The military-spec High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV, or Humvee) has had a long and honorable lifespan, for sure. But there's no arguing that American troops in Iraq, Afghanistan or anywhere else the U.S. military is active need a new vehicle that's been designed and built to counter modern warfare tactics.
This being the case, it's not terribly surprising to hear that the final 2,620 Humvees have been ordered from Mishawaka, Indiana-based AM General by the U.S. Army. In total, AM General has produced 240,000 Humvees since 1985.
Just as the Humvee replaced the original military Jeep some 25 years ago, today's replacement is seen as a response to a revised set of needs in the battlefield, not the least of which is adequate protection from improvised explosive devices, or IEDs. More than 1,700 U.S. troops have died in Iraq alone from IEDs as of last month, and the military is responding by switching to Mine Resistant Ambush Protected vehicles, or MRAPs, and the M-ATV from Oshkosh.
The Humvee story isn't yet over, however, as the Army, Navy, Marine Corps and Air Force still have many of them in service. What's more, the Army's latest budget includes nearly a billion dollars to maintain its existing fleet of Humvees. Also keep in mind that the Humvees used for military purposes are not the same as those sold under the civilian Hummer brand, which General Motors is still working to sell to Sichuan Tengzhong Heavy Industrial Machinery of China. For more Humvee goodness, check out the high-res gallery below. All photos are courtesy U.S. Army.