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Improved Outer Tactical Vest

The Interceptor Multi-Threat Body Armor System uses an Outer Tactical Vest (OTV) to hold bullet-stopping ceramic plates (SAPI/ESAPI) as described on the linked pages. Responding to complaints about the fit and comfort of the Interceptor OTV, PEO Soldier (Program Executive Office) fielded the Improved Outer Tactical Vest (IOTV) in April of 2007. The IOTV is designed to fit Soldiers better by utilizing multiple adjustment points that improve weight distribution and reduce bulk. With all it's improvements, the IOTV is up to 3.8 pounds lighter and more protective than the Outer Tactical Vest it replaces.

Interceptor Multi-Threat Body Armor System, Improved Outer Tactical Vest (IOTV)
Interceptor Multi-Threat Body Armor System, Improved Outer Tactical Vest (IOTV)

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Interceptor Improved Outer Tactical Vest (IOTV)

Sgt. Brian Freeman pulls the quick-release cable on Sgt. William Huff’s Improved
Outer Tactical Vest (IOTV) during training, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division, Baumholder, Germany, 23 January 2008
Sgt. Brian Freeman pulls the quick-release cable on Sgt. William Huff’s Improved Outer Tactical Vest (IOTV) during training, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division, Baumholder, Germany, 23 January 2008.

The Interceptor Improved Outer Tactical Vest (IOTV) meets PEO Soldier's goals of providing the most advanced protective gear available while also improving comfort and mission effectiveness. By combining the improvements already implemented for the OTV, along with additional improvements, IOTV provides at least equal protection over a larger body area while its weight is reduced by more than three pounds.

The IOTV is a result of R&D that began with a PEO Soldier body armor industry day in the spring of 2006. Seventeen vendors came forward with designs for improved body armor, and six were selected to provide prototypes for a user evaluation conducted in January and February 2007, followed by field testing at Fort Lewis, WA.

Description of the Improved Outer Tactical Vest (IOTV)

Compared to the original Interceptor OTV, the IOTV has a higher cut in the underarm area, which will eliminate the need to attach the axillary or underarm protector to the OTV deltoid axillary protector set. The OTV deltoid and/or groin protector can still be attached at the commander's discretion. The vest's integrated throat protector provides the same protection as the OTV attachable version, but is designed to be more comfortable. The now integrated side plate carriers decrease the vest's profile, and a lower back protector extends the IOTV's coverage by 52 square inches.

For emergency situations, IOTV features a single-stage quick release added to the front of the vest that allows a Soldier to remove the IOTV and its attachments with one pull. The vest then falls to the ground in two pieces. Medics can use the quick release to treat wounded Soldiers, or they could use an opening on the left shoulder of the IOTV, which allows easy access while still providing protection to the patient. IOTV can be reassembled in minutes for reuse.

Additional IOTV improvements include:

  • A long variant has been added to sizes medium, large and x-large, extending the size range from eight to eleven for a near-custom fit
  • Enhanced SAPI/ESAPI pockets with four inches of vertical adjustability allow for better placement of the plates based on individual body proportions
  • An internal waistband provides a snug fit that moves much of the weight from the shoulders to the waist
  • A mesh liner improves ventilation and increases comfort in hot weather
  • IOTV opens on the sides, unlike the front-opening OTV
  • IOTV is equipped with additional MOLLE PALS attachments
  • IOTV is equipped with additional storage pockets

The IOTV uses the same SAPI/ESAPI plates as the OTV. With all inserts and plates, the total Interceptor Body Armor system weight with the IOTV, size medium, is 30 pounds, compared with 33.11 pounds with an OTV.

The eleven sizes of the Improved Outer Tactical Vest (IOTV) come only in the universal camouflage pattern, stocked under these NSNs:

X-Small 8470-01-551-7640
Small 8470-01-551-7642
Medium 8470-01-551-7643
Medium Long 8470-01-551-7647
Large 8470-01-551-7648
Large Long 8470-01-551-7652
X-Large 8470-01-551-7653
X-Large Long 8470-01-551-7654
XX-Large 8470-01-551-7655
XXX-Large 8470-01-551-7656
XXXX-Large 8470-01-551-7658