation remote control unmanned ground vehicles to Ukraine from NATO countries drive the unmanned ground vehicles market growth.
Request a Free sample to learn more about this report.
Introduction of Artificial Intelligence (AI) to Develop Intelligent UGVs
In recent years, key players have started focusing on developing next-generation vehicles for efficient and reliable operations. The latest technology and artificial intelligence in unmanned ground vehicles will enhance performance. It is designed to withstand challenging off-grid military operations and is helpful in various terrains such as cliffs, grasslands, snow, deserts, and muddy roads. The newly launched robots can carry up to a payload of 352 pounds (160 kilograms) and run 10 kilometers per hour. Intelligent unmanned autonomous systems are man-made and are capable of operations or management using advanced technologies without human intervention.
For example, in February 2021, Torus Robotic Pvt Ltd., a Chennai-based startup, partnered with BEML to develop Artificial Intelligence (AI) based UGV. It can be used in terrain conditions, extreme weather, logistics, and surveillance. Furthermore, in January 2022, China launched the world’s largest electrically powered quadruped robot that helps military reconnaissance missions and logistics.
Growing Demand for Autonomous Systems for Defense and Commercial Applications to Propel Market Development
The rise in demand for autonomous unmanned ground vehicles from the defense and commercial sectors is due to their wide applications. These autonomous vehicles are used in the agriculture sector in soil sampling, mechanical weed control, irrigation management, harvesting, and precision spraying. In addition, the defense forces have widely used these vehicles for combat support, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance activities. Thus, the growing procurement of advanced robots from defense is driving market growth.
The unmanned ground vehicles are embedded with three mobility levels, computer-aided driving, autonomous control, and teleoperation. The system consists of the following sensors: visual, radar, LIDAR, ultrasonic range, vehicle-to-vehicle communication, and GPS. UGVs can be applied for various economic purposes, such as to transport parcels in an automatically locked compartment, to local security using intelligent video surveillance systems, and control industrial facilities through thermographic cameras and gas detectors.
For instance, in February 2021, an Indian startup tied up with BEML for joint development of Artificial Intelligence (AI) based indigenous unmanned ground vehicles. The 750kg autonomous UGV can be deployed in extreme terrain and weather conditions. It can also be used for surveillance and logistics.
Reduction in Defense Budgets and Issues Related to Bandwidth and Reliability to Hamper Market Growth
Reduction in military spending from various countries and reduced expenditure on research & development hinder the market growth. Interruptions in bandwidth with wireless solutions and even with some wired solutions caused a slow reaction time for the controller to the actual UGV. The bandwidth affects other interconnected vehicles due to slow reaction time.
For instance, according to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), the U.S. military expenditure amounted to USD 801 billion in 2021, which shows a drop of 1.4% from 2020. The U.S. military burden decreased slightly from 3.7% of GDP in 2020 to 3.5% in 2021.
Unmanned ground vehicles include various hardware systems such as sensors, communication systems, and control systems. Failure issues in these hardware systems may hamper the market growth. Dropped signals in wireless-controlled robots were the most frequently encountered problems in communication. In addition, there is a waste of time due to occluded camera views and incorrect lighting during search operations. Hence, factors such as component failures and reliability issues may hinder the market growth over the study period.
Rising Adoption of EOD UGVs in the Defense Sector for Different Types of Operations to Drive the Segmental Growth
By type, the market is classified into combat, combat support, reconnaissance, ISR, and Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) UGVs.
The Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) UGV segment is anticipated to hold the highest market share during the forecast period. The increasing demand for explosive disposal owing to cross-border skirmishes creates a lucrative opportunity for segmental growth over the coming years. For instance, in December 2022, the U.S. Air Force awarded a contract to L3Harris Technologies to supply T7 Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Unmanned Ground Vehicle robots. Under the agreement, L3Harries delivered 100 UGVs, and the total value was around USD 85 million.
Furthermore, the combat UGV segment is expected to grow at a substantial CAGR over the study period. The increasing demand for combat UGV in defense for protection against various threats in all platforms, such as land, navy, and air, drives segmental growth. For instance, in February 2023, the European Agency (EDA) announced the combat unmanned ground system development project. Under this project, Combat Unmanned Ground Systems (CUGS) demonstrator’s standard-based architecture will be developed during the first phase. In addition, combat functional modules will be designed and developed in the project's second phase. The total project cost is USD 38 million, and nine European Union members are involved with 28 European industry partners.
To know how our report can help streamline your business, Speak to Analyst
Rising Number of Procurement Contracts to Propel the Demand for Tracked UGVs
Based on mobility, the market is divided into legged, wheeled, hybrid, and tracked.
The tracked segment held the largest share in 2022. The segment is projected to be the fastest growing segment, with a maximum CAGR during the forecast period. The growth is attributed to procuring next-generation tracked UGVs and growing defense expenditure. For instance, in December 2022, Estonian company Milrem Robotics and German base company Krauss-Maffia Wegmann announced partnerships and signed an agreement to deliver 14 THeMIS-tracked Unmanned Ground Vehicles to the Ukrainian army.
The wheeled segment is estimated to have the fastest growing market after the tracked segment in 2022. Its growth is due to the surging demand for UGVs for military operations. The need for unmanned wheeled vehicles is increasing in industrial, natural, and mining environments, used for area mapping, scene understanding, and manipulation.
For instance, in June 2020, Teledyne FLIR secured contracts worth USD 23.5 million under the U.S. Army’s Man Transportable Robotic System Increment II (MTRS Inc II) program. Under the contract, the company will deliver 160 Centaur (UGV) units to the U.S. Army and Navy.
Increasing Demand for Small and Lightweight Robots for Military and Commercial Applications to Boost the Segment Growth
Based on size, the market is divided into small (10-200 lbs), medium (200 - 500 lbs), large (500 - 1000 lbs), very large (1000- 2000 lbs), and extremely large (>2000 lbs).
The small (10-200 lbs) segment was estimated to be the largest and fastest-growing in 2022. This growth is due to increased demand for small and light robots, which can be used both on battlefields and commercially for a wide range of military activities such as Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance (ISR) and combat operations. Industrial small UGVs also use Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) for collision avoidance and maneuvering throughout facilities. Furthermore, small UGVs are used for commercial applications, driving the market growth.
The small segment is followed by the medium (200 - 500 lbs) segment and showcased a significant growth rate during the forecast period. The expansion is attributed to the introduction of next-generation robots and rising spending on the defense sector from various countries.
Experimentation with Advanced Autonomous UGVs by Key Players to Drive Market Growth
By mode of operation, the market is classified into tethered, autonomous, and teleoperated.
The autonomous segment is estimated to be the fastest-growing segment by CAGR during the forecast period due to the rising adoption of autonomous UGVs for ISR and search & rescue operations. For instance, in May 2022, the British Ministry of Defense signed a contract with Rheinmetall AG to supply its seven Mission Master Autonomous Unmanned Ground Vehicles (A-UGVs) to assess their effectiveness in operating with ground troops.
The teleoperated segment is the dominant and largest segment by market share in 2022. The segment is anticipated to grow due to its advantages such as enhanced situational awareness, head-aimed remote viewers, low-latency digital video, and others. For instance, in August 2022, Edgeforce has launched ASTRO (Autonomous Surveillance and Tracking Rover) UGV equipped with teleoperated and autonomous modes which can be deployed for surveillance operations. ASTRO UGV is an all-weather, rugged, semi-amphibious platform. It is a suitable UGV platform for armed forces, paramilitary forces, and gendarmerie for their operations.
Increasing Demand for Communication Links and Guidance Interfaces to Boost Others Segment Growth
Based on system, the market is segmented into payload, control system, navigation system, power system, and others.
The others segment held the largest share of the global market. The increased adoption rate of equipment such as communication links, guidance interfaces, sensor systems, and integration features is anticipated to drive segmental growth. In November 2022, ZeroEyes was awarded a contract by the U.S. Air Force to research and develop AI-based sensors for automated threat detection. The total cost of the agreement was around USD 1.2 million.
The power system sub-segment is the fastest growing during the forecast period. The advancement in battery and power transmission technology is driving segmental growth. In August 2021, Asylon, an automated robotics security provider, was awarded a contract to supply custom battery solutions for unmanned ground vehicles for the U.S. Space Forces.
Rising Use of UGVs for Various Military Applications to Drive Segment Growth
Based on application, the market is classified into military, commercial, law enforcement, and federal law enforcement.
The military segment dominated the global market in 2022 and is expected to lead during the forecast period. The segment is also the fastest growing segment during 2023-2030. The use of unmanned vehicles has saved many lives in the military sector. UGVs are used for Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) such as landmines, heavy loading items, and repairing ground conditions under enemy fire. The military uses UGV technology to develop robots outfitted with machine guns and grenade launchers that may replace soldiers.
The commercial segment follows the military segment in terms of market share and growth rate. The expansion is due to the increasing use of robots for commercial applications in the healthcare, transportation, and automotive sectors.
Regionally, the market is divided into North America, Asia Pacific, Europe, and the rest of the world.
North America dominated the global unmanned ground vehicles market share in 2022 and is estimated to dominate throughout the forecast period. The region's dominance is due to the highest defense budget and increasing spending on procuring next-generation military robots for numerous applications. For instance, in April 2021, the U.S. Army signed a contract worth USD 31.6 million with FLIR Systems to build the Man Transportable Robot System Increment II (MTRS Inc II). It can detect, identify, confirm, and dispose of concealed explosives.
Asia Pacific is expected to witness the highest market growth throughout the forecast period. The region's dominance is due to the increasing defense budget and spending on procuring next-generation military robots for numerous applications. The growth is due to increasing defense budgets of India and China. Furthermore, the rapid expansion of military forces, rising political disputes among neighboring countries, and increasing terrorism lead to the growing demand for UGVs.
Europe also showed a significant growth rate during the forecast period. Its growth is attributed to the rising defense expenditure from countries such as the U.K., Russia, Germany, France, and others. For instance, in August 2021, Russia's Ministry of Defense signed a contract for a prototype of the Shturm unmanned ground vehicle system based on the T-72 Main Battle Tank (MBT).
The rest of the world market is growing moderately during the forecast period. The Middle East & Africa is the fastest growing region in the rest of the world. One of the key players in the Middle East region is Katmerciler. The region of Latin America is also adopting UGV technology and is expected to exhibit moderate growth during the forecast period.
Rising Focus on the Development of Robotics Systems to Drive the Competition in the Market
L3 Harris Technologies Inc. is a global industry leader with a market share of 15.6%. Developing advanced solutions through large investments in R&D activities, collaboration and agreement with operators, and providing cost-efficient solutions to the customers led to the company’s success. L3Harris Technologies is a U.S.-based manufacturer of aerospace and defense products, systems, and services.
The company focuses on the design and manufacture of a robotics system. The company designed the T4 robotics system, a versatile, highly mobile Unmanned Ground Vehicle with high strength and all-terrain, all-weather performance. T4 robot has the power and agility to support the most challenging commercial and military missions, such as Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD); Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, and Explosives (CBRNE) detection; and Hazardous Materials (HAZMAT) clearance.
Furthermore, IDV, a leading developer and manufacturer of military vehicles, has agreed to become the majority shareholder of MIRA UGV, HORIBA MIRA’s Uncrewed Ground Vehicle division.
An Infographic Representation of Unmanned Ground Vehicles Market
To get information on various segments, share your queries with us
The research report provides detailed market analysis and focuses on key aspects such as leading companies, product types, end-users, design, and technology. Besides this, the report offers insights into the market trends and highlights key industry developments. In addition to the factors above, the report encompasses several factors that have contributed to the market growth in recent years.
CAGR of 8.0% from 2023 to 2030
Value (USD Billion)
By Mode of Operation
Fortune Business Insights says that the global size was valued at USD 2.66 billion in 2022. The market is projected to reach USD 5.26 billion by 2030.
The market is expected to register a CAGR of 8.0% during the forecast period 2023-2030.
Rising investments in strengthening defense forces are expected to drive the market expansion over the forecast period.
North America led the global market in 2022 and is expected to exhibit commendable growth over the study period.
“This report is really well done and we really appreciate it! Again, I may have questions as we dig in deeper. Thanks again for some really good work.”- U.S.-based biotechnology company focussing on treatment of chronic pain.
“Kudos to your team. Thank you very much for your support and agility to answer our questions.”- Europe-based provider of solutions to automate data centre operations.
“We appreciate you and your team taking out time to share the report and data file with us, and we are grateful for the flexibility provided to modify the document as per request. This does help us in our business decision making. We would be pleased to work with you again, and hope to continue our business relationship long into the future.”- India-based manufacturer of industrial and specialty intermediates with a strong global presence.
“I want to first congratulate you on the great work done on the Medical Platforms project. Thank you so much for all your efforts.”- One of the largest cosmetics company in the world.
“Thank you very much. I really appreciate the work your team has done. I feel very comfortable recommending your services to some of the other startups that I’m working with, and will likely establish a good long partnership with you.”- U.S. based startup operating in the cultivated meat market.
“We received the below report on the U.S. market from you. We were very satisfied with the report.”- UGlobal hearing aids manufacturer.
“I just finished my first pass-through of the report. Great work! Thank you!”- U.S. based solar racking solutions provider.
“Thanks again for the great work on our last partnership. We are ramping up a new project to understand the imaging and imaging service and distribution market in the U.S.”- World’s leading advisory firm.
“We feel positive about the results. Based on the presented results, we will do strategic review of this new information and might commission a detailed study on some of the modules included in the report after end of the year. Overall we are very satisfied and please pass on the praise to the team. Thank you for the co-operation!”- Germany based machine construction company.
“Thank you very much for the very good report. I have another requirement on cutting tools, paper crafts and decorative items.”- Japanese manufacturing company of stationery products.
“We are happy with the professionalism of your in-house research team as well as the quality of your research reports. Looking forward to work together on similar projects”- One of the Leading Food Companies in Germany
“We appreciate the teamwork and efficiency for such an exhaustive and comprehensive report. The data offered to us was exactly what we were looking for. Thank you!”- Intuitive Surgical
“I recommend Fortune Business Insights for their honesty and flexibility. Not only that they were very responsive and dealt with all my questions very quickly but they also responded honestly and flexibly to the detailed requests from us in preparing the research report. We value them as a research company worthy of building long-term relationships.”- Major Food Company in Japan
“Well done Fortune Business Insights! The report covered all the points and was very detailed. Looking forward to work together in the future”- Ziering Medical
“It has been a delightful experience working with you guys. Thank you Fortune Business Insights for your efforts and prompt response”- Major Manufacturer of Precision Machine Parts in India
“I had a great experience working with Fortune Business Insights. The report was very accurate and as per my requirements. Very satisfied with the overall report as it has helped me to build strategies for my business”- Hewlett-Packard
“This is regarding the recent report I bought from Fortune Business insights. Remarkable job and great efforts by your research team. I would also like to thank the back end team for offering a continuous support and stitching together a report that is so comprehensive and exhaustive”- Global Management Consulting Firm
“Please pass on our sincere thanks to the whole team at Fortune Business Insights. This is a very good piece of work and will be very helpful to us going forward. We know where we will be getting business intelligence from in the future.”- UK-based Start-up in the Medical Devices Sector
“Thank you for sending the market report and data. It looks quite comprehensive and the data is exactly what I was looking for. I appreciate the timeliness and responsiveness of you and your team.”- One of the Largest Companies in the Defence Industry