This has been a fast-paced six-month stretch for Oshkosh Defense since MON had an opportunity to meet with the company’s George Mansfield, Vice President and General Manager of Joint Programs, during 2019 AUSA Global.
Most recently, the US Marine Corps (USMC) announced it is now planning to field 15,390 Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) not later than about 2034 – almost tripling its original approved acquisition objective of 5,500. In August, the USMC was the first JLTV customer service to declare initial operational capability (IOC) and in September, Oshkosh Defense delivered its first JLTV for the Marine Corps’ III MEF (Pacific theatre of operations).
Mr Mansfield observed the immediate concern of his company is literally “to deliver thousands of trucks out to the field in fiscal year 2020 – that’s what we’re really focusing on.” Indeed, while the company is presently turning out 17 trucks daily, that number will increase to 20 JLTVs per day next summer.
Concurrently, the Oshkosh JLTV team is moving forward on two other fronts. In one case it is expanding its presence at overseas events, such as last week’s 2019 DSEI, to help build the business case to invest in the vehicle, while also strengthening the programme’s life cycle support. “This includes maintenance, FSR (field service representatives) parts, manuals – and all the other materiel needed to get full support out to the Marines and soldiers,” Mansfield pointed out.
As part of Oshkosh continuing to explore the art of the possible for JLTV, at Modern Day Marine 2019 the company showcased a 4-door General Purpose JLTV with a JAVELIN Integration Kit, LW30 remote weapon station and a BLACK HORNET vehicle reconnaissance system. A 2-door Utility JLTV was equipped with a UVision HERO-120 tactical loitering munition.
Oshkosh Defense also continues to mature its JLTV ambulance variant, introduced to the community earlier this year. Mr Mansfield noted his dialogue continues with the services about refining the vehicle design. “We’ve had Marines at Oshkosh, the Army from Fort Sam Houston visiting us. We’re giving a voice to the customer for that vehicle. That’s a variant that should hopefully take off in the near future for the US but foreign nations, too.”