The US Mobile Tactical Vehicle Light

The US Mobile Tactical Vehicle Light

The The US Mobile Tactical Vehicle Light (MTVL) is an improved stretched out M113A3 APC, creating a larger internal volume, improved suspension and bigger engine. This means larger and better gunned turrets can be mounted, the ability to carry appliqué armour for better protection on the existing welded aluminium structure, as well as a bigger payload can be carried (supplies or increased number of troops).

The MTVL was developed by the now BAE Systems, Ground Systems Division (at that time United Defense) as a private venture with the first prototype being completed at its San Jose facility in 1994.


The MTVL has been fitted with appliqué armour hardened titanium plates, which gives the vehicle protection against up to 23mm armour piercing rounds.


The US Mobile Tactical Vehicle Light

Just like all other M113, the commanders cupola can be mounted with either a 7.62mm (.30cal) or 12.7mm (.50cal) Machine gun or an automatic grenade launcher.

The vehicle, unlike the other smaller M113 series, can be mounted with a M2 Bradley turret, which is equipped with a M242 25mm “Bushmaster” Chain Gun and wire guided TOW Anti-Tank Missile system.

Like other APC series, the vehicle can carry a mortar on a turntable, however the increased internal volume means rather than an 88mm mortar, the vehicle can accommodate a larger 120mm, so the crew can fire it under armoured protection.


The MTVL features an upgraded engine, the 400hp 6V53TIA Detroit Diesel and a reconfigured suspension.  To accommodate the increase in size, the vehicle is fitted with a 6th road wheel.

The US Mobile Tactical Vehicle Light Variants

Mobile Tactical Vehicle Recovery (MTVR)

For the Canadian M113LE programme, the now BAE Systems, Ground Systems Division has developed a recovery vehicle based on the MTVL chassis in order to provide a recovery capability for units equipped with light armoured vehicles. The MTVR shares all automotive components and mobility characteristics with the MTVL.

Mobile Tactical Vehicle Engineer (MTVE)

The MTVE incorporates the Canadian Specially Equipped Vehicle (SEV) kit into the MTVL chassis and entered production in Canada in 2002. All of the Canadian MTVE vehicles are being converted from existing M113 SEV vehicles. A total of 28 units are being supplied to Canada.

Mobile Tactical Vehicle Cargo (MTVC)

The MTVC variant of the MTVL has been developed and produced for the Canadian M113LE programme to transport supplies, equipment and ammunition pallets in support of combat operations. It provides improved cargo carrying capabilities over the standard production M548 and provides autonomous material handling capability with the addition of the crane.

Mobile Tactical Vehicle Fitter (MTVF)

The MTVF is essentially the MTVC except that it has thicker cargo bed plates and is equipped with storage cabinets, generator, compressor and air tools, so that it is more suited for fitter and repair roles.

MTVL with Band Track

In conjunction with the design and testing of a Band Track for the M113, Band Track has been developed, and testing on the MTVL commenced in March 2001.

The rubber Band Track offers the user a number of significant advantages over conventional tracks, including a reduction in vibration, infra-red signature, reduction in noise and weight.

120 mm AMS on MTVL

Shown for the first time in September 1995 was the second example of the 120 mm Armored Mortar System (AMS) installed on the chassis of the Mobile Tactical Vehicle Light (MTVL) full-tracked armoured vehicle. Production of the first-generation AMS has been completed.

Combat Engineer Squad Vehicle

The Combat Engineer Squad Vehicle (CESV) has been proposed to the US Army Engineers. It is based on the current in-service M113A3 series APC and would be rebuilt to expand its internal volume. In many respects the CESV is identical to the MTVL.

The US Mobile Tactical Vehicle Light Operators

Using M113 common components ensures high reliability, availability and maintainability plus a proven design, common maintenance techniques and an established logistics support base, the vehicle can either be an upgrade for existing M113’s or a new build. All of these factors rolled in to one has offered an attractive package for existing M113 operators.


M113 APCLE (APC Life Extension) – Under the APCLE program, 341 Canadian M113A2 series vehicles will be refurbished: 183 will be the stretched MTVL version (6 road wheels) and the remaining 158 will be vehicles upgraded to the M113A3 (retaining 5 road wheels).


Egyptian Infantry Fighting Vehicle Light (EIFV) – please separte entry (click here).