Continuing to use an innovative and unprecedented business process, Marine Corps Systems Command (MCSC) issued additional orders today to produce and field more life-saving armored vehicles. The Low Rate Initial Production (LRIP) orders, issued simultaneously to three manufacturers for 180 Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles, have a total dollar amount of more than $79 million. This is in addition to two LRIP orders issued last week for 215 MRAP vehicles for approximately $122 million. The total amount for the five LRIP orders is now 395 MRAP vehicles. These orders, which have a total dollar amount of more than $200 million, were issued to accelerate the production of lower risk vehicle material solutions in advance of testing and production orders.
On Jan. 26, MCSC challenged industry by awarding nine separate Indefinite Delivery, Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) contracts for 36 initial MRAP test vehicles. The IDIQ contracts required these initial vehicles to be produced within 60 days. However, in about a three week period, five of the vendors demonstrated their reliability to produce vehicles meeting Marine Corps survivability requirements, production numbers and delivery timelines. Last week LRIP orders were issued to: BAE Systems, Ground Systems Division and Force Protection Industries, Inc. Today, MCSC issued LRIP orders to General Dynamics Land Systems – Canada Corp., Oshkosh Truck Corporation and Protected Vehicles, Inc. Additional LRIP orders may still be issued.
“Like we mentioned last week, all nine manufacturers originally receiving IDIQ orders are still active and competitive in this program,” said Paul Mann, MCSC’s program manager for MRAP. “Vendors that have not received LRIP orders have been afforded the opportunity to prove their capabilities in these areas and are still very much a player in this program.”
More than 60 MRAP vehicles are currently being used by Marine forces in Iraq. These armored vehicles have a proven record of saving lives by augmenting the current level of mine, rocket propelled grenades and improvised explosive devices (IED) protection with a V-shaped hull and raised chassis.
“These vehicles continue provide the best available protection for our warfighters,” said Brig. Gen. Michael Brogan, MCSC commander. “Awarding multiple contracts and issuing orders simultaneously creates full and open competition so we can expand the production base and more rapidly put these life-saving vehicles into the hands of our warfighters.”
The contracts and orders cover two categories of MRAP vehicles. Category I is the smaller, lighter Mine Resistant Utility Vehicle (MRUV) for urban combat operations. Category II is the larger, medium-sized Joint Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Rapid Response Vehicle (JERRV) for multi-mission operations such as convoy lead, troop transport, ambulance, explosive ordnance disposal and combat engineering. The five defense contractors receiving LRIP orders are required to produce 190 MRUVs and 205 JERRVs with delivery commencing in April.
“Success is in the hands of industry,” said Barry Dillon, MCSC’s executive director. “The vehicles need to have adequate survivability, need to be produced at a high rate and need to be fielded as soon as possible. We are depending on industry to fulfill their contracts on time. We are encouraging them to produce vehicles faster. The faster we can field quality, safe MRAP vehicles, the more lives we can save.”