SOCOM may pick truck winner in May

SOCOM may pick truck winner in May

U.S. Special Operations Command in coming weeks may select a company to supply it with a new four-by-four truck.

The contract for the Ground Mobility Vehicle program is valued at as much as $670 million over seven years. The deal calls for delivering 220 trucks a year, or possibly 1,540 in total. The funding would also cover spare parts, training and an electronics communications suite.

The vehicle must carry as many as seven passengers, weigh less than 7,000 pounds unloaded and be transportable in a CH-47 Chinook helicopter. The truck must also be able to fire its weapon in less than a minute upon driving off the twin-rotor aircraft.


The command, based at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, has already narrowed down the field of competitors to three companies: tank-maker General Dynamics Corp., based in Falls Church, Virginia; Humvee-maker AM General LLC, based in Sound Bend, Indiana; and truck-maker Navistar International Corp., based in Lisle, Illinois.

A final decision is expected in early May, according to an industry source with knowledge of the competition.

The winner will also probably benefit from international sales of the vehicle, or a similar version of it, especially in the Middle East. Countries such as Oman, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait have expressed interest in upgrading their fleets of armored trucks.

The command now uses a version of the iconic Humvee, which entered U.S. Army service in 1985 and whose vulnerability to roadside blasts was exposed during the U.S.-led wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The Army wants to replace about a third of its Humvee fleet with a new light-duty truck called the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle, or JLTV. The service last summer awarded contracts to three companies — AM General, Oshkosh Corp. and Lockheed Martin Corp. — to build prototypes.

U.S. military vehicle programs face an uncertain future since the March 1 start of automatic budget cuts known as sequestration and last year’s strategic shift by the Pentagon away from the ground wars of the past decade and toward threats in the Asia-Pacific region.

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Here in Keene, NH, our Police Department recently took delivery of a “Lenco BearCat”, built on a standard Ford F-350 /550 chassis, under a Grant Program through HomeSec.… Lenco Industries’ small manufacturing plant in the Pittsfield / Greenfield Mass. area is probably not yet big enough to supply or fill the full GMV Program, but could certainly ramp up to quickly deliver 10 — 20 “Demonstrator” vehicles for testing /acceptance at Aberdeen, Yuma, etc…Then, under DOD auspices, these vehicles could be made, delivered, and deployed to various “customer countries” as Security Force Vehicles…No, these are NOT MRAP’s, nor do they need to be.…
There is MUCH empty manufacturing capacity and factories, here in the Keene, NH area, which could, within 6 — 12 months, be turning out sold vehicles, and providing MANY, NEW, good-paying jobs to boost the local economy.…. Let’s get this idea out there…DOD doesn’t need to ONLY go with a “Big 3″ mentality when planning vehicle acquisition and procurement.….Better to have a “good enough” truck IN SERVICE, than to have the “Best” truck AWAITING DELIVERY!.….What ever happened to the “AMER-I-CAN-DO Spirit”…???…

The “Lenco BearCat” is far too large for this specific program. Notice the weight and transportability requirements mentioned in the article? This truck is for SOCOM (Special Operations Command). If they can’t transport, deploy, and recover quickly, they may as well stay home.

LOL..no kidding, the “Lenco BearCat” is only 10,000 lbs overweight, empty. Not to mention, there is no way that monstrosity could fit inside a CH-47.

I’m confused.…is this a JSOC, Joint Spec. Opns. Cmd purchase (AF, USMC USA etc.) or a SOC (Ft. Bragg based) purchase for the army? The article references “the command based at MacDill AFB” that JSOC. Help me out

Any info on why SOCOM is going for a specific built truck and not a modified commercially available one like the Toyota Hilux, Ford F-150, or other on the market? I know that the white Toyota Hilux with a red stripe down the side is everywhere in the Middle East, if you were going for something that didn’t stand out, that seems like the way to go.

I suppose the better question is: Do anyone have a link to the actual Request For Proposal?

It is US Special Operations Command, just like the article states. USSOCOM is a Unified Combatant Command (just like USCENTCOM, USPACOM, USSTRATCOM, etc, etc).
It’s subordinate commands include JSOC, SOC-JC, USASOC, NSWC, AFSOC and MARSOC.

SOCOM is the requester since the vehicle would replace the GMV currently used by SEALs, SF and MARSOC. JSOC is a subunified command of SOCOM along with ARSOC, NSW, AFSOC and MARSOC and is based at Bragg/Pope. SOCOM is based at MacDill AFB.

Really seem SOCOM gets more money than the whole Army since it has everything seems of its own now its own truck? Read that they use HUMVEEs and even M-151s still for scout work? Seem SOCOM will have many many vehicles at there disposal.

This is part of the Pentagon’s acquisition problem. SOCOM shouldn’t be developing anything. Army should simply include a lightweight version of whatever truck replacement product they come out with for SOCOM. Or, if SOCOM did the right thing, can the Army and Marine Corps replacement and go with SOCOM’s pick.

But, as was pointed out above (and even by that leftist Bill Maher on his HBO show), all the enemy light combat vehicles are the same model of Toyota pickup! Why do we need anything different?

I understand that much FDD

Thanks for all your posts guys, its time to take a walk in the woods with my .45 acp colt new agent.…LOL…Like the intel community, we’ve created a sp.opns bureaucracy of special opns. gee why did I go to Army Corps of Engs. I could have been siting at a desk w/a chute hanging on the front barking at LTC’s for sheety power point pres. of different branches while working on my war college-(RC) thesis and had a shot at a star…dam

You’re a Colonel and don’t know where JSOC is based?

Lockheed to build a Turck? They have enough problems building aircraft. If Lockheed was choosen it would be behind schedule and over budget by the time they sign the contract but still, Lockheed building Trucks?????

That is like having John Deer build aircraft

Lockheed builds everything and is the Walmart of DoD. Welcome to Lockmart.

Does this mean that Oshkosh Defense is out of the running for GMV?

I am not aware of Oshkosh submitting a GMV design. They are, of course, still in the running for the JLTV, which is a entirely different program.

Couldn’t Ford, GM or Ram “up-armor” one of their off-the-shelf models — I mean, what the hell, the Federal Government already owns GM. I know, I know; been around tactical vehicles before, and I know there’s more to it than putting on big tires. Nevertheless, the bad guys are using regular Toyotas, and the U.S.of A. should able to do better than that easily. And, a parts pipeline is already there. Also, sometime you have to figure out where you are going to make the trade off between armor and mobility. The Rangers seem to have made that calculation already.

Feel free to convince Ford GM and Dodge that they should participate in this market. The government isn’t shutting them out, they are making that business decision themselves

The solicitation for the proposal has been on the street for over a year now. All potential bidders had their opportunity to compete. Awards should not be based on location but a combination of price, quality, vehicle performance, and support.

Check your spelling, I believe a Col would know how to spell.

Oshkosh was kicked out of the competition and is now protesting.

The unions destroyed the AMER-I-CAN-DO spirit unfortunately. They have driven up costs and lowered qualifications for employment bringing down quality. Our Spec Forces need the best we can deliver as soon as we can get it to them.

Quick, contact GM, Ford or Chrysler. A freaking four wheel drive truck for SOCOM? They could each do it for less than 100K each which is what DoD will want to spend…

He’s no Col.….

Will this vehicle be up-heavy, or will it be another CUCV type truck? If not a heavy vehicle, then any old 4x4 pick up will do. The cost of these things is about $43 and some change a pop.

If you can take any F-150 and add armor and a weapon at less than 7K lb., you must have left out the engine. How about balloon tires so they can float it also??

We got to test ride most of those options . Nothing compares to the Navistar truck. Wins easy.

No, KrazyCOL just doesn’t know how to spell COOL in caps. Well, maybe he is a colonel.

Lockheed is a successful developer and producer of aircraft, ships and ground based systems…as well as projection missile/rocket systems, anti-armor systems and anti-aircraft systems…and they upgrade systems specific to other defense contractor systems.…for example, Lockheed won the contract to upgrade existing Boeing Apache platforms software architecture and to provide support for the systems. Old 391, defense has come a long way since IBM made M1 carbines.

You are right on the money. No bid work on their platform as the design requirements are nbot what he Customer wants or expects.

Up-armored vehicles have been purchased, and will continue to be purchased but these vehicles have many flaws which become evident during continued use. Purpose built vehicles can be designed for the abuse from the start thus making the best use of the weight they will have need to have to survive. Today’s hmvee is a perfect example of this fact. In it’s day, did the job. Now it’s so overloaded it can barely get out of it’s own way. And for all those saying, the enemies use the a hilux we just need to be better than that… I’d prefer to be the best we can, for the mission we can, not be just good enough when our soldiers lives are on the line. Just my 2 cents.

Can they…maybe. If it made sense financially they already would. To many small companies already exist that buy their vehicles and add armor. It’s not really a large market share they would take over. Secondly, look at the contract sizes. I couldn’t imagine a company the size of them wanting to touch the red tape/military contracting side of things for 1000 vehicles over 7 years.

Take a look at the vehicle Navistar’s entry is based on from Indigen Armor.

Oshkosh is no longer in the running for the GMV 1.1. There entry did not make it past the first round. Current vehicle are:
General Dynamic Flyer
Navistar/Indigen SOTV
AM General modified humvee

good vehicle

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