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Combat Vehicle Evaluation

In an effort to ensure that combat vehicles are combat ready, the Department of the Army established the Combat Vehicle Evaluation (CVE) program. Under CVE, vehicles are inspected to identify those most likely to qualify for overhaul at the depot level because of severe hull damage. Army Regulation 750–1, Army Materiel Maintenance Policy, states—

Combat vehicles will be selected as candidates for recapitalization and overhaul during peacetime . . . Combat vehicles reaching a mileage or hour interval prescribed by [the Army Materiel Command] will be inspected by depot-level teams to identify vehicles requiring overhaul.

Combat vehicles that have not reached the prescribed mileage or hour threshold but are overhaul candidates may be nominated by the appropriate major command for evaluation.

CVE is administered by the Tank-automotive and Armaments Life Cycle Management Command (TACOM LCMC) in Warren, Michigan.

CVE Initiation

A typical evaluation is requested by the installation or division CVE manager. The TACOM LCMC CVE program also can initiate evaluations. When requesting CVE evaluation, the unit should provide model, serial number, USA (U.S. Army) number, overhaul data, and bumper number to the installation CVE manager. [The USA number is a vehicle registration number assigned to each vehicle and piece of equipment in the Army. This number indicates the vehicle type and serial number of the equipment.] The installation CVE manager then will contact the TACOM LCMC CVE office for further information and instructions.

A letter of agreement stating the inspection parameters and scheduling the inspections is prepared between the installation or division and the CVE program. The CVE program uses the information on the models, serial numbers, and other pertinent information to help determine the number of CVE personnel needed to conduct the inspections.

CVE Inspection

A CVE team from the TACOM LCMC travels to the requesting unit’s location to inspect and evaluate the vehicles and determine their condition.

The CVE inspectors look for defects in the hull—dents, gouges, holes, warping, and broken or fractured welds. They also look for faults in turret operation and unserviceable, burned, or oil-soaked wiring harnesses and connectors. The inspectors document the location, description, and size of each defect.

A point system is used to determine if a vehicle qualifies for depot-level repairs. CVE inspectors use a voice-recognition device that verbally asks specific questions and assigns point values to answers. When the tally is completed, a report of all vehicles inspected, along with the serial numbers of those eligible for overhaul, is sent to the command, the vehicles’ item manager, the overhaul depot, and the unit that owns the vehicles. Vehicles rated with the required number of points are sent to the depot for overhaul at a time determined by the major end item manager.

Nomination of Other Vehicles for Repair

A major command can nominate vehicles not meeting threshold requirements when the following conditions exist—

• The vehicle is not reparable below the depot level.
• The vehicle has experienced documented excessive maintenance or supply downtime.
• The vehicle has extensive fire or accident damage.
The CVE program manager alone or the CVE quality assurance team member and the CVE program manager together will make this determination.

CVE is a cost-saving and manpower-reduction program that helps to ensure that combat vehicles are in top condition by identifying those vehicles that need major hull depot repairs and informing the appropriate personnel of needed attention. Anyone who needs more information on the CVE program should forward all inquiries by e-mail to cve@tacom.army.mil.

Louis J. Gorenc is an equipment specialist with the Combat Vehicle Evaluation Team at the Tank-automotive and Armaments Life Cycle Management Command Integrated Logistics Support Center. He has a bachelor's degree in criminal justice administration from Concordia College in Michigan.