The US Army TACOM Life-Cycle Management Command has awarded a contract to BAE Systems for the refurbishment of 417 M113 vehicles.

Under the $32m contract, the company will replace old and damaged equipment with updated components and restore the vehicles to pre-combat condition.

BAE’s heavy brigade combat team systems vice-president, Joe McCarthy, said the M113 played a significant role in both urban combat and peacekeeping roles for the militaries of at least 44 countries around the world.

“Replacing war-torn equipment and providing our customers with the modern systems they need to work on the battlefield is absolutely crucial to the militaries worldwide that use this vehicle,” he said.

The M113 is a fully tracked armoured personnel carrier that can transport 12 troops and a driver and is capable of amphibious operation, extended cross-country travel over rough terrain and high-speed operation on improved roads and highways.

Renovation work on the vehicles will be carried out at the company’s facility in Alabama. It is expected to be complete by December 2010.