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Oshkosh to upgrade baseline configuration of JLTVs for U.S. Army


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Defense Blog  /  April 17, 2019

A statement from the U.S. Department of Defense claims that the specialty vehicle manufacturer Oshkosh Corp. to upgrade baseline configuration of Joint Light Tactical Vehicle Family of Vehicles (JLTVs) for U.S. Army.

The defense arm of Oshkosh Corp. has received a $19.6 million contract modification to incorporate Engineering Change Proposal into the baseline configuration of the JLTVs.

The modification, announced Tuesday by the Department of Defense, provides to incorporate engineering change proposal of capsule roof hatch for the JLTVs. Work will be performed in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, with an estimated completion date of April 30, 2021.

The newest family of light tactical vehicles, or JLTV, developed to replace ageing HMMWVs currently in service with U.S. infantry forces including the Army and the U.S. Marine Corps.

As previously reported, the JLTV family of vehicles comes in different variants—general purpose, heavy guns carrier, utility, and close combat weapons carrier—all providing protected, sustained, networked mobility that balances payload, performance and protection across the full range of military operations.

The JLTV family of vehicles is designed to provide a leap ahead in protection, payload, and performance to meet the warfighters needs. The JLTV is the first vehicle purpose-built for battlefield communications networks and provides increased readiness for 21st century warfare.

The Army, lead for the JLTV portfolio, plans to purchase some 49,000 JLTVs while the Marine Corps plans to purchase 9,000. To date, Oshkosh has produced more than 2,000 JLTVs and has delivered more than 1,600 JLTVs to the U.S. Army and Marine Corps.

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The Army has a plan for China, and it’s bad news for JLTV and the Chinook

Defense News  /  April 17, 2019

WASHINGTON — Legacy programs built for the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq are looking less like vital capabilities and more like bill-payers for the Army, as the service transitions towards a focus on conflict with Russia and China.

In a small Tuesday roundtable with reporters, Army Secretary Mark Esper fielded a number of questions about the future of the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle and the CH-47 Block II Chinook, a line of inquiry he tied into a recent meeting between Army leadership and officials at U.S. Indo-Pacific Command.

According to Esper, the Army reached out to INDOPACOM leadership to request a meeting, which eventually happened in Hawaii, in order to discuss how the service is developing capabilities to match up with China.

The idea, Esper said, is to make sure that as INDOPACOM head Adm. Phil Davidson is developing war plans, he “takes into consideration what the Army anticipates bringing to the table.”

Asked which capabilities he sees as vital to the Pacific, Esper identified long range precision fires as “front and center,” which would be used to “hold at bay” Chinese ships. He then added future vertical lift, air and missile defense, and modernized networks as other key areas they briefed INDOPACOM on.

Those capabilities are “something that he needs to know about and he needs to know our thinking where that is in the modernization timeline and everything. So as he thinks about his war plans for the out years, he can calculate those in. and by the same token, it’s an exchange — he can tell us ‘here’s what I’m looking for, here’s what I think I would need,’ and we can adjust our plans as well.”

That discussion happens as the service intends to cut the planned JLTV buy and end procurement of the CH-47 Block II for conventional forces, something Esper said was a direct result of the Army leaning into the National Defense Strategy.

Those two vehicles were designed and procured in “the context of Afghanistan and Iraq,” and hence just not as relevant anymore, Esper said.

“Why the [CH-47s]? Got to carry a heavier payload and fly higher in a hotter climate. What was the heavier payload? JLTV. What drove JLTV? IEDs in Afghanistan and Iraq,” Esper argued. “In many ways they were designed for a different conflict. Doesn’t mean we won’t use them in future conflicts, but now my emphasis has to be on rebuilding my armor, rebuilding my fighting vehicles, having aircraft that can penetrate Russian and Chinese air defenses, that can shoot down Russian and Chinese drones and missiles and helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft.

“We’re in this transition period and some folks are caught in that transition, and that’s what we’re up against.”

More specifically, Esper said there were “no” plans to re-look at the CH-47 decision, and acknowledged that the JLTV total figure is a bit of a moving target.

“We are certainly cutting the total number” of JLTV procurement, which had previously been set at 49,000, Esper said. “I know that much. But whether it settles out, finals out right here, today, I can’t tell you. In five years, I could maybe have a different number for you.”

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