WASHINGTON, 7 Oct. 2008.BAE Systems unveiled its new Caiman Light vehicle at the 2008 Association of the United States Army (AUSA) Annual Meeting and Exposition in Washington this week. The "Caiman Light" or CLT is a five-man, 4X4 version of the 6X6 Caiman Mine Resistant Ambush Protected Vehicle (MRAP).
Caiman Light is a member of the Family of Medium Tactical Vehicles (FMTV). The platform offers protection comparable to the 18 ton Caiman at two-thirds the weight. It also comes standard with electronic stability controls and can be built with rear steering, which gives it a less-than 20-foot turning radius, company officials say.
The BAE Systems facility in Fairfield, Ohio, which manufactures the Caiman Light, designed and fabricated the 4X4 light hull using the proven 6X6's hull as a guide. The armored hull has transparent armor, a door assist systems, and a turret.
The armored hulls are shipped to the BAE Systems facility in Sealy, Texas, where they are mounted on the drive trains and chassis. Seats, dashboard equipment, and other interior and exterior equipment are added on the final assembly line.
The Caiman Light's final assembly is on the same assembly line as the FMTV in Sealy. A full 85 percent of the parts are common to CLT, the Caiman, and the FMTV. The high percentage of common parts reduces the logistics burden and operating and support costs for the Army, BAE Systems officials say. Common parts between the Caiman, CLT, and the FMTV include major components such as engines, transmissions, power trains, tires, and cabs.