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Industry questions US Army's Stryker upgunning competition, Raytheon drops out

US Army officials were planning to receive six different versions of a Stryker DVHA1 outfitted with an XM813 cannon at Aberdeen Proving Grounds in Maryland this June. However, concerns over mushrooming requirements and evolving evaluation criteria has resulted in at least one company dropping out of the competition, Raytheon.

Billed as the Stryker Medium Caliber Weapons System (MCWS), the army is seeking to up-gun its Stryker fleet with a 30 mm cannon. In mid-2019, the service awarded six companies – EOS Defense Systems, General Dynamics Land Systems (GDLS), Kollsman, Leonardo DRS, Pratt & Miller Engineering and Fabrication, and Raytheon – with contracts valued up to USD150,000. Each company was also given a Stryker DVHA1 and an XM813 cannon, and tasked with building a ‘production-representative vehicle' that integrates a government-provided weapon station – which includes a fire-control system, ammunition-handling system, optics system, and a 30 mm XM813 gun – onto the Stryker vehicle.

Lexington Institute, a think-tank, first noted programme problems in mid-February and since then several industry sources have told Jane’s that they have either withdrawn from the competition or are considering dropping out because of evolving requirements and the service’s decision to change how it will evaluate the bids.

Although Jane’s reached out to all six companies and spoke with several industry sources who did not want their names or employer used, only one company, Raytheon, publicly confirmed that it had dropped out of the competition.

“We’ve decided not to pursue it, but we may be involved in other ways like producing sighting systems for the MCWS, but we are not part of the competition,” a Raytheon source told Jane’s on 24 February.

Stryker Infantry Carrier Vehicles make up the tactical action centre for the 2nd Cavalry Regiment during Dragoon Ready in Hohenfels, Germany, in 2018. The US Army is moving out with a new requirement to up-gun its Stryker ICVs with a 30 mm cannon, but companies competing for the contract are dropping out. (US Army)

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