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Polaris pitching 6×6 light tactical vehicle to USMC, special operations forces

This 6×6 Polaris Alpha variant is the first the company has designed in nearly a decade. (Polaris)

Vehicle specialist Polaris Government and Defense is developing a 6×6 variant of its MRZR Alpha light tactical vehicle (LTV) as it explores concepts to increase payload capacity for infantry, marine, and special operations forces (SOF).

Speaking to Janes, company officials described how the decision to start development of the 6×6 vehicle had initially been made 18 months ago. Since then, Polaris has modified a 4×4 Alpha into a 6×6 variant as an initial showcase for potential customers. A “more mature” technology demonstrator is expected to be displayed at Modern Day Marine and SOF Week 2024.

The new vehicle design was originally devised as a “fun, stretch project”, according to Polaris's director of engineering Shane Novotny and Alpha's lead engineer John LaFata. The engineering team wanted to expand the performance and payload of the platform, which Novotny said is already the “most advanced offroad military vehicle the company has made”.

Polaris explained to Janes that the concept vehicle has been shown to some customers, and the company is building on interest, which has grown from these demonstrations. Novotny added how customers could take advantage of increased levels in payload, explaining customers will benefit from “even more payload to help fill the gap between MRZRs and the JLTV [Joint LTV]”.

Polaris designed its first Ranger 6×6 utility vehicle in 1999 but this is the first in nearly a decade, the pair confirmed on 29 June. The Alpha 6×6 will feature 90% commonality with the two- and four-seat MRZR Alpha 4×4 models.

At the SOF Week 2023 conference

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