QinetiQ has announced it has been awarded two contracts by the US Office of Naval Research to develop its proprietary hub drive unit electric propulsion system and long travel suspension for use in armoured reconnaissance vehicles.

The Office of Naval Research awarded 16 contracts: two of which went to QinetiQ to enable the first phase of development for its electric hub drive unit and long travel suspension technologies. QinetiQ was the only organisation from outside North America to have received contracts.

QinetiQ say that its electric hub drive unit technology, which combines a compact electric motor with a multi-stage gear box and integral brake, has been conceived to overcome the functional drawbacks associated with single-speed and fixed-speed hub drives for military application. The firm say that its ability to operate at either high output speed or high output torque enables combined improvements in operational and tactical mobility.

Trent Shackelford, Vice President of Business Development at QinetiQ Inc. said:

“The demands of warfare continue to evolve rapidly and all fighting forces are looking to technology to deliver the operational advantages of lethality, mobility and survivability to their warfighters. 

Our hub drive unit and long travel suspension deliver these advantages by significantly increasing the available internal space inside a combat vehicle, offering vehicle architecture that enables greater protection to its occupants. In addition, the significantly improved performance, flexibility in changing ride height and enhanced amphibious capabilities are critical for improved mobility.

We are extremely proud that an organisation as prestigious as the Office of Naval Research has recognised our expertise and 25 year track record of developing hybrid-electric technology for military vehicles, which will continue to help our customers modernise their fleets and ensure they are operationally ready to face evolving threats now and in the future.”

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David Taylor
David Taylor
2 years ago

The more interesting news it that the US are out to buy a light tanks.


2 years ago
Reply to  David Taylor

More than that. NGCV includes Abrams replacement, Bradley replacement, stryker replacement, unmanned fighting vehicle and the Mobile Protected Firepower light tank you mentioned. Its pretty obvious now why we aren’t just replacing Warrior with an Ajax IFV despite the upgrade programme problems. I’d say its a done deal that we’ll buy the Abrams replacement as our Challenger 2 replacement and the Bradley replacement as our Warrior replacement. Possibly the light tank as well. The Bradley replacement is due to enter service in 2026, just eight years away now. US mass produced vehicles end up so cheap that the final product… Read more »