Navistar Defense LLC reported a new contract to install updated MRAP chassis systems for the U.S Army Contracting Command, a $21-million assignment that follows an earlier, $880-million order from the U.S. Marine Corps System Command to upgrade more than 2,700 of the International MaxxPro Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles with Navistar’s “rolling chassis solution.” The new award also includes engineering changes, supplies, and services.
The MRAP is an all-terrain vehicle specially armored and equipped for combat-zone duty, and the rolling chassis package aims to improve the vehicle's off-road capability with the addition of an independent suspension, a Navistar MaxxForce 9.3 engine, 570-amp alternator, and driveline. Navistar Defense noted it has supplied the U.S. Defense Dept. with almost 9,000 MaxxPro vehicles, and anticipates further enhancements and reuse options for the entire fleet of 32,000 vehicles.
The new contract is part of a series of awards from the U.S Army Contracting Command aimed at improving existing defense assets for future missions. Retrofits will be conducted at Navistar’s West Point, Miss., operation, and should be completed by June 1.
"We are focused on increasing the capabilities of our existing fleet with minimal impact to defense funding," stated Navistar Defense president Archie Massicotte. "The vehicle reset line we established for this installation work can also be utilized to restore older vehicles to like-new condition. Therefore, we are poised and ready to reset vehicles returning from deployment – either here at our facility or overseas."
Navistar Defense noted that the vehicles remaining after the retrofits can be matched with an armored cab and returned to service, or restored as commercial flatbed trucks by adding a standard cab (at roughly one third of the cost of a new commercial vehicle.) Alternatively, a recovery vehicle and a utility truck are other variants that can be produced on this “building-block model.”