Defense Media Network

General Dynamics Land Systems Debuts Tracked Stryker Concept

General Dynamics Land Systems (GDLS) used this month’s Association of the United States Army (AUSA) annual meeting in Washington, D.C. to spotlight their development of a new “Tracked Stryker” concept vehicle.

Designated “Stryker + Tr” by the contractor, the concept was apparently developed to provide a medium-weight tracked option for the Army’s emerging Armored Multi Purpose Vehicle (AMPV) effort.

“When we first looked at a way of approaching the requirement we modeled and simulated about 10 different configurations – everything from putting band track over the wheels to half-track-like vehicles, to full track width, to changing the tire sizes,” said Don Kotchman, vice president for the heavy brigade combat team at GDLS. “We ran those through our simulation models and at the end a tracked vehicle approach represented by what we are doing here is what came out to provide the greatest utility for the Army.”

AMPV will serve as the replacement platform for the Army’s aging fleet of M113 series platforms. The Army has conducted an Analysis of Alternatives to support the AMPV effort, with that AoA helping to feed any resulting acquisition program.

Tracked Stryker 2 SG

Another view of the tracked Stryker concept unveiled at AUSA 2012. The narrow tracks conform to the existing roadwheels of the Stryker, but a future development will likely have wider tracks, six roadwheels per side instead of four, and more horsepower to drive a vehicle almost twice the weight of the wheeled Stryker. Photo by Scott R. Gourley

According to GDLS representatives at the AUSA annual meeting, emerging Army requirements led some to believe that the Army may seek a tracked vehicle solution to fill the AMPV role. That belief led the company to look for a tracked solution that could be called “non developmental.”

The concept that emerged involved creating a tracked mobility design for a modified Stryker Double-V Hull.

“When we first looked at a way of approaching the requirement we modeled and simulated about 10 different configurations – everything from putting band track over the wheels to half-track-like vehicles, to full track width, to changing the tire sizes,” said Don Kotchman, vice president for the heavy brigade combat team at GDLS. “We ran those through our simulation models and at the end a tracked vehicle approach represented by what we are doing here is what came out to provide the greatest utility for the Army.”

“And we were time-limited, because we were not sure when the RFP [request for proposals] was going to come out for AMPV,” added Mike Cannon, senior vice president for Ground Combat Systems at GDLS. “We gave ourselves a one year window. This was a concept just to make sure that we could do it. And then our continued design work is ongoing, so we’ll start ‘bending metal’ here real soon.”

Moving beyond the hydraulically-driven concept vehicle to a more representative “Tracked Stryker” prototype design will reportedly include additional road wheels, wider track, and other changes to the vehicle hull.

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Scott Gourley is a former U.S. Army officer and the author of more than 1,500...

  • Why not just build Gavins until the end of time? This a proven, wildly successful design that is far from obsolete, it’s just not “trendy”. All it needs for IED proofing is a V-shaped bottom. It can swim, it can be airdropped, it can be fit with machine guns, turret, anti-tank missles, recoilless rifles, mortar, electronics, but has always been “replaced” with something that weighs twice as much and ten times as expensive, or an uparmored humvee that costs more than an old M113 and isn’t as tough. Old Vietnam ACAV with 3 gunners 1x.50 + 2×7.62 still has more firepower than Stryker with just one remote 7.62 gun. It should have been used to replace the Sheridan as a air-drop capable light tank fitted with guided or unguided rockets for fire support.

  • The M113 isn’t “tough”, it’s a coffin that you can play dress-me-up with the latest frills.

    The M113 is fine when it doesn’t see actual combat. But just in case you didn’t read the article, they are looking at the possibility of making an even heavier stryker variant because of the amount of combat it is seeing.

    We still use M113′s, lots of them. And guess what? We aren’t using them for the things we are using strykers and bradleys for. There are reasons for this. They each have a purpose. There are things we need a pot for, and you are suggesting a pan. Have you even considered the response you would get, if you suggested to the people that actually have to sit in a stryker, that they should use a M113 instead? Try it some time. You might learn to not be so opinionated about things you don’t have to deal with.

  • Chuck Oldham (Editor)

    The M1126 Stryker ICV usually carries a .50 cal in the remote weapon system up top, and although a 7.62 mm is an option for that system, so is a MK 19 40 mm grenade launcher. The M1128 mobile gun system variant carries a 105 mm gun. Let’s see an M113 do that.