AMX-56 Leclerc Tank

The AMX-56 Leclerc, commonly known as the Leclerc, is a  main battle tank  (MBT) built by  Nexter of France . It was named in honour of General   Philippe Leclerc de Hauteclocque who led the French element of the drive towards Paris  while in command of the Free French 2nd Armoured Division.



The Leclerc is equipped with a GIAT (Nexter) CN120-26 120mm smoothbore cannon. This cannon is theoretically capable of firing the same Nato standard 120mm rounds as the German Leopard 2 and US M1 Abrams , but in practice only French-produced ammunition is issued. The gun is insulated with a thermal sleeve and has an automatic compressed air fume extraction system instead of the usual bore evacuator. The Leclerc has a unique autoloading system which was specifically designed for it, and reduces the crew to three by eliminating the human loader. The turret of the Leclerc was designed around the auto-loading system  in order to avoid the problems common to other tanks with an autoloader. The AMX-56 Leclerc autoloader allows a rate of fire of 12 shots per minute and holds 22 rounds of ready ammunition; it can accommodate up to five different types of ammunition at once, although like most autoloader systems it cannot change ammunition types once a round has been loaded. The most common types are the armour piercing fin-stabilised discarding sabot (APFSDS) with a tungsten core and the high explosive anti-tank (HEAT) round. There are 18 other rounds available for reload. A Leclerc tank can fire while traveling at a speed of 50 km/h on a target 4,000 metres away. The gun is 52 calibres long instead of the 44 calibres common on most tanks of the Leclerc's  3 generation, giving the rounds a higher muzzle velocity.
The Leclerc is also equipped with a 12.7 mm coaxial machine gun and a remote-controlled 7.62mm machine gun, whereas most other NATO tanks use 7.62mm weapons for both their coaxial and top machine gun mounts; the major exception is the American M1 Abrams, which has a 7.62mm coaxial machine gun and two top-mounted machine guns, one 7.62mm and one 12.7mm.



The Leclerc has the GALIX combat vehicle protection system from GIAT , which fires a variety of smoke grenades and infra red screening rounds, as well as anti-personnel grenades.
The hull and the turret are made of welded steel fitted with modular armour, which can be replaced easily for repair or upgraded over the years. The French army in the late seventies rejected Chobham armour  as being overly specialised in its optimisation to defeat  hollow charge-weapons; it therefore opted to develop a steel perforated armour system, comparable to that on the early Leopard 2. When the Leclerc was introduced in the early nineties this was still considered adequate, due to the larger thickness of its modules compared to the armour of other modern western tanks, made possible — for a given weight limit — by the compact design of the tank as a whole. However during the nineties standards for tank armour protection increased, as exemplified by the Leopard 2A5, its main rival on the export market, being fitted with an additional spaced armour system. Thus it was decided to follow the Germans (Leopard2A4) and British (Challenger 2) in their application of a titanium-tungsten system, which was introduced to the Leclerc in 2001, in Batch 10. The inner spaces are filled with NERA.

Fire control and observation

The last 96 AMX XL Leclerc have the FINDERS battle management system and an ICONE TIS digital communication system which integrates data from other tanks and upper levels of command.
The Leclerc's digital fire control system can be operated independently by the gunner or the commander, and it offers real time integrated imaging from all of the tank's sensors and sights, including the gunner's SAVAN 20 stabilised sight, developed by SAGEM and the driver's night/day OB-60 vision system from Thales Optrosys. The system can track six targets concurrently and is very much like a similar system made by the same company for the Challenger 2 tank of the United Kingdom



The Leclerc has an eight-cylinder SACM  V8X-1500 1,500 hp Hyperbar diesel engine  and a SESM EMS500 automatic transmission, with five forward and two reverse gears. The official maximum speed by road is 72 km/h and 55 km/h cross country (speeds in excess of 80 km/h were reported on road). The maximum range is given as 550 km, and can be extended to 650 km with removable external tanks. The "hyperbar" system integrates a Turbomeca TM 307B gas turbine  in the engine, acting both as a turbocharger and an APU giving auxiliary power to all systems when the main engine is shut down. The Hyperbar name comes from the unusually high boost pressure of 7.5 bar and the resulting mean effective pressure of 32.1 bar. To compare, the largest diesel engine in the world has a mean effective pressure of 18.6 bar. In addition, being the boost available even at idle, this arrangement also works as an anti-lag system.
At a combat weight of just 56 tons, the Leclerc is one of the lightest main battle tanks in the world; this gives it one of the best power-to-weight ratios among the Western tanks (27 hp per tonne) and makes it one of the fastest MBTs of its generation (0 to 32 km/h in 5 seconds).
The engine exhaust, exiting at the rear left, is cooled to reduce the thermal signature of the tank. Transmission is a hydromechanical type with five forward and two reverse gears. Fuel tanks carry 1,300 litres and act as extra protection; two 200-litre external tanks can be fitted on the rear of the turret, but have to be jettisoned before entering combat since they limit turret rotation.
The gear box is equipped with a hydrokinetic retarder which can slow the Leclerc down at a deceleration rate of 7 m/s² (0.7 g) which can be very useful at the last moment before it could be hit. The crew must be strapped in safely by their harnesses to use this.

Combat experience


In service only since 1992 , the Leclerc has no notable experience in true warzone environments, but has seen deployment on multiple low-intensity conflicts, including 15 AMX-56 Leclercs stationed in Kosovo (KFOR) and others in Lebanon (UNIFIL) in the context of UN peace-keeping operations, where their performance was judged satisfactory by French officials.
Until 2010, 13 Leclercs were deployed in the south Lebanon for a peacekeeping mission with UNIFIL


Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank

Challenger 2 is an advanced main battle tank built by BAE Systems Land Systems (formerly Vickers Defence Systems, then Alvis Vickers Ltd). Challenger 2 is in service with the British Army and with the Royal Army of Oman. The UK placed orders for 127 Challenger 2 tanks in 1991 and an additional 259 in 1994. In 1993 Oman ordered 18 Challenger 2 tanks and an order for a further 20 tanks was placed in November 1997.

Challenger 2 main battle tank development

Challenger 2 entered service with the British Army in June 1998 and the last of the 386 tanks was delivered in April 2002. Deliveries for Oman were completed in 2001. Challenger 2 has seen operational service in Bosnia and Kosovo. British Army Challenger 2 tanks were deployed on active service in Operation Iraqi Freedom.
In July 2004, the UK Ministry of Defence announced plans for a reduction of seven Challenger 2 armoured squadrons (about 100 tanks) by March 2007 and the change of role of one Challenger 2 regiment to an armoured reconnaissance regiment.
Challenger 2E, the latest development model, has been designed for the export market and is suitable for harsh environmental and climactic conditions. The 2E has been extensively trialled in Greece, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

Challenger 2 armament

Challenger 2 is equipped with an L30, 120mm rifled tank gun from BAE Systems Land Systems (formerly RO Defence). In January 2004, Land Systems was awarded a contract to develop a new smoothbore 120mm gun for the British Army Challenger tanks. Under the contract, a Challenger 2 has been armed with the Rheinmetall L55 smoothbore gun, as fitted on the Leopard 2A6 tank, and began firing trials in January 2006.
The L30 gun is made from electro-slag refined steel (ESR) and is insulated with a thermal sleeve. It is fitted with a muzzle reference system and fume extraction. The turret is capable of 360° rotation and the weapon elevation range is from -10° to +20°.
There is capacity for 50 120mm projectiles, including armour-piercing fin-stabilised discarding sabot (APFSDS), high-explosive squash head (HESH) or smoke rounds. The L30 gun can also fire the depleted uranium (DU) round with a stick charge propellant. With the DU round, the L30 is part of the Charm 3 gun, charge and projectile system.
The gun control is provided by an all-electric gun control and stabilisation system from BAE Systems. Challenger 2 is also equipped with a Boeing 7.62mm chain gun, which is located to the left of the main tank gun. The loader has a 7.62mm GPMG L37A2 anti-air machine gun, mounted on the cupola.


The turret is protected with second generation Chobham armour. A nuclear, biological and chemical (NBC) protection system is located in the turret bustle. On each side of the turret are five L8 smoke grenade dischargers, from Thales AFV Systems Ltd (formerly Helio Mirror Company).
Challenger 2 can also set a smoke screen by the injection of diesel fuel into the engine exhausts.

Fire control and observation

The digital fire control computer is produced by Computing Devices Company (now General Dynamics – Canada). General Dynamics UK is supplying the platform battlefield information system application (PBISA) for the British Army Challenger 2 tanks. PBISA integrates the commander's display, inertial navigation system, digitisation processing computer and driver's display panel. Land Systems is responsible for system integration and some of the software. PBISA entered service in December 2005.
British Army Challenger 2 tanks are being fitted with the Bowman tactical, digital communications system. Prime contractor for Bowman is General Dynamics UK. Bowman provides secure voice and data communications and automatic location of units. Challenger tanks fitted with the system were deployed to Iraq in early 2006.
The commander has a panoramic VS 580-10 gyrostabilised sight from SAGEM (formerly SFIM Industries).
A laser rangefinder is incorporated into an intermediate assembly. Elevation range is +35° to -35°. The commander's station is equipped with eight periscopes which provide 360° vision.
The thermal observation and gunnery sight II (TOGS II), from Thales (formerly Pilkington) Optronics, provides night vision. The sensor is based on UK TICM 2 common modules. The thermal image, with magnification ×4 and ×11.5 is displayed in the gunner's and commander's sights and monitors. The gunner has a Thales Optronics stabilised Gunner's Primary Sight, consisting of visual channel, 4Hz laser rangefinder and display. The laser rangefinder has a range of 200m to 10km.
The driver is equipped with an image-intensifying passive driving periscope (PDP) from Thales Optronics, for night driving.

Challenger 2 lethality improvement programme

The Challenger lethality improvement programme aims to upgrade the main gun of Challenger 2 from its current 120mm L30A1 rifled gun to the 120mm Rheinmetall L55 smoothbore gun currently used by the Leopard 2 A6.
The use of a smooth bore allows Challenger 2 to use more lethal rounds developed in Germany and the US.


The Challenger 2 has a 12-cylinder, 1,200hp Perkins Caterpillar CV12 diesel engine and a David Brown TN54 gearbox, with six forward and two reverse gears. Second-generation Hydrogas suspension and hydraulic track tensioner are fitted. The maximum speed by road is 59km/h and 40km/h cross country. The range is given as 450km by road and 250km cross country.

Challenger 2E

Challenger 2E has a new integrated weapon control and battlefield management system, which includes a gyrostabilised panoramic SAGEM MVS 580 day / thermal sight for the commander and SAGEM SAVAN 15 gyrostabilised day / thermal sight for the gunner, both with eyesafe laser rangefinder. This allows hunter / killer operations with a common engagement sequence. An optional servo-controlled overhead weapons platform can be slaved to the commander's sight to allow operation independent from the turret.
The powerpack has been replaced with a new 1,500hp Europack with transversely mounted MTU 883 diesel engine coupled to Renk HSWL 295TM automatic transmission. The smaller but more powerful engine allows more space for fuel storage, increasing the vehicle's range to 550km.

Armoured vehicle support transformation (AVST) programme

In September 2009, the UK MoD Investment Approvals Board gave the go-ahead to BAE Systems to frame a scheme for the Challenger tank fleet that would reduce costs by over 10%. The scheme also be extends to other armoured vehicle fleets in service with the British Army under the armoured vehicle support transformation (AVST) programme. The key objective of the scheme is to provide improved availability of spare parts and technical support to the UK MoD's fleet of armoured vehicles.
A fleet of Titan and Trojan engineer tanks, a CRARRV recovery vehicle, a Challenger main battle tank and the driver training tank are covered under the contract.
In phase one, BAE Systems implements improvements in areas such as needs-based maintenance, base repair and overhaul process, obsolescence management, and technical advice and guidance on key sub-systems.
In phase two, BAE Systems focuses on integration of the defence lines of development in areas including user and trainer incentives, integration of material, manpower and facilities planning and better fleet management.

T-90S Main Battle Tank

The T-90S is the latest development in the T-series of Russian tanks and represents an increase in firepower, mobility and protection. It is manufactured by Uralvagonzavod in Nizhnyi Tagil, Russia.
The T-90S entered service with the Russian Army in 1992. In February 2001, the Indian Army signed a contract for 310 T-90S tanks: 124 were completed in Russia and the rest are being delivered in "knocked down" form for final assembly in India.
Derived from the T-72, the GPO Uralvagonzavod T-90 is the most modern tank currently in service with the Russian Army. Of conventional layout, the T-90 represents a major upgrade to every system in the T-72, including the main gun. The T-90 is an interim solution, pending the introduction of the new Nizhny Tagil MBT which has been delayed due to lack of funding. Produced primarily mainly due to its lower cost, the T-90 it will probably remain in low-rate production to keep production lines open until newer designs become available. Several hundred of these tanks have been produced, with various estimates suggesting that between 100 and 300 are in service, primarily in the Far East.

T-90S armament

The T-90S armament includes one 125mm 2A46M smoothbore gun, stabilised in two axes and fitted with a thermal sleeve. The gun tube can be replaced without dismantling inside the turret. The gun can fire a variety of ammunition including APDS (Armour Piercing Discarding Sabot), HEAT (high-explosive anti-tank), HE-FRAG (high-explosive fragmentation) as well as shrapnel projectiles with time fuses.
The T-90S gun can also fire the 9M119 Refleks (NATO designation AT-11 Sniper) anti-tank guided missile system. The range of the missile is 100m to 4,000m and takes 11.7 sec to reach maximum range. The system is intended to engage tanks fitted with ERA (explosive reactive armour) as well as low-flying air targets such as helicopters, at a range of up to 5km. The missile system fires either the 9M119 or 9M119M missiles which have semi-automatic laser beamriding guidance and a hollow charge warhead. Missile weight is 23.4kg. The guns automatic loader will feed both ordnance and missiles.
Also fitted is a coaxial 7.62mm PKT machine gun and a 12.7mm air defence machine gun. A 5.45mm AKS-74 assault rifle is carried on a storage rack.

Self protection

The T-90 tank is protected by both conventional armour-plating and explosive reactive armour.
The T-90 is fitted with the Shtora-1 defensive aids suite which is produced by Electronintorg of Russia. This system includes infrared jammer, laser warning system with four laser warning receivers, grenade discharging system which produces an aerosol screen and a computerised control system.
It is also fitted with NBC (nuclear, biological and chemical) protection equipment.

Fire control and observation

The T-90S has the 1A4GT integrated fire control system (IFCS) which is automatic but with manual override for the commander. The IFCS contains the gunner's 1A43 day fire control system, gunner's TO1-KO1 thermal imaging sight which has a target identification range of 1.2km to 1.5km and commander's PNK-S sight.
The gunner's 1A43 day FCS comprises: 1G46 day sight / rangefinder with missile guidance channel, 2E42-4 armament stabiliser, 1V528 ballistic computer and DVE-BS wind gauge.
The commander's PNK-4S sight includes a TKN-4S (Agat-S) day / night sight which has identification ranges of 800m (day) and 700m (night).
The driver is equipped with a TVN-5 infrared night viewer.


The T-90S has a liquid-cooled V-84MS 618kW (840hp) four-stroke V-12 piston engine. This engine can be fuelled by T-2 or TS-1 kerosene and A-72 benzine, in addition to diesel. The tank can carry up to 1,600 litres of fuel in the main fuel tanks and fuel drums. The fuel tanks are reinforced with armour plating.
The tank is provided with a snorkel for deep fording and can ford 5m of water with equipment which can be deployed in 20 minutes.
The mechanical transmission includes primary reduction gear, two planetary final gearboxes and two planetary final drives. The running gear features torsion bar suspension with hydraulic shock absorbers at one, two and six road wheel stations and tracks with rubber-metallic pin hinges.


Leopard 2 Main Battle Tank

The Leopard 2 is a main battle tank developed by Krauss-Maffei  in the early 1970s for the West German Army. The tank first entered service in 1979 and succeeded the earlier Leopard 1 as the main battle tank of the.German Army Various versions have served in the armed forces of Germany and twelve other European countries, as well as several non-European nations. More than 3,480 Leopard 2s have been manufactured. The Leopard 2 first saw combat in Kosovo with the German Army and has also seen action in Afghanistan with the Danish and Canadian contributions to the  International Security Assistance Force.

Construction of Krauss-Maffei Wegmann's Leopard 2

The hull comes in three sections: 1) driving compartment at the front 2) fighting section in the centre and 3) the engine at the rear of the vehicle.
The driver's compartment is equipped with three observation periscopes. Space to the left of the driver is provided for ammunition stowage. A camera with a 65° horizontal and vertical field of view positioned at the rear of the vehicle and a television monitor provide a reversing aid for the driver.
The turret is located in the centre of the vehicle. There is an improvement programme which provides third-generation composite armour and additional reinforcement to the turret frontal and lateral armour, with externally mounted add-on armour modules. In the event of weapon penetration through the armour, the spall liner reduces the number of fragments and narrows the fragment cone. The spall liner also provides noise and thermal insulation. The reinforcement provides protection against multiple strikes, kinetic energy rounds and shaped charges.

Fire control capabilities of the main battle tank

The commander's station has an independent periscope, a PERI-R 17 A2 from Rheinmetall Defence Electronics (formerly STN Atlas Elektronik) and Zeiss Optronik. PERI-R 17 A2 is a stabilised panoramic periscope sight for day / night observation and target identification, which provides an all round view with a traverse of 360°. The thermal image from the commander's periscope is displayed on a monitor.
The PERI-R17 A2 can also be used for weapon firing as it is slaved into the tank's fire control system. The image from the gunner's thermal sight can also be transmitted to the commander's PERI-R17 periscope so the commander can switch the gunner's video image to the commander's monitor. This enables the commander and the gunner to have access to the same field of view of the combat range.
The gunner's station is equipped with a Rheinmetall Defence Electronics EMES 15 dual magnification stabilised primary sight. The primary sight has an integrated laser rangefinder and a Zeiss Optronik thermal sight, model WBG-X, which are both linked to the tank's fire control computer.
The thermal sight uses standard US Army common modules, with 120 element cadmium mercury telluride, CdHgTe (also known as CMT) infra-red detector array operating in the eight to 14 micron waveband. The infra-red detector unit is cooled with a Stirling closed-cycle engine.
The sight is fitted with a CE628 laser rangefinder from Zeiss Optronik. The laser is a Neodinium Yttrium Aluminium Garnet, (Nd:YAG) solid state laser.
The rangefinder can provide up to three range values in four seconds. The range data is transmitted to the fire control computer and is used to calculate the firing algorithms. Also, because the laser rangefinder is integrated into the gunner's primary sight, the gunner can read the digital range measurement directly. The maximum range of the laser rangefinder is less than 10,000m with accuracy to within 20m.

Main armaments and weapons equipped to Leopard 2

A new smoothbore gun, the 120mm L55 Gun, was developed by Rheinmetall Waffe Munition of Ratingen, Germany, to replace the shorter 120mm L44 smoothbore tankgun on the Leopard 2. The extension of the barrel length from calibre length 44 to calibre length 55 results in a greater portion of the available energy in the barrel being converted into projectile velocity increasing the range and armour penetration.

The L55 smoothbore gun, equipped with a thermal sleeve, a fume extractor and a muzzle reference system, is compatible with current 120mm ammunition and new high penetration ammunition.
As a result of tactical requirements, Rheinmetall Waffe Munition developed the improved kinetic energy ammunition known as LKE 2 DM53. With the DM53 round the L55 gun can fire to a range of 5,000m. The effect of the kinetic energy projectile on an enemy target is achieved by 1) the penetrator length and projectile mass and the impact velocity and 2) interaction between the projectile and the target.
The penetrator material is heavy tungsten powder in a monoblock structure. The improved kinetic energy ammunition has higher muzzle energy and recoil forces. Especially when using the new DM 53 KE round, the L55 enables an (approx) 30% increase in performance compared with conventional systems. For example, a muzzle velocity can be achieved in excess of 1,750m/s.
Leopard 2 is equipped with a land navigation system from the company LITEF of Bonn, Germany, which is a subsidiary of Northrop Grumman (formerly Litton) of USA. The hybrid navigation system consists of a global positioning system (GPS) and an inertial navigation system.

KMW's MBT Leopard 2 support systems and tank engine

A programme has been put in place to replace the H-WNA improved hydraulic system with E-WNA which is an electrical weapon follow-up system. The replacement with the E-WNA provides the following advantages: 1) the turret has no pressurised hydraulic fluid 2) lower noise level and lower power consumption and heat generation 3) improved reliability and lower maintenance and service requirements 4) saving in operating costs and 5) good long term storage properties.
The crew compartment is equipped with a fire and explosion detection and suppression system which has been licensed by the company Deugra Ges. fur Brandschutzsysteme of Ratingen, Germany, from the UK company Kidde-Graviner of Slough, Berkshire. A fireproof bulkhead separates the fighting compartment from the engine compartment at the rear of the vehicle.
The engine is the MTU MB 873 diesel engine, providing 1,100kW (1,500shp), with a Renk HSWL 354 gear and break system. An enhanced version of the EuroPowerPack, with a 1,210kW (1,650shp) MTU MT883 engine, has been trialed on the Leopard 2.


Tanks - The M1A1/2 Abrams

The M1A1/2 Abrams main battle tank is manufactured by General Dynamics Land Systems (GDLS). The first M1 tank was produced in 1978, the M1A1 in 1985 and the M1A2 in 1986.
The first M1 Abrams battle tanks were delivered to the US Army in 1980. In all 3,273 M1 tanks were produced for the US Army, 4,796 M1A1 tanks were built for the US Army, 221 for the US Marines and 880 co-produced with Egypt.
Approximately 77 M1A2 tanks were built for the US Army, 315 for Saudi Arabia and 218 for Kuwait.
For the M1A2 upgrade programme, more than 600 M1 Abrams tanks were upgraded to M1A2 configuration at the Lima Army tank plant between 1996 and 2001. Deliveries began in 1998.

M1 Abrams armament

The main armament is the 120mm M256 smoothbore gun, developed by Rheinmetall Waffe Munition GmbH of Germany. The 120mm gun fires the following ammunition - M865 TPCSDS-T and M831 TP-T training rounds, the M8300 HEAT-MP-T and the M829 APFSDS-T which includes a depleted uranium penetrator. Textron Systems provides the Cadillac Gage gun turret drive stabilisation system.
The commander has a 12.7mm Browning M2 machine gun and the loader has a 7.62mm M240 machine gun. A 7.62mm M240 machine gun is also mounted coaxially on the right hand side of the main armament.

Depleted uranium armour

The M1A1 tank incorporates steel-encased depleted uranium armour. Armour bulkheads separate the crew compartment from the fuel tanks.
The top panels of the tank are designed to blow outwards in the event of penetration by a HEAT projectile. The tank is protected against nuclear, biological and chemical (NBC) warfare.
One L8A1 six-barrelled smoke grenade discharger is fitted on each side of the turret. A smoke screen can also be laid by an engine-operated system.
In August 2006,GDLS was awarded a contract to produce 505 tank urban survivability kits (TUSK) for the US Army Abrams tanks.
TUSK includes add-on reactive armour tiles, loader's armour gun shield (LAGS), tank infantry phone (TIP), Raytheon loader's thermal weapon sight with Rockwell Collins head-mounted display and BAE Systems thermal driver's rear-view camera (DRVC). TUSK entered service on M1A1 / M1A2 tanks in late 2007 and was deployed to Iraq.
Australian M1A1 tanks are fitted with Saab Barracuda multispectral camouflage systems which reduce the tank's visual, radar and infra-red signature.

Fire control and observation

The commander's station is equipped with six periscopes, providing a 360° view. The Raytheon commander's independent thermal viewer (CITV) provides the commander with independent stabilised day and night vision with a 360° view, automatic sector scanning, automatic target cueing of the gunner's sight and back-up fire control.
The M1A2 Abrams tank has a two-axis Raytheon gunner's primary sight - line of sight (GPS-LOS) which increases the first round hit probability by providing faster target acquisition and improved gun pointing.

The thermal imaging system (TIS) has magnification ×10 narrow field of view and ×3 wide field of view. The thermal image is displayed in the eyepiece of the gunner's sight together with the range measurement from a laser range finder.
The Northrop Grumman (formerly Litton) Laser Systems eyesafe laser range finder (ELRF) has a range accuracy to within 10m and target discrimination of 20m. The gunner also has a Kollmorgen Model 939 auxiliary sight with magnification ×8 and field of view 8°.
The digital fire control computer is supplied by General Dynamics - Canada (formerly Computing Devices Canada).
The fire control computer automatically calculates the fire control solution based on - lead angle measurement, bend of the gun measured by the muzzle reference system, velocity measurement from a wind sensor on the roof of the turret and data from a pendulum static cant sensor located at the centre of the turret roof.
The operator manually inputs data on ammunition type, temperature and barometric pressure.
The driver has either three observation periscopes or two periscopes on either side and a central image intensifying periscope for night vision. The periscopes provide 120° field of view.
The DRS Technologies driver's vision enhancer (DVE), AN/VSS-5, is based on a 328×245 element uncooled infra-red detector array, operating in the 7.5 to 13 micron waveband. A Raytheon driver's thermal viewer, AN/VAS-3, is installed on the M1A2 Abrams tanks for Kuwait.


The M1 is equipped with a Honeywell AGT 1500 gas turbine engine. The Allison X-1100-3B transmission provides four forward and two reverse gears.
The US Army has selected Honeywell International Engines and Systems and General Electric to develop a new LV100-5 gas turbine engine for the M1A2. The new engine is lighter and smaller with rapid acceleration, quieter running and no visible exhaust.