Sept. 29 (UPI) -- The Marine Corps will soon receive the amphibious combat vehicle, which will replace the amphibious assault vehicle as it's phased out through the 2020s.
"This is truly a significant moment, given the many years the Marine Corps has invested in trying to replace the AAV," Col. Kirk Mullins, program manager for Advanced Amphibious Assault at Program Executive Officer Land Systems, which approved fielding of the ACV in late September, said in a Marine Corps press release.
PEO Land Systems approved fielding of the ACV in late September, and the Corps will start delivering the first ACVs to Marines starting in October.
The service plans to develop, procure and field three ACV variants that specialize in command and control, recovery operations and increased firepower.
As of February, when the Navy awarded BAE Systems with a $113.5 million contract to add 26 vehicles to its ACV program, the Marines had a total of 116 ACVs on order.
The ACV is designed to provide armored transport for infantry personnel traveling from ship to a shore, combining open-ocean amphibious capabilities with land mobility, according to officials.
"While we still have work ahead of us, this is a historical first step toward delivering this materiel capability to our Marines, which is what our mission is all about," Mullins said.