Army releases draft RFP for OMFV preliminary design phase

By Ashley Tressel / July 17, 2020 at 11:51 AM

The Army is taking one more step to collect industry feedback on the first phase of its Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle program before releasing a request for proposals for a preliminary design.

The service today released a draft RFP for the program's preliminary design phase, in which up to five contractors will complete digital designs for a preliminary design review.

"As we continue to progress through the first phase of our five-phased approach for the OMFV program, communication, inclusive feedback and innovative thinking from industry remains key," Program Executive Officer for Ground Combat Systems Maj. Gen. Brian Cummings said in an Army press release. "We are looking forward to receiving feedback and learning from industry what's in the realm of the possible as we continue to develop this truly transformational vehicle for our soldiers."

The draft RFP will be open for 40 days, and the feedback received will help shape additional industry engagements and ultimately the final RFP to start Phase 2, the service says.

"Accurately defining the desired set of capabilities without over-constraining the design is critically important," Brig. Gen. Ross Coffman, director of the Next Generation Combat Vehicles Cross-Functional Team, said in the release. "The Army is committed to open communication with industry to ensure the characteristics and eventual requirements of the OMFV are informed by technological advances."

The service says it is avoiding being overly prescriptive upfront by inviting industry members to provide early insight into desired characteristics, an effort to avoid mistakes made in the OMFV program's initial attempt, which ended with the Army canceling and reopening the competition earlier this year.

The Army in April released findings from its first round of industry sessions, which it called a "narrative," in place of an in-person industry day due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

The final RFP for the preliminary digital design phase is planned to result in the award of up to five contracts in June of 2021 under a full and open competition, the service says.