Thursday, September 01, 2016

JLTV Recon Variant to sport 30mm cannon? The US Army's first "miss" since its turn to preparing for a peer fight.

Thanks to Pete for the link!

vehicle shown is the Oshkosh Light All Terrain Vehicle...its similar enough to the JLTV to almost be a twin.

via Fox News.
Col. William T. Nuckols Jr., director of mounted requirements at the Army’s Maneuver Center of Excellence (MCOE) at Fort Benning, Ga., says the shift to new vehicles is a great opportunity for scout platoons to upgrade from the Humvees’ M2 .50-caliber gun.
“The design work for [the M2] was started in 1917 by General John Pershing,” he explained. “I don’t want to bash it; it’s the best heavy machine gun in the world, but technology has continued to move.”
Nuckols explained that, while scouts’ primary role is reconnaissance, they need heavy firepower when they run into enemy forces. “In a chance encounter scouts will be looking to engage the enemy, then disengage as quickly as possible,” he said.
A version of the M230-LF 30-mm. cannon used on Apache helicopters would significantly boost scout platoons’ weaponry, according to Nuckols, citing the cannon’s devastating explosive rounds.
“Having an exploding bullet is good when you’re facing enemy soldiers who are in a vehicle or behind a wall,” he said. “Anytime we can shoot bullets that explode, versus bullets that don’t explode, that’s a good thing.”
The M230’s 30-mm. rounds also cause much greater damage over long distances than the M2’s 12.7 mm bullets. Whereas the .50-caliber bullet can pierce just 7/8ths of an inch of armor at 100 meters, the 30-mm. round can penetrate 1.37 inches of armor at 500 meters, according to Nuckols. “At 1,500 meters, it actually goes up to [penetrating] 1.7 inches [of armor],” he added.
This is the Army's first certified miss since they started prepping to fight a peer opponent.  What do I mean?  The JLTV has the ride height of an MRAP, weighs more than a Humvee and its gonna depend on a 30mm cannon for those chance encounters with enemy forces?

Total miss.  The vehicle is wrong.  The focus on firepower is wrong.  Ignoring sensors so that they can conduct surveillance at distance from cover is wrong!

Above you see the Spanish Army solution to the Recon Vehicle issue.  Is it perfect?  Far from it.  Is it a better idea than what we're seeing from the US Army?  I personally think so.  Notice that mast mounted sensors?  They're focusing on missing those "chance engagements" while still succeeding at their mission of gathering intel on the enemy.

As strange as it might seem, I wonder if the Army is swinging a bit too far back to the direct fire solution meme for dealing with future threats.

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