Textron Systems Marine and Land Systems is looking launch its Survivable Combat Tactical Vehicle (SCVT), possibly as early as 2016.
There are plans for Ukraine and possibly Colombia to become launch customers for the vehicle. The company told Shephard at AUSA in October that both countries had received sample vehicles.
The SCTV is a development of the ubiquitous but lightweight High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV), well used by European and Middle East militaries, and has been redesigned from the ground up to enhance crew survivability and data-links.
The UAE has also been identified as a prospective customer but any deal has been described as ‘not as advanced’ as the other two, according to Textron officials.
Speaking to Shephard, Jonathan Dalrymple, VP business development at Marine and Land Systems, said the HMMWV was never designed with the survivability of a specific ambush and mine-resistant vehicle, given the roles it was expected to carry out.
A staged upgrade programme first sees the legacy HMMWV delivered to local contractors who then refurbish the vehicle and add to capsule protection and any procured components, before final assembly and delivery.
‘We will do [the modifications] in country. The model we are looking at deploying in the host country and not to do it in the US,’ said Dalrymple.
Thousands were purchased in the past by countries in the Middle East like the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Iraq. Some existing customers are operating in conflict zones and wars in Yemen and Syria.
The SCTV was not driven by former customers however, rather a former US special forces soldier who had seen the devastating effects IEDs and asymmetric warfare had on the thin-skinned four-wheeler.
Unlike the HMMWV, the SCTV has a monocock crew compartment, shaped sides and belly plate armour. The vehicle has been ‘stripped down to the frame’ in order to achieve these enhancements, which Dalrymple says make the SCTV more survivable than an MRAP.
Vehicle performance kits include a mobility, engine, cooling and braking packages. Safety enhancements will see roll-over crush protection added, the isolating of fuel cells from the crew compartment, fire-retardant insulation panels fitted, an external battery compartment, and an improved air conditioner.
The roof will support the weight and function of most gunner protection kits and weapon systems currently in use, according to Textron Systems.
A modular upgrade approach enables all 11-series HMMWVs and select 10- and 9-series vehicles compatibility with the five primary kit selections. Future developments could include using strong but lightweight materials to reduce the overall weight of the vehicle.