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United States could cancel the EFV Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle program budgetary reason 060111-1.

| 2011
Defense News - United States

Thursday, January 6, 2011, 10:00 AM

United States could cancel the EFV Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle program for budgetary reason.
Defense Secretary Robert Gates was "poised to cancel" the EFV Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle program early Jan. 6, when defense officials said he would announce new budget cuts amid heavy political pressure to reduce the Pentagon's budget, The New York Times reported.

Officials with the EFV program and Marine Corps headquarters declined to comment on the reports, referring comment to Gates' staff. Col. David Lapan, a Pentagon spokesman, declined to comment on budget cut rumors Jan. 5.

After widespread technical failures, though, the Corps scrapped its existing plans for the project in 2007 and restarted the program's entire development and demonstration phase, a move that cost nearly $1 billion. The complete cost of the program has jumped from about $8.4 billion in 2000 to more than $13 billion, even though the number of vehicles to be purchased was slashed almost in half, from 1,013 to 573.

Video EFV Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle Amphibious tracked armoured vehicle


Marine Corps officials defended the EFV frequently after it passed a critical design review in December 2008 that allowed its development to continue. More recently, however, they said it wasn't necessarily the EFV itself that was critical, but the ability to storm beaches at high speeds quickly.

Cancellation rumors come as the EFV program makes progress on the testing of seven new prototype vehicles it received last year to replace aged vehicles that had been in testing for years. Reliability testing has been ongoing at the Amphibious Vehicle Test Branch at Camp Pendleton, Calif., and was expected to wrap up late this month, said Manny Pacheco, a program spokesman.

The testing plan calls for the program to conduct a combined 500 hours of testing on four EFV prototypes, and demonstrate that the vehicles last an average of at least 16.4 hours between breakdowns to meet "Knowledge Point 2" and progress to the next level of testing.

Early unofficial test results show that the prototypes at Pendleton have lasted more than 20 hours between system failures, Pacheco said. The ultimate goal was for each EFV to last at least 43.5 hours per breakdown before initial fielding in 2013.

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