Cougar (vehicle)

The Cougar is a MRAP and infantry mobility vehicle structured to be resistant to landmines and improvised munitions.

It is a family of armored vehicles produced by Force Protection Inc, which manufactures ballistic and mine-protected vehicles. The vehicles are integrated by Spartan Motors. These vehicles are protected against small arms, land mines and improvised explosive devices (IEDs) using a combination of design features and materials to protect both the crew and engine compartment against a wide range of attacks. A Monocoque type, V-shaped hull extends to the engine bay and serves to direct the blast away from under the vehicle. The dual air-conditioners help keep heavily dressed troops from overheating in temperatures over 100 °F (38 °C) in Iraq.

Cougar (vehicle)
Class Vehicle
Type Infantry Combat Vehicle
Manufacturer Force Protection Inc
Origin United States of America
Country Name Origin Year
United States of America 2002
Country Name Operational Year Retirement Year
Canada View
Croatia View
Denmark View
Djibouti View
Georgia View
Hungary View
Iraq View
Italy View
Pakistan View
Poland View
Romania View
Ukraine View
United Kingdom - UK (Great Britain) View
United States of America View
ManufacturerName Production From Production To Quantity
Force Protection Inc 2002 View

Technical Solutions Group was a defense company in the US which was involved in a range of products, including mine-resistant vehicles based on South African designs. A few vehicles were sold to the US Army for evaluation, and a small fleet of heavily protected vehicles were sold to the British Army in 2001. Technical Solutions was purchased in 2002 by Sonic Jet and the combined company renamed itself Force Protection Inc in 2004.

In 2004, the new Cougar was designed by a small British-led team in the US at Force Protection, Inc., in response to an urgent requirement by the US Marine Corps. This was a new design, developed in the US, based on an evolution of vehicle mine-protection technology used by the South African Army and Rhodesian Security Forces since the 1970s. The very first sketches of the new vehicle were made in late March 2004 in response to those initial USMC inquiries. The rapid development and production that followed was based upon the USMC request that the first vehicle be delivered within 6 months of an order - which was subsequently placed in mid-April 2004 for 27 units.

The new design was called Cougar to provide a degree of continuity with the older designs, but had little in common with them. The former vehicles were almost entirely non-compliant with NATO standards for protection, human factors and safety, which made those designs obsolete. The Cougar was effectively a totally new vehicle which incorporated the latest US-made enhancements, a new hull design and structure, as well as built-in growth potential, including dimensions that allowed for the addition of the latest armor and protection systems.

After leaving the factory the first vehicle was only trialed by doing some circuits of the company campus and trundling over a few rocks. Urgent operational requirements dictated that the first unit be shipped to theater as fast as possible and those involved in the project decided that the risk of doing so was outweighed by the advantages of having the vehicle available. The Cougar was fully trialed when it became part of the MRAP program.

The first Cougars were called HEV (hardened engineer vehicle), which became JERRV when the Army joined the program, and then MRAP for political reasons when the requirement for many thousands of units was issued.

Some 4,000 of these vehicles were fielded under the US military's MRAP (Mine Resistant Ambush Protected) and other vehicle programs. US Defense secretary Robert Gates demanded that the vehicles be ordered in larger numbers after the Marines reported in 2004 that no troops had died in more than 300 IED attacks on Cougars. Since then, Cougar vehicles have been hit by improvised explosive devices (IEDs) many times in Iraq with few fatalities. Britain chose the Cougar over the RG-31 Nyala for their "Mastiff" APV.

As of December 2011, the Pentagon plans to add the Crows II remote weapon station and the Frag Kit 6 anti-EFP armor.

Cougar HE
Type Infantry Mobility Vehicle
Place of origin United States
Service history
Used by See Operators
Wars Iraq War
War in Afghanistan
War in Donbass
Production history
Designer Technical Solutions South Africa
Manufacturer Force Protection Industries
Unit cost $475,000
Produced 2002
Variants See Variants
Specifications
Weight Curb: 32,000 lb (14.5 t)
Gross max: 38,000 lb (17.2 t)
Length 19.41 ft (5.91 m)
Width 9.0 ft (2.74 m)
Height 8.67 ft (2.64 m)
Crew 2+4
Armor Classified
Main
armament
Optional remote weapon station(Common Remotely Operated Weapon System II)
Secondary
armament
Optional firing ports
Engine Caterpillar C-7 Diesel I6
330 HP (243 kW)
Payload capacity 6,000 lb (2.72 t)
Transmission Allison 3500SP automatic
Suspension 4×4 wheeled
Ground clearance 15 in (410 mm)
Operational
range
600 mi (966 km)
Speed 65 mph (105 km/h)


Cougar HE
Place of origin United States
Service history
Used by United States Armed Forces
British Army
Wars Iraq War
Production history
Designer Technical Solutions (South Africa)
Manufacturer Force Protection Industries
Unit cost $644,000
Produced 2002
Variants Cougar H
Specifications
Weight Curb: 38,000 lb (17.2 t)
Gross max: 49,000 lb (22.2 t)[3]
Mastiff: 50,000 lb (22.7 t) maximum
Length 7.08 m (23.25 ft)
Width 2.74 m (9.0 ft)
Height 2.64 m (8.67 ft)
Crew 2+10
Armor allround protected from .50 cal
Main
armament
Optional remote weapon station(Common Remotely Operated Weapon System II)
Secondary
armament
Optional firing ports
Engine Caterpillar C-7 Diesel I6
243 kW (330 hp)
Payload capacity 13,000 lb (5.90 t)
Transmission Allison 3500SP automatic
Suspension 6x6 wheeled
Ground clearance 15 in (410 mm)
Operational
range
600 miles (966 km)
Speed 65 mph (105 km/h)

End notes