Hendrick Dynamics, in partnership with BAE Systems unveiled their ‘Commando’ Jeep Ground Mobility Vehicle (GMV) late last year in response to the U.S. Army’s call for an ultra-light vehicle to support the ‘Global Response Force’.
It is believed that 14 Commando prototypes have been built to date, including 2-door, 4-door and Ute variants, some of which have been deployed to combat zones and/or completed the army’s GMV performance demonstration.
“The Jeep is capable, in just the last two years they’ve successfully deployed in combat and completed the Army’s GMV performance demonstration,” said Marshall Carlson, Hendrick Dynamics General Manager.
A key U.S. Army requirement is that the vehicle is based on a commercial off-the-shelf vehicle (COTS) which means it leverages large-scale automotive production exceeding 200,000 units annually, and is produced using competitive multi-source supply chains.
Or in other words it’s going to be cheap when compared to low volume purpose built military vehicles.
Another important requirement is compliance with the U.S. Army’s Single Fuel mandate of 2012. To meet this requirement the Commando uses the 2.8-litre VM Motori diesel, which has been tuned to run on any type of diesel or JP-8 jet fuel.
“Hendrick Dynamics has taken an innovative, but solid approach in creating this COTS GMV platform, that we believe will provide the Army with the low-cost, expeditionary capability that is needed to achieve their Force 2025 objectives.” said Mark Signorelli, Vice President and General Manager of Combat Vehicles at BAE Systems.
The Commando comes with on-board diagnostics and a parts supply network that spans around 100 countries, factors that help to reduce vehicle downtime, repair costs and Army maintained part inventories.
Hendrick’s aren’t alone in competing for the GMV contract. They have stiff competition from Israel’s Automotive Industries and their battle proven Wrangler based ‘Storm’. Automotive Industries has been modifying Jeeps for military service for nearly four decades.
Commando features and options include;
• Chromoly Roll-Over Protective Structure (ROPS)
• JP-8/Global Diesel Powered Turbo Engine
• 197 Horsepower and 339 LbFt Torque
• Enhanced Engine Air & Fuel Vent Filtration
• 5-Speed Auto Transmission with Overdrive
• Two-Speed 4WD System with 4:1 Low Range
• Selectable Front & Rear Locking Differentials
• Premium Kevlar® Reinforced Tires & Spare
• Floor Mounted Shift Levers in Custom Console
• Hand Operated Mechanical Emergency Brake
• Slide & Recline Seats with Latch Harnesses
• Cabin Heating, Air Conditioning, Defroster
• Cabin & Side Mounted Rear View Mirrors
• Operable Windows & Removable Tops
• Windshield with Wipers and Washers
• Headlights, Brake & Backup Lights, Turn Signals
• Dual AGM Battery System with Isolator
• Dash Mounted Six-Switch Accessory Panel
• Gauges include Speed, RPM, Temp, Fuel, Miles, Hours
• Ruggedized Bumpers with Front & Rear Towing
• Fixed Wing & Overland Tiedowns (patent pending)
• Steel Fenders with Heavy Debris Flaps
• Durable Polyurethane Enamel Tactical Finish
• Maximum Payload & Terrain Mobility (patent pending)
• Helicopter Internal Air Transport (patented)
• Man-Optional Robotics with Teleop & Autonomy
• Multi-Sensor Situational Awareness Platform
• 7-Function Force Feedback Manipulator Arm
• Knuckleboom Hydraulic Crane with Thumb
• Blackout Operations with Infrared Head & Tail Lights
• Exportable 24V at 50-250 Amps & 120V at 2-4 kW
• Mission Pallet Attachment System (patent pending)
• Integrated APOBS Mount with Remote Firing
• Multipower 5kW Genset, Welder, Air & Hydraulic
• Marsupial Mechanism Deploying Small UGV
• High Performance Onboard Air Compressor
• Self Recovery Package including Winch
• Snorkel Air Intake with Cyclonic Filtration
• Stowable Adaptive Countermine Roller & Rake
• Ground Penetrating Radar with Marking Array
• Towed Countermine Roller with Disruptors
• VERTEX® Tactical Attachment Points (patent pending)
• Litter Carriers, Bustle Racks, Comms Mounts
• Assault Platform, Ladder, Seating, Gate Crasher
• Rifle Muzzle Scabbard for Driver & Passenger
• Expanded Capability Onboard Tools & Spares