"Tony, don't be jealous."
"No, it's subtle, all the bells and whistles."
"Yeah, it's called being a badass."
War Machine and Iron Man[src]

The War Machine Armor: Mark I (also known as the JRXL-1000 Variable Threat Response Battle Suit) is the heavily weaponized armor used by James Rhodes, who became known as the War Machine. It was originally Tony Stark's Mark II armor that was confiscated and heavily modified with a variety of weapons and armor additions.


"You've been very busy. You made your girl your CEO, you're giving away all your stuff. You let your friend fly away with your suit. Now, if I didn't know better..."
"You don't know better. I didn't give it to him. He took it."
"Whoa, whoa, whoa. He took it? You're Iron Man and he just took it? The little brother walked in there, kicked your ass and took your suit? Is that possible?"
Nick Fury to Tony Stark[src]

Following a series of conflicts with the United States government over the ownership of Tony Stark's Iron Man Armor technology, Stark's friend and Military Liaison to Stark Industries, James Rhodes, took responsibility for minimizing any further conflicts or questionable actions by Stark. Upon arriving at Stark's annual birthday party, Rhodes discovered that he had become drunk while wearing the Iron Man Armor and was behaving recklessly, nearly endangering the lives of the party attendants. In order to subdue Stark, Rhodes put on Stark's Mark II armor and ordered Stark to stop, which led to a fight between the two.

Following the fight, Rhodes took the armor to Edwards Air Force Base to turn the armor over the United States Air Force under his personal supervision. Rhodes' superiors then made the decision to call in Justin Hammer to weaponize the suit with a variety of top of the line firearms provided by Hammer Industries. After the armor had been weaponized and modified, Hammer and the military took the armor to the Stark Expo so that it could be presented alongside Hammer Industries' new Iron Man inspired Hammer Drones.

War Machine & Iron Man (Mark VI)

War Machine and Iron Man at the Stark Expo

After being tipped off about a looming attack by his enemy, Ivan Vanko, Stark arrived in his latest armor, the Mark VI, to reclaim the Mark II and confront his foes. Stark attempted to force Hammer to reveal Vanko's location, as well as convince Rhodes to help him in his mission. However, Vanko took control of the War Machine armor and the Hammer Drones, sending them to kill Stark. The War Machine Armor, running on a remote autopilot, chased the Mark VI through the skies around the Expo until it was beaten in combat by the Mark VI. Eventually with the help of Natasha Romanoff, Rhodes was able to regain control of the armor and help Stark defeat the rest of the Hammer Drones and Vanko, who arrived in his Whiplash Mark II armor.[1]

Following the battle, Rhodes took the armor for "security purposes" without complete objection from Stark. Later, the armor was stripped of all Hammer's modifications by Stark, considering it an insult to his own tech, reverting it to the Iron Man MK II, and he created a new custom-made War Machine armor for his best friend.[2]


With its basis being the MK II armor, it gives the wearer superhuman strength, reflexes, durability, and flight. Upon being handed over to Justin Hammer, it was weaponized, up-armored, and renamed the Variable Threat Response Battle Suit. Besides being able to use its repulsors as offensive weapons, the suit is armed to the teeth with weaponry such as a minigun attached to its back, combat rifles attached to its forearms, and a missile launcher stored in its shoulder. It was also given additional armor plating. To counterbalance the extra weight caused by the various added weapons and armor, extra thrusters were added to both calves to allow for flight on a level comparable to the Iron Man Armors from the Mark II onwards. The suit comes with a suite of onboard combat analysis software including radar tracking and auto-targeting systems. It can also be controlled via a remote A.I. system.

Built-in Weapons

  • Repulsors: Like most Iron Man armors, the War Machine armor can use its flight repulsors to fire powerful concussive energy blasts.
War Machine Mark I Flight

War Machine using his minigun to fire drones

  • M134 7.62mm Minigun: The MK I's most iconic weapon. A 7.62x51mm, six barrel, medium machine gun capable of firing 6,000 rounds per minute. It is attached to the back of the suit on an articulating robotic arm. Using an auto-targeting system, it can fire on its own, even behind the user, allowing for near 360 degrees of coverage.
  • Two FN F2000 Tacticals: 5.56x45mm NATO ammunition, bullpup assault rifles. Modified to attach to each of the suit's forearms and loaded with extended magazines to allow for long periods of continuous fire without needing to reload.
  • Sidewinder "Ex-Wife" Self-Guided Missile: A miniature kinetic-kill bunker busting missile made exclusively by Hammer Industries. Mounted in a concealed launcher on the suits left shoulder.
  • Claride Hi-Tec: 9x19mm, Semi-Automatic Pistol.
  • M24 Shotgun (Variant Proprietary to Hammer): 12-gauge, bolt-action shotgun made exclusively by Hammer Industries. It has a barrel length of 180mm, with a five-round magazine and a double action trigger.
  • Milkor MGL 40mm Grenade Launcher: 40mm grenade ammunition, 6-round revolving cylinder.


War Machine Expo Reveal 2

War Machine Armor: Mark I's shoulder

  • The markings on the War Machine Armor: Mark I's shoulder "ED 445 FLTS" is a Tail code designation of the 445th Flight Test Squadron stationed at Edwards Air Force Base, California.
  • Promotional art depicts the War Machine MK I's arc reactor light as red, while in the movie it remains white.
  • Prior to the release of Iron Man 2, an alternate take on a potential cinematic War Machine armor was included in Hasbro's toyline for Iron Man.
  • While Rhodes ordered Hammer to attach all the weaponry Hammer presented to the War Machine armor, Rhodes is never seen using the Hi-Tec pistol, M24 shotgun, nor the Milkor grenade launcher; nor do they appear to be attached anywhere on the suit.
  • After Hammer Industries modified the armor into the War Machine Mark I armor, the color of the suit's visor display changes from blue to green. Its external visor lights also change from blue to red.
  • The suit was not properly calibrated to Rhodes' physiology; Stark stated Rhodes was lucky it did not cause him to suffer a heart attack.


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