The U.S. Army has awarded BAE Systems a contract worth $110.4 million to convert 36 M88A1 recovery vehicles to the M88A2 Heavy Equipment Recovery Combat Utility Lift Evacuation Systems (HERCULES) configuration.
“The HERCULES is an integral part of the U.S. Army’s Armored Brigade Combat Team (ABCT) and essential to its recovery missions as the fleet becomes heavier,” said John Tile, director of Recovery Programs at BAE Systems. “This award continues the Army’s stated objective to pure-fleet its M88s to the more capable HERCULES configuration.”
The fleet of ABCT vehicles is getting heavier, making it increasingly important that the recovery fleet is upgraded to support it. The HERCULES, which provides recovery support to soldiers in the field, is the only vehicle able to recover the M1 Abrams tank and the heaviest mine-resistant ambush protected (MRAP) variants in a combat environment.
The M88 plays a critical role in the company’s efforts to maintain the Combat Vehicle Industrial Base by supporting a team of highly skilled professionals and protecting the affordability of the Army’s combat vehicles. The support of Congress and the Army to protect these vital capabilities through M88 upgrades helps sustain the workforce at BAE Systems’ facilities and ensures that they will be available for future programs.
Work on the contract is expected to begin immediately by the existing workforce and will take place primarily at the company’s York, Pennsylvania, and Aiken, South Carolina, facilities. Deliveries will begin in January 2017 and continue through October 2017.