The Army is planning to reduce its procurement of Joint Light Tactical Vehicles (JLTV)  beginning in FY ’20 after including the program among its list of lower priorities that will have funds shifted away to fund development of its future weapon systems.

Under Secretary Ryan McCarthy on Wednesday confirmed the the Army will lower requirements for JLTV, built by Oshkosh Defense [OSK], after including plans in its budget request to drop procurement by nearly 1,000 vehicles, from 3,393 units in FY ’19 to 2,530 in FY ’20.

“We clearly have more capability than we need. We’re locking in on that [JLTV] number, and we’ll publish that,” McCarthy said at the McAleese Conference on Wednesday.

The Army delivered its first JLTV in January and its officials announced in February plans to drop a market survey for the program’s follow-on competition in the near future (Defense Daily, Feb. 5).

“We are not aware of any steps taken by the U.S. Army to adjust their approved acquisition objective for JLTVs,” George Mansfield, Oshkosh Defense’s vice president for joint programs, told Defense Daily. “We do know that the JLTV is the only light tactical vehicle that offers the protection and extreme off-road mobility necessary to maneuver within combat formations against near peer threats.”

Mansfield noted that the Marine Corps has previously announced plans to increase their own acquisition objective by 65 percent, from 5,500 vehicles to 9,091 units.

McCarthy confirmed that JLTV was among the 186 programs the Army either cut or downgraded in its effort to find $33 billion to shift from lower priorities to its modernization programs.

During a Tuesday briefing following the release of the Army’s $182.3 billion FY ’20 budget request, McCarthy noted the Army’s tactical vehicle fleet will reach over 100,000 vehicles when accounting for JLTV, Humvees and the Infantry Squad Vehicle, which he said led to the truncated JLTV in FY ’20.

Oshkosh was awarded a $6.7 billion JLTV production contract in 2015 for 17,000 vehicles, and the Army has indicated it is eventually seeking to split its vehicle fleet between 49,000 JLTVs and 55,000 Humvees.

Lt. Gen James Pasquarette, the G-8 deputy chief of staff, on Tuesday at the conference added that the Army right now plans to still buy the same number of JLTVs but the program will now be “stretched to the right” to ensure funds in the out years are now able to be allocated for modernization programs. 

A full-rate production on Oshkosh’s current contract, which runs through 2023, is expected this spring.

Col. Shane Fullmer, project manager for JLTV, told Defense Daily at a Tactical Wheeled Vehicle conference in February the Army had to previously double maintenance training for JLTV to address earlier operational issues (Defense Daily, Feb. 4).