The U.S. Army has selected Oshkosh Defense and partner, ST Engineering, to participate in the prototype phase for the U.S. Army’s Cold Weather All-Terrain Vehicle (CATV). The CATV is a new program for a tracked vehicle that operates in extreme cold weather or arctic conditions and is designed to replace the Small Unit Support Vehicles (SUSVs) that have been in service since the early 1980s. The Oshkosh CATV is derived from the Bronco 3, a member of the proven, highly effective, and reliable Bronco family of vehicles (FoV) by ST Engineering which have been in service in various countries.
The Cold Weather All-Terrain Vehicle are set to undergo testing and soldier evaluation in the third quarter of 2021 with a decision due in 2022, after which the selected vehicle will go straight into production. Ahead of the trials, the company put the proposed vehicles head-to-head to find out more. Oshkosh Defense and ST Engineering have built two prototypes – one General Purpose and one Cargo. The prototypes were delivered to the US Army Cold Regions Test Center (CRTC) in Alaska by the June 14th deadline. The Oshkosh CATV offers built-in mission modularity to accommodate a variety of configurations to meet the US Army’s operational needs now and in the future.
The Bronco 3 is part of ST Engineering’s Bronco Family of Vehicle (FoV) has undergone more than 1,860 miles of performance testing in arctic conditions as well as over 200,000 miles in a theatre of operations on harsh desert terrain. The Oshkosh CATV prototypes will offer built-in mission modularity to accommodate a variety of configurations. A General Purpose vehicle, for example, can be used as a troop carrier, casualty evacuation (CASEVAC) or Command and Control vehicle and can be swapped from one configuration to another in the field within 30 minutes by a two-person crew.
In March 2021, the US Army announced the release of its Arctic Strategy: Regaining Arctic Dominance policy, which outlines how it will man, train, organise and equip forces as a great power competition heats up. Russia is amassing unprecedented military might in the Arctic and testing its newest weapons in a region freshly ice-free due to the climate emergency. Operating in the Arctic allows the U.S. Army to powerfully project forces to enhance their ability to respond in competition, crisis and/or conflict. The U.S. Army has announced plans to issue a follow-on production contract for up to 200 CATVs in FY22.