The US Army's 401st Army Field Support Brigade (AFSB) and Joint Program Office Mine Resistant Ambush Protected-Operation Enduring Freedom (JPO MRAP-OEF) have successfully completed a survivability upgrade of more than 1,100 MaxxPro Dash vehicles in Afghanistan.
Carried out since December 2012, the upgrade involved integration of an energy displacement frame rail, transmission retention bracket, front and rear Jankel seats, and cab support beams to help enhance the operator survivability during improvised explosive device (IED) blasts.
Additional enhancements included installation of front and rear Skydex blast mats, crew ripple floors, seam plates, rear wall retention brackets, as well as upgraded rear suspension springs.
The upgraded vehicles were either swapped on a one-for-one basis or handed over to the US and coalition forces.
JPO MRAP-OEF project-manager lieutenant colonel Elliott Caggins said: ''The MaxxPro survivability upgrade, or MSU, was an effort to increase the survivability of the MaxxPro vehicle and it did exponentially.''
The 401st AFSB Support Operations officer-in-charge major Ken Hoisington said: ''It increases the underbody blast protection performance, and that is a 75% upgrade of survivability.''
The MSU kits were supplied by Navistar Defense, along with spare parts and support services, under a $282m contract awarded by the army in September 2012.
The upgrade work was carried out at six sites in Afghanistan: Bagram Airfield, Kandahar Airfield, Forward Operating Base (FOB) Shank, FOB Sharana, FOB Fenty and FOB Salerno.
A lighter and mobile variant of the basic MaxxPro MRAP vehicle, the MaxxPro Dash is an up-armoured vehicle designed to withstand ballistic arms fire, mine blasts and roadside bomb attacks in the battlefield.
The vehicle is extensively used by the US and coalition forces in Afghanistan.
Image: A MaxxPro Dash MRAP vehicle of the US Military. Photo: courtesy of Yarnalgo.