In this third part of our Polaris MRZR LTATV (Light Tactical All-Terrain Vehicle) story, Carl Schulze focuses on the technology and detail.
The US 82nd Airborne Division MRZR-4 LTATV, as seen here mostly during CJOAX 15-01 at Fort Bragg in North Carolina, features a tubular frame with D-pillars that improve rigidity. Attached to this frame are front and rear tubular bumpers and an underbody skid plate. The roll cage of the MRZR can be collapsed without using tools in order to reduce its overall height for transportation inside military helicopters.
The 2015 specification vehicle was powered by a Polaris Prostar 900 2-cylinder, 4-stroke petrol engine with electronic fuel injection and a displacement of 875cc, though a little more recently a diesel engine version (MRZR-D4) was introduced; UK Royal Marines use the diesel variant. The original petrol engine, which develops 88hp and allows the vehicle to reach a top speed of 96km/hr, is installed at the rear of the vehicle. It is connected to a continuously variable transmission with the settings Park, Reverse, Neutral, Low and High. The fuel tank has a capacity of 27.4 litres allowing it to cover a considerable distance.
The front wheels feature dual A-arm type suspension that incorporates FOX Podium 2.5 coil-over shock absorbers. The suspension of the rear wheels also incorporates the same type of shock absorbers, but is of the trailing arm type. Wheel travel on all four wheel stations is 318mm. The manufacturer gives a ground clearance of 286 mm for the LTATV-4, thus it can negotiate even rough terrain. Electronic power steering makes the life of the driver easy.
The driver and passenger are seated on padded bucket seats and the rear seats are foldable. The latter feature minimal padding to allow for increased occupant space and easier ingress and egress. All four seats are fitted with four point safety belts with quick release latches, manufactured by Master Craft Safety. Driver controls include, among others, the steering wheel, brake and accelerator pedal, automatic transmission shift lever, rear axle / all wheel drive selection switch, headlight switch, blackout light switch, starter button, speedometer, tachometer, odometer, gear indicator, fuel gauge and hi-temp and low-battery warning lights. Lighting equipment includes LED headlights, rear running lights and brake lights as well as a robust and waterproof infrared illuminator manufactured by Adventure Lights Incorporated, installed on the front bumper.
For self recovery purposes the MRZR-4 LTATV is fitted with a Polaris HD 3,500 LB winch with a 15.2m long winch cable and a single line pull capacity of 1,586kg. This winch is installed at the front of the vehicle below the two lashing / towing eyes. Two further lashing eyes can be found at the rear of the vehicle, where a towing hitch is also mounted. The vehicle can tow trailers with a gross weight of up to 680kg (see Part One). Two more tie-down points with shackles on each side of the vehicle allow it to be secured in aircraft and onto Heavy Drop Platforms if being inserted by parachute.
The standard MRZR-4 LTATV is not large enough to accept a standard weapons ring of the type found on heavier vehicles such as the Hum-vee but swing arm machine gun mounts can be, and usually are, installed in front of the passenger seat or attached to the roll cage for operation by the soldiers in the back seats. These mounts can accommodate either a 5.56x45mm M249 Squad Assault Weapon or a 7.62x51mm M240B General Purpose Machine Gun.
To be continued…
[images © Carl Schulze unless noted]
- Polaris MRZR LTATV ~ Part One
- Polaris MRZR LTATV ~ Part Two
- Polaris MRZR LTATV ~ Part Three
- Polaris MRZR LTATV ~ Part Four