$650.1M for 4,526 Hummers
While orders and shipments of blast-resistant MRAP vehicles continue to roll, the flat-bottomed, vulnerable, but lighter Hummers remain the core of the US wheeled vehicle fleet. They are still seeing extensive use on the front lines, and the early wear created by the weight of their add-on armor has led to RESET maintenance programs for some Hummers and allied giveaways for others.
The US Army had about 19,000 HMMWV vehicles in Iraq alone in mid-2007, and even accelerating shipments of MRAPs have only reached 5,200+ to all services throughout all of CENTCOM as of April 2008. As Hummers wear out and are given away, or sent to a depot, they must be replaced. Some replacement involves cycling vehicles from other units into theater, but those units must eventually have their lost vehicles replaced with Hummers or with something else, in order to maintain their own readiness rates for deployment. Hence the necessity for ongoing buys of more Hummers, in the absence of a plan to provide immediate replacements on a fleet-wide basis.
AM General, LLC in South Bend, IN recently received a $650.1 million firm-fixed price contract for 4,526 HMMWVs of various types. That’s about $144,000 per Hummer, compared with the $500-550 thousand average for more survivable MRAP vehicles. Note that this is not the final cost, however, as all vehicles will also receive expensive additional equipment like electronics, mounted weapons, up-armoring kits, et. al. after they’re produced. Production be performed in Mishawaka, IN and is expected to be complete by Dec 31/09. One bid was solicited on March 17/06 by US Army TACOM in Warren, MI (DAAE07-01-C-S0001).
UPDATE: In May 2008, another 3,216 Hummers for $522.4 million.