Eagle Industries

New Infantry Squad Vehicle Tested at US Army Yuma Proving Ground

There’s a new vehicle turning heads on the range at U.S. Army Yuma Proving Ground (YPG), and it will likely begin arriving in Army brigades in a matter of months.

It’s the Infantry Squad Vehicle (ISV), and it promises to give Soldiers an opportunity to arrive to a fight faster, rested, and ready.

Powered by a 2.8 liter turbo diesel engine with a six speed automatic transmission, the four-wheel drive vehicle carries up to a nine Soldier infantry unit and their heavy gear. If it looks familiar, it is because the platform is based on a commercially-available vehicle.

“About 70% is common with the Chevy Colorado ZR2, and the rest is a mixture of commercial parts that you can modify and put onto the Chevy Colorado,” said Steve Herrick, product lead for Ground Mobility Vehicles. “About 90% of this can be bought on the commercial market.”

The ISV is meant to reduce the burden on infantry Soldiers weighed down by heavy gear and faced with rugged terrain. The fast and lean ISV can be air transported into locales within theater rapidly and efficiently.

“It provides an operationally relevant vehicle for a small tactical unit to be transported to a drop off point as quickly as possible in a mission-ready state,” said Sean Lamorena, test officer. “It’s intended to be transported by means of the infantry’s rotary or fixed wing aircraft platforms.”

“This vehicle is going to help Soldiers in the Infantry Brigade Combat Teams that currently walk everywhere,” added Herrick. “It’s made to be ‘a better boot,’ a capability that allows you to effectively change how you operate.”

Right now it’s being put through its paces across the more than 200 miles of rugged road courses at YPG to ensure it functions as it should wherever in the world it could be called on to serve.

“We’re performing reliability and maintainability (RAM) testing to support the evaluation in a desert environment,” said Lamorena. “We’re also doing two performance tests at the conclusion of RAM testing.”

Over the next few months, the ISV will traverse 5,000 miles across Yuma Test Center’s rugged ranges, including sand slope mobility tests that will see it tackle a sandy 30% grade—for perspective, the steepest grade on an interstate highway in the contiguous United States is 6%. Through much of the testing, the vehicle and its driver will be joined by plastic dummies weighted with sand in the vehicle’s remaining seats.

“We up-weight the vehicle to its operational weight expectation,” said Isaac Rodriguez, team leader in the Combat Automotive Systems Division. “We also install a data acquisition system that monitors GPS and the vital signs of the vehicle.”

During testing, simulated missions take the vehicle across road courses featuring various terrain conditions, from paved to gravel, to punishing desert washboard that would severely rattle a vehicle without four wheel drive. As they traverse these roads, test vehicle operators continually verify performance of all the platform’s performance.

“Yuma provides the capability of extreme weather differences, as well as a desert terrain,” said Herrick. “We can’t get those things that Yuma provides at other testing locations. The distances travelled on the courses and the weather conditions really help here.”

The rising temperatures as spring approaches will also help the testing.

“We’ll take advantage of the hot temperatures to execute cooling performance of the vehicle,” said Rodriguez. “We’ll load the vehicle up and verify that it is able to maintain its proper operating temperatures.”

Though the vehicle is manufactured by General Motors and the company’s desert proving ground is co-located at YPG, there are currently no plans to utilize their road courses in tests of the ISV.

“We have the capability to do so, but based on the scope of testing for this vehicle it isn’t necessary,” said Rodriguez. “If the customer added a requirement that would need to be done at that facility, we would certainly entertain that idea.”

Eventually, the Army intends to field 59 ISVs to each brigade, beginning with brigades within the 82nd Airborne Division in May. The testing completed at YPG is an important element of the success of this rapid adoption and deployment of the vehicle.

By Mark Schauer

21 Responses to “New Infantry Squad Vehicle Tested at US Army Yuma Proving Ground”

  1. ray forest says:

    12 squads (wps sqd Included) in a Company, 8 line companies in 1st Brigade. 96 line squads in 1st Brigade and 59 vehicles. Not everyone is getting out of walking lol.

  2. ray forest says:

    12 Squads (WPNs included) in a line company. 8 Line companies in 1st brigade. 96 line squads in 1st BDE and only 59 vehicles. Not everybody it getting out of walking lol

  3. John Festus says:

    12 Squads (WPNs included) in a line company. 8 Line companies in 1st brigade. 96 line squads in 1st BDE and only 59 vehicles. Not everybody it getting out of walking lol

  4. Chris says:

    Cover-less vehicles look cool; like something straight out of a video game. Until you need to put an entire commo suite and other sensitive electronics in that get exposed to the elements and break.

    • Sommerbiwak says:

      That is why the Polaris Razr at SOCOM have tarp roofs now. And not getting rain on the soldiers’ heads is also good idea to keep them healthy. So why did they do away with a simple tarp on these ISV things? Just like with the old WW2 Jeeps or the MUTT or the early HMMWVs just take off the doors and roof if you do not need them at the moment.

      • Bill says:

        Just wait until they actually use these things and someone decides they need to up-armor them

  5. Adam says:

    Bro that’s a Warthog from Halo. Contract coming in hot.

  6. Gerg the Intreped says:

    Wow so how is AKM fire and RPGs going to figure when tear-assing round in this souped up golf buggy? Any gadgetry going to stop a lame ass dirty insurgent with a PKM that never quits from laying into 5 million dollars of warm bodies weapons and gadgets?
    Or maybe it’s meant to be used on unarmed civilian ‘runners’ in the Homeland lol.

    • SSD says:

      We won World War Two in Jeeps. Speed and mobility are security.

      • Jaabdad says:

        We had a much higher tolerance for casualties during WW II. We lose a few of these dune buggies to mines or IEDs and they’re gonna be screaming for up-armor packages in Congress.

        • SSD says:

          No, we won’t. They won’t accept them. If they wanted the ability Armor, they could have purchased GMV 1.1, which encountered huge program changes in order to accept armor.

          These are going to airborne forces who don’t have armored vehicles. This gives them mobility when they currently have none.

          • Jaabdad says:

            Congress will mandate without understanding, just like they did with the M4 trials. It’s irresistible to elected officials to “fix” military issues so they can run for re-election on their record. Program intent will get flucked out of existence, which is fine as long as a Rep or Sen can claim they saved “just one life.”

            • SSD says:

              Physics is a thing. That is the lowest bidder pickup. It won’t accept armor.

              • Sal says:

                So what is the advantage of this vs A-GMV?

                They both carry 9 people and are air-transportable by CH-47 and UH-60 yet the ISV has zero ballistic protection, zero protection from weather, and probably zero ability to mount any armament.

  7. Kansan! says:

    “In MY day…”

    (OK, well, uh, actually in my day I could only do 3 or 4 pushups so I was never in the service.)

  8. Bob says:

    Wow so they made an oversized gator.

    They should just buy Toyota Hilux trucks and be done with it.

    • SSD says:

      If only

      • Pete says:

        Or the IWA/ASC Hornet vehicles you covered a while back. Or hell, even just do that treatment to a Chevy ZR2 base just for American made clout. These sorts of vehicles need:
        1. 24V and NATO slave plug compatibility
        2. CTIS (preferably a nice simple dial and PSI gauge one, not a stupid FMTV push button type), and a diff locker.
        3. Litter compatibility – LOTS of it – Talons on the sides like the Hornet, Talons, Fox, or skedco on the hood or on the roof in a way that is quick to secure, the ability to fit a talon through the rear side entrance and just go (this is a problem with the 1.1’s)
        4. Swing-arms and well thought out stowage for 200rd 7.62 cans (like the Hornet’s replacement of pas airbag with stowage for 6 cans)
        5. A good turret – the 1.1’s is good, although the coms package gets in the way and requires a little angle grinding to fix
        6. Running boards – you need to be able to step on and off these things as a dismount – also aids in shooting ind weapon from inside cab
        7. Recovery stuff – Tow bars that can be run in the up (rhino horn) position w/out precluding the use of NATO slave plug (MATV problem) or blocking the white and/or IR lights (common problem), a winch that is not a lowest bidder piece of garbage (1.1, looking at you). Preferably that winch is also easy to clean, does not use metalic wire cable, and shields the tow line from UV rays with some kind of easily removable cover.
        8. Maintenance – make it simple for the love of God. Don’t, for example, have a vehicle which consumes a lot of coolant and requires topping up have two coolant overflow tanks, one of them being super obvious, easy to see and fill (but is the wrong one) and the other being hidden underneath a latched compartment in the cargo are where no one ever looks (but is the right one) like the 1.1. Don’t make the vehicle require a NASA booster rocket startup sequence (JLTV)
        9. These things should be simple – they should turn on like an old humvee, the battery kill switch for all the supplemental comms and electronics should be reachable from the driver seat, the gearing and controls should all be mechanical linkage.

        • AbnMedOps says:

          Good comments. I hope Grenadier is reading – perhaps they might jump into the military market sometime after they begin initial civilian deliveries next year.

          To point 3. : There is, or was, an NSN’ed Casevac kit associated with the Special Forces Medical Equipment Set, with items to secure litters to both military and non-standard aircraft and ground vehicles.

    • Pete says:

      Except a Gator has the dump bed and the KEY distinction of not requiring a TC to operate lol.