Army Delivers Massive Fleet of 3,000 New, Multi-Variant AMPV Infantry Carriers
The Army is delivering a massive force of thousands of new Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicles (AMPV), infantry vehicles of different variants intended to follow on and ultimately replace the service’s Vietnam-era M113 and streamline modernization across its armored vehicle formations.
The first AMPVs have been delivered to the Army out of a planned initial fleet size of 3,000, a number which is still less than one-third of the Army’s massive M113 fleet of 13,000 vehicles. M113s make up as much as one-third of the entire fleet.
The Army’s Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicle, designed to transport troops under armor, conduct reconnaissance missions, evacuate injured soldiers, fire weapons and withstand major enemy ground-war attacks
The initial 3,000, however, may just a beginning for the Army as the service anticipates it will ultimately fully replace the M113 in coming years. The service does say it will deliver the 3,000 AMPVs over the next 20 years, however it would not seem surprising if the Army added more given the versatility of the vehicle and the number of different variants. The Army is already underway with a General Purpose variant, along with a Mortar Carrier, Mission Command, Medical Evacuation and Medical Treatment variants.
For the purpose of streamlining logistics across its fleet of AMPVs, and ensuring ongoing technological upgradeability, the Army is building the new vehicles with a common set of technical standards. This effort, often referred to as open architecture, uses IP Protocol and other elements of the vehicle’s technical infrastructure to ensure the platform can accommodate upgrades quickly as they emerge. This means, perhaps, smaller form-factor, higher-throughput sensors, more advanced AI-enabled computing or next-generation weapons needing to integrate with the platform.
Common parts mean breakdowns, maintenance and sustainment can be managed across the entire fleet of AMPV variants to preserve and streamline operational readiness. An interesting Army essay on the AMPV says the vehicle also has common parts with the M2 Bradleys and M109A7 Paladins, a development which can help upgrade and sustain an entire armored formation.
Not surprisingly, the first AMPV variant ready was the highly networked “Mission Command” variant designed to enable mobile, multi-domain mission command on the move. This would make sense given the service’s known emphasis upon networking. An Army write up describes the “Mission Command” variant as a vehicle which operates a mobile “command post,” with “increased size, weight, power and cooling, and provides a significant increase in command, control, computers, communications, cyber, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capability.”
The Army has been working on accomplishing Mission Command on the Move for many years, and recent breakthroughs with AI-enabled, multi-domain information sharing and analysis are likely to expedite high-speed networking across all variants and the wider force. The General Purpose variant is intended to support a dismounted infantry squad during “tactical assaults,” as it could quickly reinforce advancing forces and help units amidst combat quickly “maneuver” from one point to another.
The Medical Evacuation MEDEVAC and Medical Treatment variants bring serious, life-saving medical expertise and equipment to the tip of the spear in high-threat enemy areas often under hostile fire. Army Medics, physician’s assistants or even trauma surgeons travel in the vehicles with litters for casualties and the vheicle accommodates size sitting casualities.