Friday, September 25, 2015

US Marines Mull Replacement for Osprey-Carried Vehicle

Thanks to Jonathan for the link!

via Defense News.
On Sept. 14, the Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory concluded a limited objective experiment for Camp Pendleton and Fort Hunter Liggett in California, which was meant to define the need. Though originally designed for light-strike missions, such a vehicle is also considered a contender for logistics and casualty evacuation missions.
The lab and Company B, 1st Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, executed an experiment that included four different patrol lanes of various lengths, on difficult terrain and in complicated scenarios to test the Marines and the ITVs, according to a USMC announcement.
Capt. Sean Leahy, the commanding officer of Company B, said the vehicles were ineffective as a strike vehicle, but worked well as a logistics vehicle by removing a lot of weight from Marines' backs.
"The biggest benefit an ITV-style vehicle is going to bring to the infantry community is not in a fighting role or a strike role," Leahy said in the announcement. "A vehicle like this should be used as a logistics asset that can lighten the load of the individual Marines which in turn makes them more alert and in the long run more combat effective."

Hope that Captain doesn't get into too much trouble.  He let the cat out of the bag and basically invalidated the "reason for being" that Marine planners have for this vehicle.

Dreaming of coming in on MV-22's, dropping off 100 or more miles from the objective, motoring in and then zooming back out is the fantasy.  The reality?

Just piggy back off the US Army, buy Polaris RZR's (plus lots of trailers) and be done with it.  It is as it always has been.  A utility vehicle to haul stuff and nothing more....certainly not a Fast Attack Vehicle that the USMC's been trying to field for more than 50 years.  Check out the pics below.

The Mini Mite.  Basically a cut down jeep developed during the infancy of USMC helicopter operations.  Designed to be transported by the UH-34 but abandoned when more powerful helicopters were introduced.

The original Fast Attack Vehicle...based off the "old Jeep" during the 80's during the Rapid Response Force era.  HUMMWVs were coming online and the idea of transporting a vehicle internally was especially appealing...

The Mercedes Benz model Fast Attack Vehicle.  Recon and FAST company got most of these....this was the first vehicle that raised the ire of Congress over cost...interestingly enough I've never seen these being sold to the public after their service.  Effectiveness?  I have no idea but they didn't serve long.
Of course all of the above doesn't include research projects that the USMC was engaging in at the time.

What research vehicle stood out to me?  The "Helicopter Transportable Multi-Mission Platform"...check it out below....sidenote; this was the vehicle that put Mullen Works on my radar for the first time...

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