Strykers in the news

First Stryker brigade proving its worth in Iraq

Army Public Affairs has a good write-up of the Stryker Brigade. Among the points:

  • The brigade has earned the nickname “Ghost Riders” from Iraqi citizens because the wheeled vehicles are so much quieter and faster than tracked vehicles.
  • Despite the success so far of the add-on slat armor against RPG attacks, the Army is working on reactive armor kits for the Strykers
  • The reactive armor kits would be pre-positioned and applied as needed
  • The first brigade with reactive armor will be fielded next March (the 172nd Separate Infantry Brigade?)
  • The second operational Stryker brigade, the 1st Brigade, 25th Infantry Division, is undergoing its Initial Operational Capabilities evaluation and should be ready to go this summer
  • The 172nd Brigade will be next, followed by the 2nd Armored Cavalry Regiment (which currently uses armored Humvees)
  • One improvement that will be made is lengthening the sensor mast on the Recon Stryker for better, um, sensing
  • Surprise! Surprise! The Near-Term Digital Radios are going to be replaced. They have been a source of complaints since before the current brigade began testing last spring.
  • There apparently are logistical and maintenance benefits so far due to the common vehicle system as the Army hoped – 160 lines of spares instead of the typical 300
  • Operational readiness has been above 90%

So far, so good. The Stryker seems to be performing at least as well as the Army hoped and far, far better than the vehicles detractors predicted. The brigade hasn’t been involved in a serious battle so far, though, so the jury is still out. But all indications seem to be good.