Last Wednesday, the U.S. Army took delivery of the first of a new series of Abrams-based main battle tanks.  The M1A2 System Enhancement Package Version 3 is slated to replace the Version 2 that has been in production since 2005.

This version is the most modernized configuration of the Abrams tank, having improved force protection and system survivability enhancements and increased lethality over the M1A1 and previous M1A2 variants,” said Lt. Col. Justin Shell, the Army’s product manager for Abrams.

The new tank design was planned to serve as a foundation for future iterations of the tank, with a modular methodology intended to permit the installation of incremental advances in offensive and defensive technologies.  This strategy will help ensure the Version 3 tank doesn’t face obsolescence as rapidly as earlier designs, despite the fast pace in which new technology is now being released.

The Abrams M1A2 SEPv3 is the first in a series of new or significantly improved vehicles that we will be delivering to the Army’s ABCTs,” said Maj. Gen. David Bassett, program executive officer for Ground Combat Systems. “It is a great step forward in reliability, sustainability, protection, and on-board power which positions the Abrams tank and our ABCTs for the future.”