Home Americas The US Army is giving up on its Stryker Mobile Gun Systems

The US Army is giving up on its Stryker Mobile Gun Systems

Stryker MGS with 105mm tank gun
Stryker MGS in Germany. Photo: US Army

The US Army has decided to divest all Stryker Mobile Gun Systems following a comprehensive analysis which highlighted obsolescence and systemic issues with the system’s dated cannon and automatic loader.

The service said the vehicle that played a prominent role in Iraq and Afghanistan would be retired by the end of fiscal year 2022.

After reviewing concerns and vulnerabilities of the Stryker MGS, Army officials made the decision to invest in other substantial modernization efforts to improve the lethality, survivability, maneuverability and maintainability of the rest of the Stryker fleet.

New and upgraded lethality efforts such as the Medium Caliber Weapons System, the Common Remotely Operated Weapons Station–Javelin, Anti-Tank Guided Missile updates, and the 30 mm cannon provide a better distributed capability than the limited number of Stryker MGSs, the Army said. All of these enhancements have been developed and funded, and are ready to be fielded.

“Decisions on when it is best to divest a system currently in the force are not taken lightly,” said LTG James F. Pasquarette, Army Deputy Chief of Staff, G-8 (Programs). “The Army has done its due diligence to ensure lethality upgrades will remain intact to provide our Stryker formations the capabilities they need in the future.”

In the early 2000s when it was developed, the Stryker MGS was state-of-the-art technology with the 105mm tank gun. For over 15 years, the Stryker MGS has enabled Stryker brigade combat teams to provide direct supporting fires to assault infantry by destroying or suppressing hardened enemy bunkers, machine guns and sniper positions in urban, restricted and open-rolling terrain.

It was the first Army system fielded with an autoloader, but over time it has become costly to maintain. In addition, the lethality capabilities provided by the Stryker MGS were based on the flat-bottom chassis, and the system was never upgraded against more modern threats such as improvised explosive devices or anti-tank mines.

The Army said it would continue to support and field different variants of the Stryker platform, including the Double V-Hull and Lethality vehicles, until the MGS is fully divested. Last year, the service awarded General Dynamics Land Systems a $2.47 billion contract for the production of upgraded Stryker Double V-Hull A1 engineering change proposal vehicles. The configuration will provide improved survivability against mines and improvised explosive devices.

In April this year, Germany-based 5th Battalion, 4th Air Defense Artillery Regiment (5-4 ADA) became the first Army unit to field the Mobile Short Range Air Defense (M-SHORAD) systems.

The Army is also preparing to test a new 50 kilowatt (kW)-class laser mounted on Stryker vehicles as a means of addressing the increasing and changing threats from unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) and rockets, artillery and mortars (RAM). The service is yet to provide an update on the first tests that were scheduled to take place this spring.