Ripsaw (vehicle)

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TypeLight tank
Place of originUnited States
Service history
Used byUnited States Army
Production history
DesignerHowe & Howe Technologies
ManufacturerHowe & Howe Technologies
Unit cost$250,000
VariantsMS1 (unmanned), MS2 (driver optional)
Mass9,000 lb (4,100 kg)
Height70 in (180 cm)

ArmorNone (aluminum frame)
EngineDuramax V8 engine
750 hp (760 PS; 560 kW)
Payload capacity2,000 lb (910 kg)
Suspension16 in (410 mm) travel
Ground clearance24 in (610 mm)
Speed65 mph (105 km/h)

The Ripsaw is a developmental unmanned light tank designed and built by Howe & Howe Technologies for evaluation by the United States Army.[1]

The Howe brothers started the Ripsaw as a small family project in 2000. They introduced it at a Dallas vehicle show in 2001, where it caught the interest of the U.S. Army. Later that year the U.S. Military ordered a prototype MS-1 to be made and shipped to Iraq.[citation needed]

The Ripsaw is intended to perform various missions including convoy protection, perimeter defense, surveillance, rescue, border patrol, crowd control, and explosive ordnance disposal. For perimeter defense or crowd control, a belt of M5 Modular Crowd Control Munitions (MCCM) can be mounted around the vehicle to break up crowds or non-lethally engage personnel with flash-bang effects and rubber bullets. Cameras provide 360-degree coverage for situational awareness for the operator.[2][3]

The Army has tested the Ripsaw while remote-controlled by a soldier in another armored vehicle up to 1 km (0.62 mi) away. Its weapon system is modified to fire remotely using the Advanced Remote Armament System (ARAS), a gun that self-loads its own ammunition and can swap out various types of ammunition, such as lethal and non-lethal, in just a few seconds. These capabilities allow manned vehicles to send the Ripsaw out in front of them and engage targets without exposing soldiers to threats.[4] As of March 2017, the Army is still testing the vehicle as an unmanned platform to test remote weapons stations.[5]


  • Ripsaw UGV (non-militarized) prototype could accelerate to 65 mph (105 km/h) in about 3.5 seconds, since it was lighter, but it wasn’t as strong/rugged.
  • Ripsaw MS1 tactical UGV utilizes a powerful oversized and customized 650-horsepower (660 PS; 480 kW) Duramax 6.6L V8 diesel engine that delivers 900 ft⋅lbf (1,200 N⋅m) of torque.[6] The Ripsaw MS1 was a test platform made to test off-road capabilities. It was exclusively unmanned, cost $200,000 and could accelerate from 0–65 mph (0–105 km/h) in 3 seconds.[2][3]
  • Ripsaw MS2 UGV is made to be larger, faster, and more modular than the MS1. It weighs 4.5 short tons (4.1 t) and can carry a one-short-ton (0.91 t) payload. The lightweight tubular chassis design is powered by a 6.6 liter duramax diesel engine generating 600 horsepower (610 PS; 450 kW) and 1,000 ft⋅lbf (1,400 N⋅m) of torque. Fully loaded, the MS2 can accelerate from 0–50 mph (0–80 km/h) in 5.5 seconds and has a top speed of 60 mph (97 km/h). The vehicle can traverse 50 degree gradients and 45 degree slopes. It can be optionally manned or tele-operated from a nearby command vehicle. Armament can include an M240 machine gun or M2 .50-caliber machine gun, and it has been tested with the Javelin missile. If the Ripsaw is damaged or destroyed, parts can be "cannibalized" in the field and re-assembled quickly. An MS2 vehicle costs $750,000.[2][3]
  • Ripsaw MS3 UGV is being tested by United States Army Research, Development and Engineering Command under the Remote Armed Maneuver Platform (RAMP) initiative to integrate the M153 CROWS remote weapon system onto an unmanned vehicle.[7] RAMP was demonstrated at Fort Benning, Georgia in October 2013 as part of the Army's Armed Unmanned Ground Vehicle (AUGV) program.[8]
  • Ripsaw EV2 is a luxury version, with a fully enclosed body and two seats inside the cab. It can exceed speeds of over 60 mph (97 km/h) and has a range of approximately 300 miles (480 km). It is currently unknown if the EV2 can mount remotely-operated weapon systems or not. This model is designed for the civilian market but still costs $295,000 with customisable features.[9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Teel, Roger A.. "Ripsaw demonstrates capabilities at APG." The United States Army Homepage. N.p., 16 July 2010. Web. 4 Aug. 2010. <>.
  2. ^ a b c Weaponized RipSaw-MS2 UGV Evaluated for Convoy Security & Support -, 14 December 2009
  3. ^ a b c A 9,000-Pound Tank That’s Faster Than a Ferrari -, 25 September 2013
  4. ^ Ripsaw could lead Soldiers into battle someday -, 6 May 2015
  5. ^ Army Still Testing Ripsaw, the ‘Luxury Super Tank’ -, 21 March 2017
  6. ^ "Ripsaw." Howe & Howe Technologies. N.p., n.d. Web. 4 Aug. 2010. <>.
  7. ^ Remote Armed Maneuver Platform
  8. ^ UGV models face off over firepower, load carrying -, 12 October 2013
  9. ^ "Howe and Howe unveils Ripsaw EV-2 "luxury tank"". 26 May 2015.