GM Defense delivers the first infantry military vehicle to the U.S. Army

GM Defense 649 ISV U.S. Army
GM Defense 649 ISV
Militarymedia.net - U.S. Army on Tuesday at General Motors Proving Grounds in Milford received the first Infantry Troop Vehicle made by GM Defense LLC, just 120 days after winning the contract.

GM formed GM Defense in 2017. This vehicle was the first major contract won by a wholly owned subsidiary and is key to GM Defense's future growth. This shows the United States government how GM Defense can use GM technology in military vehicles.

"One hundred and twenty days from contract award to delivery is a significant achievement, and I am very proud of the team for this achievement," said David Albritton, president of GM Defense. "We are leveraging General Motors' outstanding engineering prowess and manufacturing capabilities to bring transformative solutions to the military vehicle market."

The Infantry Squad Vehicle (ISV) is based on the 2020 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 pickup and uses 90% of commercial components. It is designed for fast ground mobility and carries an infantry squad of nine soldiers through the battlefield.

GM Defense will manufacture 649 ISVs, which will be delivered in fiscal year 2024, and will support production of up to 2,065 vehicles due to additional authorizations during the eight-year contract.

A launch point
GM Defense will make the first 27 ISVs at Proving Grounds. Production will then be moved to a facility in Mooresville, North Carolina, where even higher volumes can be achieved.

The ongoing development of GM's fuel cells led to the creation of GM Defense as a way to explore applying technology intended for the commercial car market to be a potential solution for the Department of Defense.

In June, the US Army awarded GM Defense a contract for the ISV. The contract is worth $ 214.3 million. GM Defense defeated the other two finalists.

Tim Herrick, GM's vice president of global product development, said the ISV contract was "only the beginning of GM's support" for GM Defense programs.
GM Defense 649 ISV U.S. Army
Albritton said the ISV "represents a fantastic platform" for expanding business to other parts of government and even foreign government businesses.

Good Ford Motor Co. nor Fiat Chrysler Automobiles does not have a similar business arm dedicated to the military. But both do general business with the government, including the military.

In October 2019, AM General, a light tactical vehicle manufacturer, partnered with the Jeep brand to launch a light tactical concept vehicle. The Jeep Gladiator Extreme Military-Grade Truck (XMT) is the first stage of the light military truck collaboration. FCA says production of the XMT Gladiator has not yet started.

GM Defense is eyeing at least three more bids that will pay off heavily if GM wins them.

GM Defense of the future
As Free Press reported earlier this year, one of these is the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle, which is being produced with Oshkosh Defense, a tactical vehicle maker. The contract was submitted in mid-June.

The Joint Light Tactical Vehicle or JLTV is a new and improved High Mobility Multi Purpose Wheeled Vehicle, more commonly called a Humvee. The JLTV is a tough display truck that offers superior crew protection and improved performance compared to the older Humvee.

The military wants 49,099 JLTVs, Jeff Ryder, vice president of growth and strategy for GM Defense, told Free Press in an earlier report. Oshkosh built the first 15,000, but there will be contracts to build another 34,099, said Ryder, "and that's the part we're seeing."

GM Defense is conducting a review to determine if they have what it takes to win the JLTV contract. The Army's request for proposals is due in February 2022. It is expected to award the contract in September of that year, Ryder said.

This is a monumental contract worth $ 14.5 billion that must be paid over 10 years when the vehicle is delivered.

The most advantageous targets for GM Defense are the Department of Defense's tactical and combat vehicle areas. But GM Defense is also considering working with other government agencies, such as the Department of Homeland Security, and even foreign militaries.

On Tuesday, Albritton said GM Defense continues to have a strong interest in the JLTV program and is pursuing it, but he also said, "The advanced reconnaissance vehicle for the US Marine Corps is another program we will consider."

But, he said, "We're not just looking at the basic system." Albritton said it is possible for GM Defense to work with the Navy on underwater tactical vehicles and the Air Force could use the batteries from the Chevrolet Bolt electric car to power the electric power units on the ground.

GM Defense believes it can secure at least $ 20 billion in contracts in the future. The billions will flow directly into GM's earnings before interest and taxes, providing the automaker with diversified revenue and additional funding for researching its electric and autonomous vehicle technology beyond relying on sales from pickups and SUVs.
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