“This order signifies the successful testing of non-armored and armored vehicles that we conducted in 2018 and 2019,” said David Hartzell, president of Mack Defense. “We are proud that Mack Defense was chosen to fulfill the needs of the U.S. Army and support our armed forces.”
The U.S. Army signed the agreement Nov. 30, 2020 to purchase the Mack Granite-based HDT’s after Mack Defense completed two years of successful testing by the Army of 12 vehicles at Aberdeen Proving Grounds in Aberdeen, Maryland.
The trucks are based on the civilian Mack Granite model, however, the M917A3 HDT was spec’d with heavier-duty rear axles, all-wheel drive, increased suspension ride height and other features to meet the U.S. Army needs.
The trucks are manufactured at Mack Truck Lehigh Valley.
Initial deliveries of the Mack Defense M917A3 HDT will begin in May 2021.
Six armored Mack Granite Heavy Dump Trucks, made at Mack Lehigh Valley in Lower Macungie Township, have now been delivered for testing at the U.S. Army’s Aberdeen Test Center.
The delivery was part of the Production Vehicle Testing (PVT) phase of Mack Defense’s $296 million contract with the Army.
“Over the past several years, our teams have worked incredibly hard in partnership with the U.S. Army to develop, engineer and begin building these next generation trucks,” said David Hartzell, president of Mack Defense. “We’re confident the armored version will provide the operator protection levels required by the U.S. Army.”
The trucks will be tested for durability over the next 40 weeks. In addition, the trucks will undergo live-fire testing to determine occupant survivability.
“Throughout the PVT phase of the contract, the U.S. Army will provide feedback on how the trucks are performing,” said Jack Terefinko, Heavy Duty Testing program manager for Mack Defense. “That will allow us to continue to fine tune the program and ensure we’re meeting all requirements.”
The U.S. Army began soliciting bids for a new generation of HDTs in June 2017, seeking to offer increased protection levels, as well as higher payload capacity and improved mobility.
Mack Defense was awarded the contract in May 2018, which allows for Mack Defense to produce armor-capable or armored HDTs with deliveries through May 2025.
Based on the civilian Mack Granite model, Mack Defense engineered the trucks to meet the current needs of the U.S. Army, while also allowing for evolving requirements and future growth.
With heavier-duty rear axles, all-wheel drive and increased suspension ride height, the M917A3 model is designed to meet the demanding payload and mobility requirements set by the U.S. Army HDT program.
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