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The US Army has awarded Lockheed Martin a USD 451 million (EUR 419 million) contract to recapitalise additional M270 Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (MLRS), expanding its domestic fleet of launchers and providing upgrades for global partners, Lockheed Martin announced on 8 May 2024.

The award follows an initial agreement issued in 2019 and subsequent contracts calling for recapitalisation to support mission readiness through to 2050.

“The modernisation effort will add additional capability to the combat-proven launcher and ensure the M270-series launcher remains highly effective, reliable and interoperable with NATO forces for decades to come,” Jay Price, vice president of precision fires for Lockheed Martin, was quoted as saying in a company press release.

“The procurement will bring additional precision fires capability to our global partners,” Price added.

Recapitalisation of the M270 systems includes complete overhauls and upgrades to the systems with brand new engines, improved armoured cabs and the new Common Fire Control System (CFCS), which will provide compatibility with the current and future MLRS Family of Munitions (MFOM).

The MLRS is a heavy tracked mobile launcher, transportable via C-17 and C-5 airlifters, that fires Guided MLRS rockets and Army Tactical Missile System missiles. Upgraded MLRS systems will also be able to fire Lockheed Martin’s next-generation Extended-Range Guided MLRS round and Precision Strike Missile (PrSM), both currently in development. These rounds can only currently be fired by M270A2 and M142 High-Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) launchers.

The US Army’s MLRS recapitalisation effort will eventually upgrade its existing fleet of 225 MLRS M270A1 launchers and 160 decommissioned M270A0 launchers to the M270A2 standard.

Upgraded M270 systems will be able to fire Extended-Range Guided MLRS rounds and Precision Strike Missiles. (Photo: Lockheed Martin)