Taiwan ready to purchase 106 M1A2 Abrams main battle tanks from U.S.

According to news released by the Taiwanese newspaper website on October 28, 2019, the Ministry of National Defense of Taiwan plans to buy 106 M1A2T main battle tanks from the United States and moved to sign a Letter of Offer and Acceptance.

Taiwan ready to purchase 106 M1A2 Abrams main battle tank from US 925 001
U.S. Army M1A2 Abrams SEP V2 at tank competition in Germany. (Picture source Army Recognition)

Taiwan is ready to purchase 108 Abrams M1A2T main battle tanks (MBTs) from United States for an amount of $2.2 billion, the Taiwanese army chief of staff said, October 28, 2019. On July 8, 2019, the U.S. State Department has announced a possible Foreign Military Sale to TECRO (Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office) for the M1A2T Abrams Tanks and related equipment and support for an estimated cost of $2 billion.

TECRO has requested to buy one hundred eight (108) M1A2T Abrams Tanks; one hundred twenty-two (122) M2 Chrysler Mount Machine Guns; two hundred sixteen (216) M240 Machine Guns; fourteen (14) M88A2 HERCULES Vehicles; sixteen (16) M1070A1 Heavy Equipment Transporters (HET); five hundred seventy-two (572) M1002 TPMP-T1 Rounds; three hundred fifty-nine (359) M831A1 HEAT Rounds; and six hundred twenty-one (621) M865 TPCSPS-T2 Rounds, and eight hundred twenty eight (828) M830Al HEAT Rounds.

The MlA2T tank prime contractor will be General Dynamics Land Systems, Sterling Heights, Michigan. Production will be at Anniston Army Depot, Anniston, Alabama, and the Joint Systems Manufacturing Center, Lima, Ohio.

The M1A2 Abrams is a further improvement of the Abrams M1A1 main battle tank with a commander's independent thermal viewer, weapon station, position navigation equipment, and a full set of controls and displays linked by a digital data bus. The improvements of the M1A2 include Improved Commander's Weapon Station (ICWS), Commander's Independent Thermal Viewer (CITV), an Inter-Vehicular Information System (IVIS), Position/Navigation System (POS/NAV) and several survivability initiatives.

The main armament of M1A2 Abrams consists of one 120 mm smoothbore M256 cannon which can fire a wide range of ammunition as the M829 APFSDS-T (Armor-Piercing, Fin-Stabilized, Discarding Sabot), M830 HEAT-MP-T (High Explosive Anti-Tank-Multi Purpose - Tracer), M831 TP-T training round and M865 TPCSDS-T training round. Mounted coaxially to the right of the main armament is a 7.62 mm M240 machine gun, and a similar weapon skate-mounted on the left side of the turret for the loader can be elevated from -30 to +65º, total traverse being 265º.