The US Army is continuing the upgrade of the M88A1 heavy-lift vehicles under a $148.3m contract.

Under the contract, BAE Systems will upgrade 43 M88A1 vehicles to the M88A2 Heavy Equipment Recovery Combat Utility Lift System (HERCULES) configuration.

The modernisation of the vehicles will provide power, manoeuvrability and survivability.

The M88 family of vehicles help the army in evacuating damaged or stranded combat vehicles from the battlefield.

BAE Systems Recovery Programs director Dennis Hancock said: “The HERCULES is an invaluable vehicle for the Army’s recovery missions.

“We are proud to support the army’s recovery needs and we will continue to work alongside the army to provide upgraded solutions as their missions and requirements change.”

The US Army has plans to procure a total of 933 M88A2 vehicles.

The M88A2 can tow and hoist the Armored Brigade Combat Team’s (ABCT) 70t tracked vehicles.

It provides enhanced horsepower and armoured protection. The upgraded vehicle features armoured track skirts and applique armour panels.

The upgrade will deliver quick manoeuvrability to the vehicle to move the stranded vehicles to safety.

With this contract, the total number of M88A2 vehicles procured by the Army will increase to 914.

BAE Systems will perform work under this contract at its facilities in York in Pennsylvania, Aiken in South Carolina, Anniston in Alabama, and Sterling Heights in Michigan.

The company will begin deliveries in February 2021.

Last month, the army awarded a contract to the company to upgrade the M88A2 HERCULES vehicles to the M88A3 configuration.