Industry attention may be focused on the recent bid solicitation for the Medium Support Vehicle System-Standard Military Pattern program and the much anticipated word on the future of Close Combat Vehicle program, but there has been a flurry of activity around smaller vehicle programs.

On Monday, National Defence gave notice that it intends to procure 22 Marginal Terrain Vehicles (MTV) for worldwide use and asked industry for information “on availability of technology, ability for industry to deliver and cost estimates for the initial acquisition of the required MTV capability.” The information will be used to refine planning documents as the department ramps up to a request for proposals. No timelines were provided for the program.

Last week, DND issued an Advance Contract Award Notice for theoretical and practical military tactical vehicle mobility fundamentals training. Unless other bidders step forward, a US$44,140.00 contract will go to Nevada Automotive Test Center of Carson City, Nevada for on- and off-road vehicle mobility fundamentals training of nine technical staff.

The contract is part of the Logistics Vehicle Modernization (LVM) Project, a program to replace the existing light and heavy logistics vehicles and associated equipment that is currently in the option analysis phase. The training of engineers, technicians and other technical staff will help with crafting the eventual statement of requirements for the project. The closing date for statements of capabilities is September 3.

And over the weekend, the Canadian Press reported that the Canadian Army had been test-driving a “stealth” snowmobile under varying snow conditions at CFB Petawawa. The new hybrid-electric snowmobile prototype is being evaluated for speed, noise level, battery endurance and acceleration. Two years ago, Defence Research and Development Canada issued a tender for prototypes. Although few specifics were provided at the time, DRDC did emphasize silence as a requirement.

According to documents obtained by CP under the Access to Information Act, “These experiments compared [the snowmobile] against commercially available snowmobiles already in use, testing a wide variety of the snowmobiles’ characteristics, including speed, towing capacity, endurance, mobility, usability, and of course, noise emissions.” The evaluators noted however that the CF lacks a standard set of snowmobile requirements against which to evaluate the prototype. A DRDC spokesperson told CP the “testing and evaluations are ongoing.” According to CP, the winning prototype came from CrossChasm Technologies of Waterloo, Ont.