The initial Paladin Integrated Management program, or PIM, award is worth $195 million but could eventually be worth $688 million, the company said.
"The award is a significant milestone for both BAE Systems and the U.S. Army," said Mark Signorelli, vice president and general manager of Combat Vehicles at BAE Systems. "The PIM team, the program office, BAE Systems, and our suppliers have been working cooperatively throughout the engineering, manufacturing, and development phase of the program to ensure that the Army will field a highly capable howitzer on time and below budget."
The PIM design includes a new chassis, engine, transmission, suspension, steering system, and improved survivability, while the vehicle's cannon remains the same. It also includes a power generation capability that integrates electric elevation and traverse drives, an electric rammer, and a digital fire control system.
Under low-rate initial production 18.5 vehicle sets -- 19 PIM howitzers and 18 PIM carrier ammunition vehicles -- will be manufactured by the company.
BAE Systems said the Army plans on acquisition of a total of 66.5 vehicle sets. The first vehicles manufactured under the contract will be delivered to the Army in 2015.
Theater accidentally screens 'Nymphomaniac' trailer instead of Disney's 'Frozen'
Caroline Berg Eriksen: Soccer player's wife triggers debate with post-birth selfie