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American Rheinmetall Vehicles and GM Defense Team to Pursue U.S. Army’s Common Tactical Truck Program

Wednesday, August 17th, 2022

American Rheinmetall Vehicles and GM Defense Team to Pursue U.S. Army’s Common Tactical Truck Program
American Rheinmetall Vehicles (Sterling Heights, MI), a leading developer of tactical wheeled and tracked combat vehicles and systems has formed a strategic collaboration with GM Defense LLC (Washington, DC), to compete in the U.S. Army’s Common Tactical Truck (CTT) program. The CTT program seeks to identify a replacement platform for the Army’s Family of Heavy Tactical Vehicles.

The Army expects to execute multiple Prototype Projects before determining whether to proceed to initial production that could entail purchase of approximately 5,700 vehicles at a value of around $5 billion. A Request for Prototype Proposals for the first phase was issued in late June with an expected Contract Award in December of 2022.

Rheinmetall, with its subsidiary Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles (RMMV), is a global leader in tactical military truck development and manufacturing. The Group’s HX family of trucks have been sold to 20 customers globally including an active Allied user group consisting of Germany, Australia, United Kingdom, Austria, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, and Denmark. Rheinmetall recently unveiled its HX3, next-generation series of truck with advances in power, mobility, Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS), and an open systems architecture with pathways to hybrid technology incorporation, leader follower driving, and autonomous operations. The militarized HX3 series incorporates substantial commercial technologies reflecting Rheinmetall’s joint venture with MAN Truck & Bus which streamlines logistics and sustainment burdens and provides benefits in vehicle upgrades. An Americanized HX3 forms the basis of what the American Rheinmetall Vehicles and GM Defense team will offer the Army in the first phase of the CTT program. Combined with an open architecture, the commercial backbone of the HX3 will support persistent modernization and allow for increases in capability as technologies mature. This will reduce obsolescence issues and overall lifecycle costs.

GM Defense is a rapidly expanding, wholly-owned subsidiary of global technology powerhouse General Motors (GM) – one of the largest automotive producers in the world, delivering 2.2 million vehicles in 2021 alone, and remains the largest commercial provider of military vehicles in history. As GM’s purpose-built government-facing entity, GM Defense will bring its formidable manufacturing capabilities and technological excellence to the CTT team, leveraging GM’s innovation and portfolio of commercial technologies to advance customer capabilities. Having been selected to deliver the Infantry Squad Vehicle (ISV) to the Army under an Other Transaction Authority (OTA) contract, GM Defense understands rapid prototyping, agile design and engineering, and rapid delivery.

The CTT Program is a rapid prototyping effort that uses a middle tier acquisition strategy and OTAs to enable the Army to quickly procure and test tactical truck prototypes to replace its family of heavy tactical trucks. The Army is seeking a modern platform featuring advanced driver safety systems, increased off-road mobility, cybersecurity, machine learning, artificial intelligence, improved survivability, and fuel efficiency among other emerging technologies. The program will enable the Army to replace legacy vehicles like the Palletized Load System (PLS), Heavy Expanded Mobility Tactical Truck (HEMTT), M915 Line Haul Tractor, and other platforms in the current heavy and medium tactical wheeled fleet. A truck with maximum commercial elements, able to perform military missions, and that can bring commonality amongst mission roles are top priorities for the Army in the program.

“American Rheinmetall Vehicles is a committed partner to the Army, bringing next-generation capability, technology and competition to high priority Army modernization programs like CTT. GM Defense shares our commitment, and together our team will provide a transformational truck to support the Army and its Soldiers,” said Matthew Warnick, Managing Director for American Rheinmetall Vehicles. “General Motors has a century of experience supporting the Department of Defense with a remarkable heritage in design, engineering, and manufacturing. GM Defense continues that heritage with the ability to rapidly develop and deploy advanced technologies, bringing an important capability to the American Rheinmetall Vehicles team and our exceptional CTT offering,” said Warnick.

“On the heels of successfully delivering the ISV to our Army customer, GM Defense is excited to join American Rheinmetall Vehicles on the CTT program to deliver another exceptional mobility solution for our Soldiers,” said Steve duMont, President of GM Defense. “This strategic collaboration enables GM Defense to continue showcasing our advanced capabilities, leveraging GM’s innovation and proven commercial technology. With American Rheinmetall Vehicles’ HX3 as the starting point, I’m confident that together we will deliver a winning solution that meets or exceeds the Army’s requirements and provides a platform for growth and technology insertion to support our warfighters well into the future,” continued duMont.

HX3 Common Tactical Truck (HX3-CTT)
Technology for the future: The HX3-CTT features an advanced, interchangeable protected cab design, Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS), and drive by wire operation. The new open systems electrical architecture allows rapid integration of leader follower and autonomous capabilities that focus on protecting our most valuable combat asset – the Soldier.

Common Platforms and parts to support a family of vehicles: The HX3-CTT is the new, next-gen variant of the globally successful HX family of military-off-the-shelf tactical trucks. It possesses an extremely high level of commonality and modularity across variants: cargo, load handling systems, tankers, and line haul tractors. With an HX family that can scale from 4×4 to 10×10, the HX can meet any military need.

Commerciality in its DNA: The HX3-CTT leverages best-in-class advances in commercial truck technology, safety, fuel efficiency, and emissions reduction. Ruggedized for the stresses of military service, the HX family provides an “off the shelf” capability. This commercial backbone reduces obsolescence risk/cost, expands parts availability, and reduces sustainment demands.

Allied Interoperability: The HX family of trucks have been sold to 20 customers globally including an active Allied user group consisting of Germany, Australia, United Kingdom, Austria, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, and Denmark, creating common global supply chains, training opportunities, and integrated operations among key allies operating around the world.

Fort Leonard Wood Prepares for Arrival of Electric Vehicles

Wednesday, August 10th, 2022

FORT LEONARD WOOD, Mo. — Anyone driving around Fort Leonard Wood these days can spot one pretty quickly and easily, and it seems like there are more and more every day. Electric vehicles, or EVs, are not the future — they are here — and not just the privately-owned ones.

Government-owned vehicles are going electric as well — Fort Leonard Wood received two EVs last month, and more are on the way.

The electric vans in the Logistic Readiness Center inventory are part of the Army’s latest directive of electrifying its non-tactical vehicle fleet. Executive Order 14057 — Catalyzing Clean Energy Industries and Jobs Through Federal Sustainability — requires the Department of Defense to transition its non-tactical vehicles to a 100% zero-emission vehicle fleet, including 100% of light-duty acquisitions by 2027, and 100% of medium- and heavy-duty acquisitions by 2035, said Installation Energy Manager Allen Simpson with the Directorate of Public Works.

Fort Leonard Wood maintains approximately 540 vehicles that meet the definition of non-tactical, and the Directorate of Public Works — or DPW — is working out ways to keep those vehicles charged up and ready for use every day.

“DPW’s responsibility is to assure charging stations are installed ahead of the arrival of the electrical vehicles,” he said. “We must be ahead of the demand for them.”

Because of the lower mileage government-owned vehicles are typically driven — making it less likely they will need to be charged every day — Simpson said the plan will most-likely involve having one charging station for every four to six vehicles, and he expects to see the first seven charging stations up and running within a month or two.

To meet the goal of installing that many stations here, Simpson said DPW has employed a unique solution. They are privatizing the ownership of the charging stations under the already-existing electrical distribution contract — doing this has several advantages.

“First of all, we save on manpower of managing the purchases, operation and maintenance, and we don’t have to worry about life-cycle replacements,” he said. “We will simply pay a monthly fee, just as we do for maintaining our other utility distribution systems.”

The installation’s preparations for an electrified fleet of government-owned vehicles — and the infrastructure to charge them all — is just one piece of a larger energy plan primarily focused on resiliency and the provision of a cleaner, more sustainable environment, Simpson said.

One way DPW is doing that is by working with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to install two combined heat and power plants here, Simpson said.

The implementation of combined heat and power, also commonly known as cogeneration, increases energy efficiency by allowing heat that would normally be lost in power generation to be recovered to provide heating and/or cooling, which cuts costs, Simpson said.

“The efficiency comes because we are capturing the heat that’s produced in that process and putting that heat into a boiler plant,” he said. “So, we’re not having to buy that natural gas to heat the boilers. The natural gas offsets itself while we are able to produce our own electricity.”

When they are completed, Simpson said the plants will give Fort Leonard Wood the ability to produce about seven percent of its peak-power demand.

Another newer initiative is a collaboration between DPW and the USACE Prime Power School, which moved to Fort Leonard Wood from Fort Belvoir, Virginia, in 2010. The school has the mission of training service members to install, operate and maintain certain types of electrical power plants.

Leaders from these agencies, along with other stakeholders, are working together to address energy resiliency by looking into the possibility of utilizing the expertise and power-generation capabilities of the Prime Power School should the installation ever experience an electrical energy crisis, Simpson said.

Chief Warrant Officer 5 Willie Gadsden, Prime Power School commander and deputy commandant, said the Army prime power production specialists who graduate from the school are uniquely qualified to assist.

“We have a depth of knowledge that could quickly and efficiently get after that particular problem set,” he said. “It is absolutely a great partnership.”

Simpson said these projects — and others — ultimately aid in Army readiness.

“The goal is to develop and maintain programs and projects that provide each installation the means to stave off or survive a utility emergency,” he said. “The expectation I have for Fort Leonard Wood is to prepare ourselves, so that we can adapt and recover without loss to any mission or support function.”

By Brian Hill, Fort Leonard Wood Public Affairs Office

US Army Awards MATBOCK, LLC of Virginia Beach, VA, $6.9M pOTA to Develop a Joint Light Tactical Vehicle Hybrid Electric Vehicle (JLTV HEV)

Tuesday, August 2nd, 2022

Virginia Beach, VA: MATBOCK is an industry leader in bringing paradigm shifting technologies to the market and is excited to announce this partnership with the U.S. Army Rapid Capabilities and Critical Technologies Office (RCCTO) to develop a Joint Light Tactical Vehicle Hybrid Electric Vehicle (JLTV HEV) prototype that will utilize a M1278A1 Heavy Gun Carrier JLTV as the base platform.

In March 2022, the RCCTO awarded MATBOCK a $6.9M, including options, pOTA (Prototype Other Transaction Authority) to develop and deliver a JLTV HEV.  The primary purpose of this project is to validate or negate the feasibility of prototyping a tactical Hybrid Electric Vehicle (HEV). The goals of the project are to increase the overall automotive performance and operational range, increase the availability of on-board and off platform power, and increase the vehicle’s overall operational effectiveness by adding additional capabilities.

In addition to being able to generate additional power, the JLTV HEV will have a new capability over the non-hybrid JLTV variants by being able to operate in a ‘silent mobility mode’ that only utilizes the battery pack, increasing the silent watch capability over the non-hybrid JLTV variant.

MATBOCK has set up a new 4,000 sq-ft space directly attached to their existing space dedicated to military hybrid-electric vehicle efforts to include the JLTV HEV. MATBOCK has nearly 30 people dedicated to making this project successful. At the helm from the MATBOCK side is Mike Pilotte. Mike is an Armor Officer in the North Carolina National Guard and an experienced Project Manager having most recently completed a successful Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II with the Special Operations Command (SOCOM).

MATBOCK will be pushing past current limits of battery and automotive technology integration and engineering results with these performance enhancements, but MATBOCK is known for tackling tough challenges like this. “Without a doubt this will be the most complex project MATBOCK has faced in our 12 years in business, but we have the right team and core technologies to produce a successful outcome.” said MATBOCK’s Co-Founder & President Zach Steinbock.

To learn more about MATBOCK and our extensive product line, check out or email us at [email protected]

GM Defense to Provide Battery Electric Vehicle to U.S. Army for Analysis and Demonstration

Wednesday, July 20th, 2022

WASHINGTON, D.C. — GM Defense, a subsidiary of General Motors, was selected by the U.S. Army to provide a battery electric vehicle for analysis and demonstration. GM Defense will leverage the GMC HUMMER EV, featuring GM’s Ultium Platform, to meet the U.S. Army’s requirement for a light to heavy duty battery electric vehicle to support reduced reliance on fossil fuels both in the operational and garrison environments.

“This award showcases GM Defense’s ability to leverage the best battery electric technology in the commercial marketplace,” said Steve duMont, president of GM Defense. “With access to GM’s advanced technologies, GM Defense is able to provide proven commercial technologies adapted to meet specific defense requirements and the needs of our customers.”

The GMC HUMMER EV Pickup is the world’s first and only all-electric supertruck that features a 24-module, double-stacked Ultium battery pack and zero-tailpipe emissions. The vehicle features 1,000 horsepower, 11,500 lb-ft of wheel torque and is capable of full 350 kilowatt/800-volt DC fast charging, enabling up to nearly 100 miles in 12 minutes. The GMC HUMMER EV Pickup offers 329 miles of combined driving range for Edition 1, with 0-60 mph acceleration times as quick as 3 seconds.

“Leveraging GM’s advanced technology, this demonstration will prove to our U.S. Army customer what an all-electric supertruck can do and how the underlying technology can be leveraged for future defense needs, whether on an installation or in a tactical environment,” continued duMont.

GM Defense is leveraging GM’s $35 billion investment in electric vehicle and autonomous vehicle technology to help lead global defense and government customers’ transition to a more electric, connected and autonomous future.

Army Publishes Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle (OMFV) Request for Proposal (RFP)

Wednesday, July 6th, 2022

The Army’s search for a Bradley Fighting Vehicle replacement took another step forward last week when they released a request for proposals to industry for Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle (OMFV) Phase 3 and 4 Detailed Design, Prototype Build and Test Effort.

The last phase saw five companies involved: American Rheinmetall Vehicles, BAE Systems Land and Armaments, General Dynamics Land Systems, Oshkosh Defense, and Point Blank Enterprises. As a full and open competition, this latest round opens the program to additional comers, including foreign companies.

American Rheinmetall Vehicles Lynx

No matter how many end up bidding, only three will be down-selected for phases three and four which will take place this fall. Those companies will build a minimum of seven prototype vehicles with up to four additional prototypes and well as two ballistic hulls, turrets, and armor coupons. A phase 3 and 4 contract is worth up to $903 Million.

Like the Bradley, OMFV must carry six dismounts, with a crew of two. Reportedly, the Army envisions six OMFVs per platoon, to carry a minimum of 30 soldiers total with room for enablers in addition to close combat forces within the Armored Brigade Combat Team.

While the system must be capable of optional manning, via remote control, the Army foresees that eventually, it will be capable of autonomous movement. There are currently plans to hand off autonomous target engagement to machines although ISR and target engagement sensors are already being used to look for situations of interest to alert the human-in-the-loop.

While Infantry and Armor NCOs may currently earn an Additional Skill Identifier for operations of ground robots, the service is considering development of a non-accessions MOS of 19R for CMF 11 and 19 NCOs in grades SGT – SFC to operate the suite of remotely operated capabilities currently under development.

Teaming with Mercedes-Benz and ACS: Rheinmetall Presenting Caracal Airborne Vehicle Family

Wednesday, June 15th, 2022

The Eurosatory 2022 trade fair will see the premiere of the Caracal airborne vehicle family. In partnership with Mercedes-Benz and ACS Armoured Car Systems, Rheinmetall has tailored the new versatile and highly mobile 4×4 vehicle family to the requirements of platforms for airborne or special operations units. Now the new vehicle system, designed to the highest Original Equipment Manufacturer standards, will be presented for the first time to a wider circle of professionals.

The new family of airborne Caracal vehicles is based on the latest G-class chassis for rescue and special operations. The Caracal features maximum mobility, a lightweight design and optionally mountable protection elements for countering ballistic and landmine threats. Its 249 horsepower, six-cylinder Euro III diesel engine gives the 4,900 kg vehicle a top speed of 140 km/h.

The Caracal’s compact design makes it possible to airlift up to two vehicles in the cargo hold of a CH-53K King Stallion or CH-47F Chinook transport helicopter, which can also carry it as underslung cargo.

Thanks to its unique modular design and two available wheelbases, the Caracal can be employed in a variety of roles during airborne operations – as a basic troop carrier or medical support vehicle, for example, or as supply vehicle – all on one automotive platform.

The Caracal will be ready for full-scale production starting in 2023. Rheinmetall offers full lifecycle support for a period exceeding twenty years.

Eurosatory 2022 takes place in Paris 13 to 17 June. Under the motto “Move – Sense – Strike”, Rheinmetall is showcasing part of its comprehensive range of products and activities there. Occupying an exhibition area of around 3,000 square metres, Rheinmetall’s presence this year will be its biggest ever at Eurosatory. The emphasis is on reconnaissance capabilities, networkability, mobility, survivability and lethality on the battlefields of the future. We look forward to welcoming you at Stand F241-240 in the outdoor area behind Hall 6!

GM Defense Expands Into Canada

Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

GM Defense is expanding its global strategy to Canada, leveraging the existing relationships of GM Canada along with the advanced technologies and capabilities of its parent company, General Motors, with the aim of delivering efficient and innovative solutions to international military, security and government customers.

Fully aligned with its parent company’s vision for an all-electric future, GM Defense will leverage commercial battery electric technology and recent EV manufacturing investments to help defence and government customers transition to a more electric, autonomous and connected future. GM recently announced $2B to transform both Oshawa Assembly and CAMI Assembly plant, which will become Canada’s first full-scale EV manufacturing plant. The company also announced a partnership with POSCO to build a new $500 million facility in Quebec that will process Cathode Active Materials for EV batteries. GM Defense will leverage these investments to deliver customized solutions based on commercial derivatives that enhance capabilities for defence and government customers in Canada and overseas.

Flyer 72 Ground Mobility Vehicle Featured During ISOF Capabilities Demonstration

Thursday, May 19th, 2022

Tampa, Fla. (May. 18, 2022) – The Flyer® 72- Heavy Duty (F72-HD) ground mobility vehicle continues to draw attention while on display during day three of the 2022 Special Operations Forces Industry Conference (SOFIC).

The Flyer vehicle was also featured during the International Special Forces (ISOF) Capabilities Demonstration.

Located in Booth 1605 through the end of the conference, the F72-HD is showcased with a Kongsberg Common Remotely Operated Weapon Station (CROWS II) system, .50cal machine gun, nine Javelin missiles and four M72 LAWs.

The Flyer® family of ground mobility vehicle platforms is the elite solution in the area of lightweight, all terrain wheeled tactical vehicles. With an impressive payload of more than 5,000 lbs. and a 1:1 payload-to-weight ratio, Flyer Defense vehicles are transportable both internally and externally with rotary and tilt wing aircraft. The Flyer® 72 is currently in production for the United Arab Emirates Armed Forces and in use as the USSOCOM GMV 1.1 solution and the U.S. Army A-GMV solution.