The US Marine Corps (USMC) has awarded a $3.5m contract to Lockheed Martin to perform an eight-month evaluation programme on its Havoc 8×8 vehicle.

During the assessment period, conducted as part of the Marine Personnel Carrier programme, USMC will check the vehicle’s amphibious capabilities and human factors at the Amphibious Vehicle Test Branch at Camp Pendleton, California, US.

Additional safety and protection evaluations will be conducted at the Nevada Automotive Test Center in Carson City, Nevada, US.

Lockheed Martin’s Missiles and Fire Control business vice president of ground vehicles Scott Greene said; "Our Havoc 8×8 is a low-risk, combat-proven solution that is in service with six countries and manufactured on multiple, active production lines."

Derived from the Patria Land Systems’ 8×8 Armoured Modular Vehicle, the Havoc 8×8 vehicle has already been deployed in Afghanistan and is currently in production for European armed forces.

The Havoc 8×8 vehicle’s design, including technology and protection systems, will be modified by the company to suit USMC requirements.

"Lockheed Martin has extensive experience integrating advanced C4ISR, weapons and protection systems for armored vehicles," Greene added.

"Havoc will provide the Marines with high degrees of mobility and protection while being simple to operate and maintain in challenging conditions."

Designed with a modular ballistic protection system, the multi-mission expeditionary ground combat vehicle is capable of protecting troops against ballistic threats ranging from high-blast force levels to large-calibre kinetic threats.

The company currently has more than 1,200 vehicles on order.

Image: Havoc 8×8 is based on Patria Land Systems’ 8×8 Armoured Modular Vehicle. Photo: Courtesy of Ex13.