Leonardo DRS and Israel’s Rafael have received a $79.6 million TROPHY active protection system order for Army and Marine Corps Abrams tanks, the companies said Tuesday, as they continue to push a lighter version of the capability for Bradleys and Strykers.
The latest deal for the TROPHY APS brings the total value of the program to over $200 million, as the Army continues to outfit its Abrams tanks with a mature, ready-for-deployment anti-tank missile capability.
“Leonardo DRS is proud of the confidence shown by the Army in deciding to field TROPHY to even more U.S. combat brigades,” Aaron Hankins, vice president of Leonardo DRS’ land systems division, said in a statement. “Together with our Rafael partners, we are fully committed to meeting our customers’ demands and are working in parallel to further address the urgent protection needs of other U.S. platforms.”
The two companies received an initial $193 million in June of last year to begin integrating TROPHY to meet an immediate need for a system to protect the tanks against anti-tank guided missiles and rocket propelled grenades (Defense Daily, June 26).
Army officials last August told reporters the TROPHY program was back on schedule to start fielding Abrams outfitted with the APS by 2020 after the program had suffered setbacks due to the heavy capability’s propensity to knock the turret off balance (Defense Daily, Aug. 24).
Leonardo DRS and Rafael officials said the company plans to continue pushing a lighter version of the capability, the TROPHY VPS, for the Army’s Bradleys and Strykers.
“Rafael does not stand still. TROPHY VPS provides the same capabilities and performance as TROPHY in a significantly smaller package,” Moshe Elazar, head of Rafael’s land and naval division, said in a statement.
Officials have previously demonstrated the TROPHY VPS on a Bradley fighting vehicle at a series of live-fire qualifications in Israel (Defense Daily, Sept. 24).
The updated TROPHY VPS is 40 percent lighter than its APS counterpart and is specifically designed for the smaller vehicles.
The Army will test the lighter system on Strykers at an upcoming demonstration in February, according to company officials.
Army officials did not immediately respond to requests to specify the number of TROPHY APS units purchased and when deliveries will begin.
Ashley John, public affairs director for the Next Generation Combat Vehicle cross-functional team, told Defense Daily in December the Army intends to purchase the Iron First APS, built by Israel’s IMI Systems, for its Bradleys (Defense Daily, Dec. 14).