U.S. Army to replace old M113 armored personnel carrier with AMPV Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicle.
Thursday, October 3, 2013 08:56 AM
The U.S. Army is looking into best possible options to replace M113 tracked armoured vehicle personnel carrier with modern battle-ready units that are fit to perform roles in modern warfare. Some of the vehicles in the Army's present inventory were put into service as early as 1961.
AMPV Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicle of BAE Systems
Marked for replacement are between 2,000 and 3,000 assorted vehicles, many dubbed "battle taxis" because of their relatively light armor and potential unsuitability for some modern warfare scenarios, industry analysts said.
Congressional research data suggests the AMPV aims to replace M-113 personnel carriers, still in service in a variety of support capacities in Armored Brigade Combat Teams, defense-aerospace.com said.
The Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicle (AMPV) is the proposed United States Army program for replacement of the M113 Family of Vehicles (FOV) to mitigate current and future capability gaps in force protection, mobility, reliability, and interoperability by mission role variant within the Heavy Brigade Combat Team (HBCT).
The AMPV will have multiple variants tailored to specific mission roles within HBCT. Mission roles are as follows: General Purpose, Medical Evacuation, Medical Treatment, Mortar Carrier, and Mission Command. AMPV is a vehicle integration program. Existing Mission Equipment Packages (MEPs) will be transferred into the AMPV platforms where applicable.
U.S. Soldiers from 1st Battalion, 5th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, fire the M120 Mortar system out of a M113 Armored Personal Carrier (APC) on Forward Operating Base Taji, Baghdad, Iraq, April 25, 2009.
While M-113s no longer serve as infantry fighting vehicles, five variants of the M-113 are used as command and control vehicles, general purpose vehicles, mortar carriers, and medical treatment and evacuation vehicles. An estimated 3,000 of these M-113 variants are currently in service, defense-aerospace.com said.
The AMPV is intended to be a "vehicle integration" or non-developmental program, apparently to avoid controversy and to forestall failure in the acquisition effort.
Candidate vehicles chosen by the army will be either existing vehicles or modified existing vehicle but not vehicles to be specially designed.
With the United States Army said to favor a single supplier for the whole replacement program, an existing vehicle adapted to its purpose will be easier to buy than a vehicle to be developed under a modernization program.
Exactly how many vehicles will be bought remains unclear. Defense News said the Army wants to buy 2,097 AMPVs over 13 years costing roughly $1.8 million apiece. Other reports cited up to 3,000 vehicles earmarked for replacement.
The Army plans to award a five-year engineering and manufacturing development contract in May 2014 to one contractor, which will manufacture 29 vehicles for government testing, followed by a three-year low-rate initial production contract starting in 2020, Defense News said.
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