The US Marine Corps (USMC) Programme Executive Office - Land Systems has exercised options under a contract awarded to Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) to support its assault amphibious vehicle (AAV) upgrade programme.
As part of the prime contract signed in May last year, SAIC is responsible for engineering, designing and test upgrading of ten prototypes and 52 low-rate initial production (LRIP) vehicles.
The initial $16m, multiple award included options for prototype vehicle builds and trials, followed by a LRIP.
SAIC Navy and Marine Corps Customer Group senior vice-president and general manager Tom Watson said: "This significant win demonstrates SAIC's ingenuity to meet the demands of our customers and to serve the mission interests of the USMC.
"SAIC is honoured to have the opportunity to support the USMC on this highly important programme to ensure the safety and amphibious mission success of our nation's marines."
The contract value has increased to $69m and, if all options are exercised, will rise to approximately $194m over five years.
Work includes armour and engine rebuilds to enhance horsepower and torque, replacement of ageing transmission, modernisation of suspension components and new water jets and blast-resistant seats, as well as upgrades to vehicle control, instrumentation and driver interface systems.
SAIC will carry out upgrade works primarily at its facility in Charleston, South Carolina, US.
AAVs are capable of attacking any shoreline from the well decks of navy assault ships and can carry marines and cargo through hostile environments.
Image: USMC AAV in Iraq. Photo: courtesy of the US military.