GM Defense, a General Motors subsidiary focused on military vehicle development, is nearly ready for mass production of its first vehicle, the GM Infantry Squad Vehicle. The US Army awarded a $214 million contract to GM Defense and part of the funds go to building these mean machines for US troops to field wherever they're deployed.
On Thursday, GM Defense said work started on renovating an existing GM building in Concord, North Carolina, that will be home to the ISV. The companythis past October, but the new facility will build at least 649 of the vehicles on the road to delivering a few thousand of them for the US Army. The contract authorizes the army to purchase additional units within an eight-year window as well.
The final vehicle is really a testament to GM engineers across the US since 90% of the ISV's components come from vehicles the automaker currently produces. That includes Chevrolet Performance racing parts. If the machine has any family resemblance you can point out, it's because the ISV is based on the . But though it holds close ties to the pickup you can buy at any Chevy dealership today, the 5,000-pound ISV is engineered for the military -- especially for rapid deployment. It's small enough to fit inside a CH-47 Chinook helicopter and light enough for sling loading on a UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter.
We'll see more of these vehicles as the months go on, but it's truly a new chapter for the GM's reborn military division.