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The US Military's Humvee Replacement, The L-ATV

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posted on Apr, 30 2016 @ 07:38 AM
Here's another interesting vehicle project I found looking around on the internetweb. Vehicle design is a hobby of mine, so I thought this new vehicle deserved it's own thread for some interesting discussion. L-ATV is for Light Combat Tactical All-Terrain Vehicle. This is the Army and Marine Corp's final selection from the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle development program, during which a number of defense contractors submitted vehicles for evaluation. Oshkosh Defense won the $6.7 billion contract to produce about 17,000 vehicles.
Here's a link to a Car and Driver piece on it:

The U.S. Army and Marine Corps have made their final selection for the replacement to the aging Humvee. Meet the new Light Combat Tactical All-Terrain Vehicle (L-ATV) built by Oshkosh Defense.

The decision caps off a three-year investigational phase in the military branches’ search for a new Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV), during which Oshkosh, Lockheed Martin, and AM General (maker of the long-serving Humvee) submitted 22 prototype vehicles that were each subjected to an intensive 14-month competitive test.

I also found a popsci article on it:

If it looks like a bigger, buffer descendent of the vehicle that it’s replacing, that’s fully intentional. When the Pentagon needed a way to cart troops around through dangerous terrain, it first turned to Humvees carrying more armor. This slowed down the vehicles, which were designed to be light weight, and didn’t offer as much protection as needed. Next, the military looked to MRAPs, a kind of heavy truck made for surviving bomb blasts. The L-ATV borrows design elements from MRAPs, but with the promise of more speed, and therefore more mobility, than the heavier armored trucks. The original Humvee, like the jeeps it replaced, was designed as an off-road vehicle, and the L-ATV should be able to travel freely across terrain too.

The L-ATV is almost three times the weight of the original Humvee design. That’s a major concern for the Marines, who will field the L-ATVs from ships initially designed to carry their lighter predecessors. In the initial contract, Oshkosh will build 17,000 of the L-ATV over the next few years, with 5,500 of those going to the Marine Corps. The total production run of the vehicle is set to be much larger, with the Army looking to replace over 49,000 vehicles currently in service.

Three times the weight of the original humvee design. That's pretty heavy. Lighter than plenty of armored vehicles surely, but way heavier than your average pickup truck or jeep or hummer. A potential concern there in terms of mobility, perhaps. On the other hand, some armor in the right places can help save lives, so I think you want to find your balance between mobility and protection. What do you think?

This Motor Trend article adds a few more technical details:

The Oshkosh engineers started with the fragile human occupants and layered protection outward. A blast-deflecting and -absorbing unitized central shell surrounds energy-absorbing seats and floor panels. Subframes attach in such a way as to direct harm away from the occupants. Similarly, the TAK-4i intelligent independent suspension is designed to absorb off-road impacts like a SCORE race truck, providing 20 inches of total travel. The JLTV is said to be able to traverse any course of ruts and bumps 70 percent faster than the Oshkosh Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) ATV, the next most-capable military truck, at equivalent comfort levels. Ride height is adjustable, allowing the JLTV to crouch into low-clearance amphibious transport vehicles. We presume the suspension employs oil and/or air springs, and we understand that central tire inflation is provided (suggesting it may use offset gear-reduction hubs like the Humvee), but further specifics remain under wraps while Lockheed-Martin contests the Pentagon’s 55,000-vehicle contract awarded to Oshkosh. (Another rejected supplier, AM General, is not protesting the decision.) Stay tuned.

Interesting stuff I think. Discuss.

posted on Apr, 30 2016 @ 07:52 AM
a reply to: TheBadCabbie

Looks pretty cool.

I like the two seater but it says nothing about cup holders. Where am I going to put my double skim mocha caramel latte with two Splenda hold the whipped in the civilian version?

posted on Apr, 30 2016 @ 08:11 AM
I want one!!
Hope its better than the hummer, the horror stories ive herd from u.s service peeps, some love them but most hate them, the l-atv has got a beast of an engine, makes my turbo diesel seem like a starter motor!!.
S & F.
All the best.
B. V. H.a reply to: TheBadCabbie

posted on Apr, 30 2016 @ 08:15 AM
Hmmm...I'm imagining a short Brit who fancies America a lot comparing it to the Marauder he drove a few years ago.

posted on Apr, 30 2016 @ 08:46 AM
Every motorpool Monday while performing PMCS on our old, dilapidated, HMMWVs I prayed for the day we could scrap the garbage vehicle and replace it with something that makes sense to have.

posted on Apr, 30 2016 @ 08:49 AM
Whoa...that thing looks very cool.

The US should make an all terrain vehicle like the one the Russians made. I can't remember the name of it but someone made a post recently about it.

posted on Apr, 30 2016 @ 08:57 AM
If we lose a little mobility but dont have our boys and girls in a combat area without adequate armor for way to many mission I call it a good exchange.

posted on Apr, 30 2016 @ 09:16 AM
a reply to: TheBadCabbie

Very nice,
I wonder what the makers of the bowler wildcat could do with that chassis given what they did with a Land Rover.
Not a miltary vehicle but give it some armour, a more powerful engine to take the extra weight and a V shaped under hull and it would stack up nicely, very nicely indeed.

It is a nice and purpose designed but that front grill look's too flat, should have a forward facing V shapped armoured screen or armoured mesh to compensate for shaped charge anti tank grenades such as the Russian and Chinese made RPG series.

Actually I like the Lockhead martyn contender more even though it never won the contract.

posted on Apr, 30 2016 @ 09:39 AM
Looks great for a big bulky vehicle. Unfortunately there will be a lot of places it can't go and soldiers will have to dismount and hike in.

There is a need for light unarmored vehicles in the military, but they should never be used in situations where armoured vehicles are needed.

posted on Apr, 30 2016 @ 10:33 AM
Lighter can be useful. Here's an anecdotal example of why.

In the nineties I was an ammotech Marine in NC. Once or twice a year we would take all of the useless explosives that were damaged out to the range to practice disposing of the ordinance. I believe we called it grade 3 when it was too damaged to issue to using units.

It was a big deal to demo the grade 3 so we loaded up around 40 marines and headed out on a wet afternoon to a field where we could dig ditches and set pits full of explosives.

Nine of the 10 pits were normal explosives so it was acceptable to set the charges so that they blew up into the sky. It was very satisfying to watch large plumes of smoke and mud fly up into the air from our observation site about 1/4 mile away. Each pit was set to blow at about 30 second intervals.

Pit number 10 however was filed with incendiary ammo. This means that the pit needed to blow down into the earth so that white phosphorous didn't blow all over the range catching it on fire.

We set everything and started the time chord. That was when we learned that the Dragon wagon was so heavy that it sank in the mud. We had used it to truck out the majority of marines so this meant we now had a cucv and a humvee left.

I was driving the cucv (a Chevy custom 10 with bald tires) and my best friend was in the hummer. We both f ferried as many as we could at a time back to the OP with the time running out. My truck got stuck on the second run so this meant that the only way to get back on time was in the hummer.

I was in the second to last load so when I got back Soto smiled real big at me and gave me crap about saving my life. He then gassed it and headed back to pick up the officers who had remained behind until the men were safe.

The hummer had the power to truck through mud and was light enough not to get stuck. My friend never let that go.

In the end they rounded the corner just as the first pit went up and we all had a good laugh... until pit 10 blew WP all over the field. It had been set wrong. We all watched in horror as white hot fire rained down on our Dragon. Luckily it didn't catch fire. But the field did and my Chevy got a little singed.

The light weight was useful then. I hope this next vehicle is rendered completely useless by a peaceful world...ah hell. An old marine can dream, can't he?

edit on 04Sat, 30 Apr 2016 10:36:23 -05001020164America/Chicago by Mrgone because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 30 2016 @ 10:36 AM

originally posted by: billyvonhelvete
the l-atv has got a beast of an engine[/post]

Yeah, lots of torque, lots of fun.

posted on May, 2 2016 @ 02:28 AM
I would like to see carbyne/folded graphene armor plating or scale even. Weight cost is not an issue but perhaps making enough and developing idea would be pricey and you could tool up to replace brass shell casings with graphene too perhaps for further weight reduction gains.

posted on May, 2 2016 @ 01:34 PM
a reply to: stabstab

Hmm about twice as strong as Kevlar and there are claim's a sheet as think as a sheet of cling film (celophane) could stop a bullet but I think that unlikely, still it is very strong and better than kevlar so perhaps if they can refince the production process and make a hybrid material incorporating it then it would make a light weight Chobham type composite armour incorporating layers of Graphine, it would be hugely expensive at first though but with 3d printing technology's getting ever better it is only a matter of time before they could do so very cheaply.

Maybe the next generation of armoured jeep after this.

For that matter I know it is sadly being phased out but imaging a warthog A10 variant with radar absorbing super light weight armour of this time and swing wing's like a tornado to allow it to engage at higher speed's and at altitude as well.

And of course the chasis they have chosen like it's two main competitor's can be retrofitted to a variety of job's and armour type's so all we are really seeing here is the basic model, in it's underwear if you like.

posted on May, 2 2016 @ 01:42 PM
a reply to: TheBadCabbie

only the americans could give a vehicle with a dry weight of 7 tons the designation - " light " with a straight face

posted on May, 13 2016 @ 01:57 PM

originally posted by: ignorant_ape
a reply to: TheBadCabbie

only the americans could give a vehicle with a dry weight of 7 tons the designation - " light " with a straight face

The "Light" designation isn't referring to the vehicles weight, it is referring to the "duty" it will perform. Think a light duty pickup truck that can tow 2500 pounds vs a heavy duty f-350 that can tow 12,000+.

This all being said, and speaking as a former Marine Corps Mechanic, I have mixed feelings. Humvee's (HMMWV) are both simultaneously pieces of # and indestructible. Often times they can break from stupid shot you imagine shouldn't be to much of a hassle (ignition switches for example). Ignition switches were in the Pre Expended bin for Christ sakes (that means we kept a supply of them on hand because they went out so often) another issue is the blinker module (it's name escapes me, but it's a big box). Box gets banged around and shorts filling the cabin with the lovely smell of electrical fire.

Secondly, they are a pain in the #ing ass to work on. If you work on cars enough, you would know they are typically not designed with ease of mechanic in mind, damn engineers can literally build engine from the ground up, but you wanna replace the power steering reservoir? Your gonna have to take off 5 other things too and the dog house inside! Humvee's are typically way worse to work on from a mechanic point of view.

All this being said however, when it's not something stupid like an ignition switch taking a #, you can beat the hell out of Humvee's within "reason" of course. Case in point: One time we had a Humvee that had a #ing transmission problem. We were only a 2nd echelon shop and transmission problems are a 3rd echelon issue. (It means we don't have the facilities and specialty tools to even work on Transmissions), well, due to some bull# technicalities that escape me at the moment, 3rd wouldn't take it, they claimed we should be able to fix whatever it was that was wrong with the transmission which of course, due to not having the tools or personnel to work on, we couldn't. They wouldn't budge.

So, at the time I was a LCPL and my Sgt really wanted this truck off our lot, he pulls me aside and tells me "test drive the # out of it, and make sure the transfer case works" T-case is also a 3rd issue. This was code for "Lcpl, go break this truck" so I grabbed a buddy that was an operator and we took it for a test drive, and, while going around 50mph, he accidentally very forcefully threw the T case into Low, at high speed, in gear, and the grinding, crunching and spinning sounds were the worst sounds a mechanic could hear. The truck stopped accelerating. We'd done it, I thought. We get a tow back and now we have to do our checks, another technicality. Now the T case is broken too we planned on telling them, well, in the course of our trouble shooting, we have to go through all the ranges. I started the truck up, expecting it to not move and lo and behold, everything #ing engages and the truck works. I never figured it out, but I assume there was some sort of fail safe. Point being though, that were it not for stupid, petty regulations that stop a truck from being driveable stateside (for example, if even one blinker light is out, the truck is deadlined and not allowed to be driven) to some seemingly pointless things like the ignition switch, the Humvee is a decent workhorse.

Moving on to the replacement: Personally, as I have said, I'm torn. The vehicle is made by Oshkosh and Oshkosh trucks are #ing solid and a bit easier to work on (LVSR, 7Ton), but the other part tells me they are kinda big, and may be unwieldy in future conflicts. Right now, our main combat operations are in rural Middle Eastern areas, and our biggest threat is IDEs, and that requires a specially shaped armor hull and big vehicles (MRAPs) but who knows where we might go in the future. Right now, truck size isn't an issue, but if our next combat zone is in a more urban setting, big trucks may severely reduce mobility. I only hope the military officials took the future into account when they made the decision, it's the lesser of two evils I guess.
edit on 13-5-2016 by chuck258 because: (no reason given)

posted on May, 15 2016 @ 12:03 AM
a reply to: chuck258

Most of the unarmored examples in inventory are fairly new/rebuilt. They'll be around/available in case they're needed or could be useful for many years to come. Probably parked somewhere and smelling worse than ever, but they'll start.

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