Medium Assault Vehicle-Light Makes Debut
By Lance M. Bacon, firstname.lastname@example.org // Northrop Grumman has unveiled its Medium Assault Vehicle – Light, its proposal for the next Special Forces combat vehicle.
But don’t be surprised if this innovative design finds a home outside the snake-eater community. Able to roll out of a CH-47, the 7,400-pound vehicle is built around a tubular roll cage and boasts a modular skeleton that allows countless configurations.
The vehicle on display at the Association of the U.S. Army annual convention here had two dozen ammo cans, a dozen five-gallon water and fuel cans, a complement of C4ISR gear and three-day rucks and weapons for the seven-man crew.
A .50 cal sat atop, though the MAV-L can handle any crew-served weapon or remotely operated platforms. Armor upgrades with A, B and C kits are quick.
A 4.4-liter CAT four-cylinder diesel engine provides 220 horsepower that can reach 80 mph on pavement and 60 mph on rough roads. But with 18 inches of wheel clearance – compared to the Hummer’s six-inch clearance – this vehicle is designed to get down and dirty.
The performance and profiles could lend the vehicle to use in long range reconnaissance missions within the 18th Airborne Corps. Top leaders have increased their demand that mobility and firepower return to a vehicle fleet that has been bogged down by armor protection.
While the MAV-L meets that desire, it must first beat five other Ground Mobility Vehicle competitors. The government has completed its testing and is expecting to select a winner by year’s end.
The winner will deliver at least 1,300 vehicles through 2020. The price must come in below $350,000 per vehicle.