BAE Caiman (armored vehicle)

BAE Caiman (armored vehicle)

The Caiman is an armored vehicle with a V-hull design based on the Family of Medium Tactical Vehicles (FMTV) and Low Signature Armored Cab (LSAC), initially developed by Stewart & Stevenson. Stewart & Stevenson was later acquired by Armor Holdings in 2005 who developed the Caiman from the FMTV and LSAC designs. Armor Holdings also owned O'Gara-Hess & Eisenhardt (who had exclusive rights to the up-armor kits the U.S. Military selected for their Humvees) and Integrated Textile Systems (who had a ultra high molecular weight polyethylene fiber called Tensylon® that is processed into composite armor) at the time. BAE Systems acquired Armor Holdings in 2007, and now develops and manufactures the Caiman as well as the Family of Medium Tactical Vehicles it is based on.

The Caiman recently, as of July 2007, completed testing by the US Military at the Aberdeen Proving Grounds. On 13 July 2007, Armor Holdings received a prime contract award by the US Navy on the behalf of the US Marine Corps for $518.5m under the Mine Resistant Ambush Protected vehicle program. The contract specifies delivery of 1,154 Category I MRAP vehicles and 16 Category II MRAP vehicles by the end of February 2008. [ [ Marine Corps News> MRAP Orders Approach 5,000 ] ]

It is likely that the Cat I will be based on the LMTV, while the Cat II will be based on the MTV. The Cat I Caiman weighs 14 ton and the Cat II version weighs 24 ton which according to the Vice President of Armor Holdings, is lighter in weight than its competitors. [ [ - U.S. Marines Order 1,170 MRAPs - 07/13/07 18:55 ] ] The work will be performed at BAE Systems M&PS facilities located in Fairfield, Ohio and Sealy, Texas.

A reinforced Caiman design submitted by BAE was one of the two eventual winners of the MRAP II competition at the Aberdeen Proving Ground.

Caiman features:
*10-man crew capacity
*Tensylon® Composite Armor [ [ Article on Tensylon based composite armor used in Caiman.] ]
*Armoring enhancement capable
*Accepts all types of manned and remote weapons stations
*85 percent parts commonality with standard FMTV models (40,000 of which are already fielded)
*Full-time all wheel drive
*Fully automatic transmission
*Electronic Central Tire Inflation System (CTIS)
*Anti-lock Braking System (ABS)
*Class V Interactive Electronic Technical Manuals (IETM)

See a picture of the Caiman [ here] .


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