Army resumes FMTV A2 testing

By Ethan Sterenfeld / January 22, 2021 at 10:58 AM

The Army resumed production verification testing Jan. 11 on the newest version of the Family of Medium Tactical Vehicles after an eight-month delay, according to Wolfgang Petermann, project manager for transportation systems in the Program Executive Office for Combat Support & Combat Service Support.

Testing was halted last May due to reliability concerns with the newest version of the vehicle, the FMTV A2. The Army plans to buy as many as 2,400 FMTV A2s, Inside Defense reported at the time.

The vehicle made it 50,000 miles into the 170,000-mile production verification test in May before reliability issues led to the stoppage, Petermann said in a statement released by the PEO.

"Shakedown" testing resumed in November after Oshkosh Defense, the contractor on the A2, fixed the reliability problems, Petermann said. Oshkosh paid for 19,000 miles of testing before government-funded testing restarted.

"We anticipate no additional schedule and/or budget impacts due to items identified when testing was initially paused," Petermann wrote.

Oshkosh redesigned the A2's hydraulic system and made "design changes" to the high-pressure gas pump, which allows the suspension to change its height more quickly, according to Petermann. Additional changes included upgraded suspension leveling software, a new hose material to prevent coolant leaks and a new door handle.

"Most of the test incidents and operator feedback relate to the desire for automatic suspension leveling and faster suspension height adjustment," he wrote.

The next round of testing, follow-on test and evaluation, is scheduled for Jan. 2022, according to Petermann.

A recent report from the Pentagon's top weapons tester, released Jan. 13, warned of the potential for additional delays. Follow-on test and evaluation was delayed by six months once the reliability problems were revealed.

"This delay may not provide sufficient time for the program to fix FMTV A2 failures, complete performance testing, and verify the FMTV A2 variants met reliability requirements prior to the FOT&E," the report warned.