The US Marine Corps is currently testing a new Amphibious Combat Vehicle (ACV) equipped with a PROTECTOR remote turret (RT-20) developed by Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace.

This turret is part of the Amphibious Combat Vehicle 30mm Cannon (ACV-30), the third variant for the ACV family of vehicles. BAE Systems, the prime contractor since 2018, delivered the first production representative test vehicle (PRTV) to the U.S. Marine Corps earlier this year. 

While the vehicle was already designed with multiple weapon mounts for machine guns, the newly delivered test vehicle is now equipped with a stabilised, medium-calibre Remote Turret System designed by Kongsberg, intended to enhance both the lethality and protection capability for marine operations. 

Jørgen Bull, Vice President of land systems at Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace, highlighted the turret’s modern, digital features. “The Protector RT-20 is a modern remotely operated turret with highly accurate firepower for wheeled, tracked, and robotic combat vehicles. The modularity and digitalisation of the system has growth potential to incorporate new technologies to deter and defeat future threats,” said Bull.

The ACV-30 is the latest model in the series of ACV that BAE Systems has been developing since being appointed the primary contractor for the programme in 2018, when BAE Systems received a $198m contract for the initial delivery of 30 ACV, with an option to deliver up to 204 vehicles worth $1.2bn.

This remote turret design allows for increased troop and equipment capacity by eliminating the space typically needed for traditional turreted systems, with a reduction in weight and consequent increased mobility.

Garrett Lacaillade, Vice President of the amphibious vehicles product line for BAE Systems, emphasised the importance of delivering vehicles like the ACV-30 to the Marine Corps. “Delivering capability like the ACV-30 to the US Marine Corps remains critical in the ever-changing battle space,” said Lacaillade. “The collaboration we have with Kongsberg on this PRTV enables our customer to see and test a modern and lethal firepower technology on the battlefield.”

The ACV-30 is part of BAE Systems’ broader strategy to offer amphibious vehicles that are capable of open-ocean operations and land mobility. In April 2024, BAE announced it had received an $79m contract from the US Marine Corps to build and PRTV for the Amphibious Combat Vehicle Recovery (ACV-R) variant, to provide direct field support, maintenance, and recovery to the ACV family of vehicles.