Morocco requests US for upgrade of M1A1 Abrams tanks

19 June 2012 (Last Updated June 19th, 2012 03:55)

The US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) has notified Congress of a potential foreign military sale (FMS) for the upgrade and refurbishment of 200 M1A1 Abrams tanks for the Moroccan Government.

M1A1 SAThe US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) has notified Congress of a potential foreign military sale (FMS) for the upgrade and refurbishment of 200 M1A1 Abrams tanks for the Moroccan Government.

Under the estimated $1.01bn FMS programme, Morocco has also requested the supply of 150 AN/VRC-87E and 50 AN/VRC-89E exportable single channel ground and airborne radio systems (SINCGARS), 200 M2 Chrysler mount-machine guns and 400 7.62mm M240 machine guns.

The potential sale also includes more than 12 million ammunition rounds, including 1400 C785 SABOT, 1800 CA31 HEAT, 5400 AA38 SLAP-T and 200 M250 smoke grenade launchers, support equipment, spare and repair parts, personnel training and training equipment; in addition to publications and technical data, communication support, as well as logistical support services.

As part of the proposed package, the upgrades will be performed under a grant excess defence article (EDA) transfer to help support the modernisation of the Royal Moroccan Army's Abrams tank fleet, aimed at enhancing its ability to meet current and future threats.

"The upgrades will be performed under a grant excess defence article (EDA) transfer to help support the modernisation of the Royal Moroccan Army's Abrams tank fleet, aimed at enhancing its ability to meet current and future threats."

As well as upgrading the nation's military capability, the newly configured tanks are also expected to further improve its interoperability with the US and other allies.

General Dynamics Land Systems (GDLS) will be the prime contractor for the programme, while refurbishment work will be carried out at the Anniston Army Depot in Alabama and the Joint Systems Manufacturing Center in Ohio, US.

An upgraded variant of the US Army and Marine Corps M1A1 Abrams main battle tank (MBT), the M1A1 SA features gunners primary sight (GPS), new Block I 2nd generation forward looking infrared (FLIR) technology and a blue force tracking (BFT) system for enhanced effectiveness in the battlefield.


Image: The M1A1 SA is an upgraded version of the US Army's M1A1 Abrams MBT. Photo: courtesy of TSGT Keith Brown, USAF.