GM Defense, a subsidiary of Detroit’s General Motors Co., has started renovations at its Concord, N.C. facility to support the production of the Infantry Squad Vehicle, a light all-terrain troop carrier intended to transport a nine-soldier infantry squad.
The facility will produce the vehicles for the U.S. Army as part of a $214.3 million contract awarded to GM Defense in June. GM Defense delivered the first of these vehicles in October, 120 days from contract award.
Construction at the 75,000-square-foot facility is expected to continue into early spring, and the production line will begin delivering vehicles in April. As GM Defense ramps to full-rate production, the facility will help to manufacture 649 vehicles and will support the production of up to 2,065 vehicles with additional authorization over eight years. The program is the first major award for GM Defense since the subsidiary was re-established by GM in 2017.
“We have tremendous momentum behind our ISV win, featuring a first-of-its-kind tactical wheeled vehicle that gives our soldiers speed, durability, and performance to enhance mission success,” says Tim Herrick, interim president of GM Defense. “GM Defense is responsible for the design, engineering, and manufacturing of the ISV. This facility will enable us to meet our customer’s timeline for delivery while continuing our journey to bring commercial technologies and transformative mobility solutions to the defense market.”
The vehicle is based on the 2020 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 midsize truck architecture and leverages 90 percent commercial-off-the-shelf parts, including Chevrolet Performance race components. The 5,000-pound vehicle is light enough to be sling loaded from a UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter and compact enough to fit inside a CH-47 Chinook helicopter for air transportability. Its rollover protection system will provide agile transportability in battle.
The facility is near Hendrick Motorsports, which brings its experience developing race cars for high-load, high-risk environments. Hendrick will provide the chrome-moly steel exoskeleton of the vehicle frame.
GM Defense also has a teaming agreement with Ricardo Defense, which will lead to the integrated product support for the vehicle, including technical manual development, new equipment testing, provisioning, total package fielding, and field service support.