The U.S. Marine Corps uses the MaxxPro armored fighting vehicle to travel around combat zones in Iraq and Afghanistan and safely guard against landmines and other explosive devices.
Mine Resistant Vehicle
Officially known as the International MaxxPro MRAP, the armored fighting vehicle is designed by the U.S. company Navistar Defense and is used to safely shuttle American soldiers around combat zones and protect them from landmines and improvised explosive devices (IEDs). The vehicles are characterized by heavy armaments and armor, and can weigh as much as 14 tons. The MaxxPro is also used as an ambulance to carry wounded soldiers to safety during combat.
The heavy weight of the MaxxPro requires that the vehicles be equipped with 375 horsepower engines and dual rear wheels that allow for increased loads. The MaxxPro utilizes a V-shaped hull that deflects blasts away from the vehicle and protects soldiers riding inside. Originally, only two of the heavily armored vehicles were developed for military testing in 2007. However, the U.S. military has since ordered 1,200 of the MaxxPro armored fighting vehicles – for use by the U.S. Army and U.S. Marine Corps.
Lighter and Faster Model
In September 2008, the U.S. Marine Corps ordered production of a lighter, smaller and faster version of the MaxxPro vehicle known as the "MaxxPro Dash." About 800 of the quicker and more nimble vehicles have been ordered. The U.S. military also hopes that the smaller MaxxPro Dash vehicles will be less likely to rollover – a problem that has afflicted the original MaxxPro. Other countries that use the MaxxPro armored fighting vehicle include Greece, Poland and Singapore.