The Humvee, once an American icon for better or worse, has been down and out on home turf. The company behind the officially titled High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle, AM General, lost its military contract to Oshkosh Corporation back in 2015, while its civilian Hummer (which they sold to General Motors in the ‘90s) flamed out in 2010.
Now it looks like they’re ready for a comeback, with something called the NXT 360.
Unveiled this week at Eurosatory in Paris, an international defense and security trade show, the light tactical vehicle's most obivous trait is that it looks like, well, an old Humvee. That is, caricaturish masculinity incarnate.
But for those looking to drop them in warzones, how will these fare compared to the notoriously outdated predecessors?
AM General highlights three areas of improvement: mobility, payload and survivability.
To accomplish this, they’ve added a 6.5L turbocharged V8 equipped with 250 HP, 460 ft-lbs. of torque and a possible top speed of 100 MPH. The payload capacity has been increased to 15,500 lbs., and it's also got dual air compressors for quick tire-pressure changes.
But the most important features are in the beefed-up defense capabilities, including 360-degree B7 protection (basically, protection against armor-piercing bullets) and blast protection in the wheels, seats and mats. Oh, and let’s not forget the howitzer kit.
For those with older models looking for an update, AM General notes that “the NXT 360 can be delivered as [a] complete new vehicle that can be incorporated into new missions, or as an upgrade kit that can be integrated into existing vehicle fleets to gain the same advanced capabilities.”
But that’s unfortunately where the liability is: How can you call this a next-generation tactical vehicle when it’s similar enough to the old model that “the same advanced capabilities” can be slapped on via a kit?
If you want a more in-depth look, here are AM General’s VPs of International Operations and Engineering talking through the vehicle at Eurosatory: