Big Decisions on MRAP Fleet Due in December
Kevin Fahey, the Army’s program executive officer for combat service support, said that his office is putting the finishing touches on a report to be briefed to the Army’s vice chief of staff in December—after some sort of national election is finished—that will offer guidelines on how to sustain the MRAP fleet over the long haul.
The Army is actually working on two MRAP-related studies, one concerning the size of the fleet moving forward, and one “to make a decision on what’s the future of MRAPs,” Fahey said.
There have already been a few decisions made about the fleet: The RG-33 has been turned into a medium route clearance vehicle, for example, and the Marine Corps has decided to go exclusively with the Cougar MRAP.
Over the long term, Fahey added, the lighter, Oshkosh-made MATV will most likely be the enduring MRAP platform that will carry soldiers to the fight, while most of the heavier MRAPs “will probably find themselves in prepositioned stocks so that when we go somewhere where we need an IED resistant vehicle” they will already be in the region. “But I think the [MATV] will find a mission and role,” he said. The MATV won’t compete with the developmental JLTV Fahey was quick to caution, in part because the JLTV is being designed to incorporate the Army’s WIN-T battlefield network, which Army leadership has repeatedly called its number one developmental priority. The MATV is being outfitted with the network as well, but it wasn’t designed to carry it, and installation is expensive he said.