The U.S. Dept. of Defense awarded a new, $119.7-million project to BAE Systems to proceed with long-range procurement for the U.S. Army’s Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicles program, a defense program that aims to replace the M113 armored personnel carriers that have been the standard combat vehicles for U.S. soldiers for over five decades. The new award follows a $245.6-million assignment to BAE Systems in March, also funding the ongoing production of those new vehicles.
According to reports, the U.S. Army has approved full-rate production of the AMPV, though the production volume remains undetermined due to defense budget debates.
The U.S. Congress in 2019 approved ‘low-rate initial production’ of 72 AMPVs by BAE Systems Land & Armaments L.P., York, Penn., which is a general purpose vehicle with variant models for troop transport, mission command, mortar carrier, medical evacuation, and medical treatment. Qualification testing and live-fire testing were initiated more than four years ago.
The first vehicles were delivered to an Army brigade combat team earlier this year, and BAE Systems has been anticipating an order for full-rate production since Q1 2023, which reportedly would constitute a manufacturing rate of 16 vehicles per month.
The U.S. Army’s FY 2024 budget reduced its earlier request for AMPVs from $682.4 million (131 vehicles) to $555 million (91 vehicles.) However, according to Defense News citing Army sources, BAE Systems could be contracted to produce a total of 154 AMPVs to replace hundreds of M113s that will be delivered to Ukraine, using supplemental budgeting to cover the cost of that military aid as well as production of replacement vehicles.