The US Army has revised rules for companies competing for the construction of next-generation ground combat vehicles.

The new rules are intended to increase the focus on affordability and flexibility, after the previous competition was cancelled in late August 2010.

The revised request for proposals sets an affordability cost target of $9m to $10.5m to produce each vehicle, and bidding companies are required to submit proposals by 21 January 2011.

The revamped rules highlight the army’s priorities in terms of capabilities and the ability of the new vehicle to carry nine soldiers and their equipments to the battlefield.

The US Army’s programme manager for the vehicle Colonel Anthony DiMarco said the new plan had the approval of top Army and Pentagon acquisition officials.

The Army plans to acquire 1,874 of the new vehicles, beginning in seven years time, and also hopes to award three contracts, each valued at $450m in April 2011.

The prime contractors expected to bid are SAICI.UL, BAE and GD with Lockheed, Boeing and Raytheon as subcontractors.