The Oshkosh Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles are a group of vehicles that were designed for the U.S. Army and the Marine Corps and were intended to protect against ambushes and explosive attacks that soldiers encounter during a war; the MRAPs were brought into service in 2002 and are still in use today. They were designed in response to the death of U.S. soldiers in Iraq, to ensure that no more soldiers would die in ambushes and bomb attacks.
TYPES OF MRAP VEHICLES
MRAP vehicles are separated into three categories based on their weight; Category 1 MRAP vehicles are the Mine Resistant Utility Vehicle (MRUV) model which is smaller and lighter than the other two categories and was designed for use in urban operations.
Category 2 vehicles were the Joint Explosive Ordnance Disposal Rapid Response Vehicle (JERRV) was designed for frontline work such as leading convoys, troop transportation, ambulance functions, combat engineering and explosive ordnance disposal, which deals with rendering bombs inoperable and safe.
There is only one vehicle in Category 3 of the MRAP vehicles and that is the Buffalo Mine Protected Vehicle (MPV) that is specially used for finding and clearing mines and other explosives.
Although there are 3 types of MRAP vehicles, they are not all designed and supplied by Oshkosh Corp; Oshkosh Corp. was only responsible for the design and production of the MRAP All Terrain Vehicle (M-ATV.
HISTORY OF THE OSHKOSK M-ATV
Oshkosh was among the companies chosen by the U.S. Defense Force to supply them with protected vehicles; however their entry in Category 1 MRAP series was turned down after being originally accepted because of concerns about the vehicles safety. Their Category 2 entry was also rejected because it did not meet all the requirements at that time.
Then in June 2009 the M-ATV was chosen as the sole winner of a contest for All Terrain Vehicles and Oshkosh was given a US$1.06B contract to deliver 2,244 of the vehicles. The first shipment of vehicles arrived in Afghanistan in October 2009 and has been applauded for saving numerous lives since then.
FEATURES OF THE OSHKOSH M-ATV
The Oshkosh M-ATV provided the same level of protection as the bigger and heavier MRAPs while providing better mobility; the hulls of the M-ATV were designed to protect its crew from explosives while it could travel at 30 mph. the M-ATVs tires are centrally inflated and it can travel an additional 30 miles even if two of its tires lose pressure and will travel at least one kilometer after being hit by a 7.62 mm shell. Other features of the M-ATV include traction control for added safety and anti-locking brakes as well as power outlets and heating, ventilation and air conditioning.
The roof mounted turret of the M-ATV can hold a M240 machine gun, a MK19 grenade launcher or a BGM-71 Tow anti tank guided missile launcher; the roof turret can be operated remotely from inside the cabin or from the turret itself. The M-ATV uses the same chassis as the Medium Tactical Vehicle Replacement and a TAK-4 suspension system which is coil sprung and fully independent.