Get there, wet or dry

U.S. Marines test an am­phibi­ous ve­hi­cle boast­ing best sys­tems sur­viv­abil­ity

The Witness - Wheels - - MOTORING -

BAE Sys­tems rolled out the first of 16 Am­phibi­ous Com­bat Ve­hi­cle (ACV) 1.1 pro­to­types to the U.S. Ma­rine Corps in a cer­e­mony at the com­pany’s York, Penn­syl­va­nia, fa­cil­ity re­cently.

BAE Sys­tems’ ACV 1.1 of­fer­ing is a fully am­phibi­ous, shiplaunch­able and ship-re­cov­er­able 8x8 wheeled com­bat ve­hi­cle.

“BAE Sys­tems has a long­stand­ing legacy of sup­port­ing the Ma­rine Corps’ am­phibi­ous mis­sion,” said John Swift, the com­pany’s di­rec­tor for the ACV 1.1 pro­gramme.

“That ex­per­tise has al­lowed us to de­liver the first of these ve­hi­cles ahead of schedule.”

BAE Sys­tems’ so­lu­tion for ACV 1.1 lever­ages an ex­ist­ing plat­form pro­vided by Iveco De­fence Ve­hi­cles.

It is highly ef­fec­tive at sea when com­pared to any other am­phibi­ous ve­hi­cle in pro­duc­tion to­day, pro­vid­ing su­pe­rior land mo­bil­ity and state-of-the-art sys­tems sur­viv­abil­ity.

“As the Ma­rine Corps be­gins test­ing we are con­fi­dent that the ca­pa­bil­i­ties of these ve­hi­cles will be proven,” Swift said.

The BAE Sys­tems so­lu­tion bal­ances the Ma­rine Corps’ de­mands for an af­ford­able, pro­duc­tion-ready plat­form with added de­signs for in­creased force pro­tec­tion, wa­ter and land mo­bil­ity, lethal­ity, trans­porta­bil­ity and sur­viv­abil­ity.

BAE Sys­tems’ ACV 1.1 is equipped with a ro­bust 700HP en­gine, pro­vid­ing a sig­nif­i­cant power in­crease over the As­sault Am­phibi­ous Ve­hi­cle that is cur­rently op­er­ated by the Ma­rine Corps.

The ve­hi­cle ex­cels in all-ter­rain mo­bil­ity and has a sus­pended in­te­rior seat struc­ture for 13 embarked Marines, blast-pro­tected po­si­tions for an ad­di­tional crew of three and im­proved sur­viv­abil­ity and force pro­tec­tion over cur­rently fielded sys­tems.

The Ma­rine Corps awarded BAE Sys­tems a $103,7 mil­lion (R1,46 bil­lion) con­tract for the en­gi­neer­ing, man­u­fac­tur­ing, and devel­op­ment (EMD) phase of the ACV 1.1 pro­gramme in Novem­ber 2015, one of two EMD con­tracts is­sued.

Dur­ing this phase, the com­pany is to pro­duce 16 pro­to­types that will be tested by the Ma­rine Corps start­ing in the first quar­ter of 2017. — WR.

PHOTO: BAE SYS­TEMS

BAE Sys­tems’ ACV 1.1 so­lu­tion has com­pleted thou­sands of kilo­me­tres of mo­bil­ity test­ing and a full range of am­phibi­ous oper­a­tions, in­clud­ing demon­stra­tions of launch and re­cov­ery.

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