MARINE CORPS: Light Armored Vehicles to Stay in Service Until 2035

October 18, 2012 at 11:29 am Leave a comment

Two More Decades

(U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Michael E. Warren)

Because of tight budgets and shifting priorities, the U.S. Marine Corps plans to hang on to its 1980s’ Light Armored Vehicles (LAVs) for another 23 years.

Earlier this year, Marine Corps Commandant James Amos told the House defense appropriations subcommittee that the Marines were exploring “options to adjust to changing fiscal realities” and that was creating “a clear imperative” to reset some legacy equipment while modernizing the rest. Amos said the venerable LAV is one of the programs “vital to our ground combat elements.”

The seven different versions of the LAV have been providing the Marines with reconnaissance, infantry support, anti-tank protection, troop and supply transport — as well as electronic warfare capabilities — for 29 years.  The eight-wheel, diesel-powered combat infantry vehicle first entered the Marine Corps inventory in 1983 and has had two service-extending upgrades since then. Now all of the 900-plus LAVs in service will get blast-protected seats and other upgrades to improve survivability against roadside bombs and vehicle crashes.

Three of the seven LAV variants are in line for additional upgrades like advanced weapons systems or satellite communications.

To read more of our LAV article for Seapower magazine, click here.

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Entry filed under: National Security and Defense, Technology, Weaponry and Equipment. Tags: , , , , , , .

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