Singapore’s ST Kinetics will partner with Virginia-based integrator Science Applications International Corp (SAIC) and Belgium’s CMI Defence to rapidly develop combat vehicle prototypes for the US Army’s Mobile Protected Firepower (MPF) requirement.
Based on ST Kinetics’ Next Generation Armored Fighting Vehicle (NGAFV) chassis and CMI Defence’s Cockerill Series 3105 turret currently in production, SAIC will compete for an Engineering and Manufacturing Development (EMD) contract to build prototypes that incorporate a lightweight combat vehicle design while still providing mobility and lethality for Army units. Such a vehicle will enable freedom of movement and action, specifically for restrictive, urban operations but tailorable for full-spectrum combat environments.
“Our NGAFV is an advanced system that is fully digitalised, highly mobile and developed to support networked knowledge-based warfighting,” said Lee Shiang Long, president of ST Kinetics. “A fleet of seven prototypes had been developed and robustly tested over several years…as the [vehicle] will be in production soon, [our solution] brings minimal technical risk and a robust supply chain to the MPF program.”
SAIC’s entry into the MPF competition builds on continued momentum in combat vehicle modernisation, to include the company’s recent collaboration with the Detroit Automotive Technologies Consortium (DATC) and the US Army Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC) to assist in the development of the next-generation combat vehicle-experimental prototype (NGCV-EP).
SAIC’s experience in modernizing combat and tactical vehicles includes Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles for the Army, and Amphibious Combat Vehicles 1.1 (ACV) and Amphibious Assault Vehicles with Survivability Upgrades (AAV-SU) for the US Marine Corps.
“By marrying ST Kinetics’ chassis with CMI Defence’s turret, SAIC can deliver a reliable vehicle that gives soldiers a new capability in combat environments,” Jim Scanlon, SAIC senior vice president and general manager of the Defense Systems Customer Group
The US Army has requested $36 million in FY 2018 for MPF. The service had earlier received $9.6 million in FY 2017 which it used to assess the “operational effectiveness, suitability, and lifecycle cost” to meet requirements contained within MPF’s initial development documents.