Land Platforms

Leonardo pitches M60 tank upgrade in Bahrain

16 October 2017

Leonardo unveiled a new M60 main battle tank (MBT) upgrade aimed at the Middle-East market during the BIDEC defence show in Bahrain from 16 to 18 October.

A version of the M60A3 tank upgrade that Leonardo unveiled at BIDEC. (Leonardo)A version of the M60A3 tank upgrade that Leonardo unveiled at BIDEC. (Leonardo)

Leonardo Defence Systems and Leonardo Land & Naval Defence Electronics are proposing a modular upgrade solution covering all aspects of the tank, including its survivability, mobility, and lethality.

The upgrade involves replacing the M60’s 105 mm gun with the latest version of the company’s 120/45 mm ordnance, which is fitted to the Centauro II tank destroyer that has been developed for the Italian Army. The new gun is 500 kg lighter than the original, but has a comparable recoil thanks partly to its ‘pepper pot’ muzzle brake.

Further weight will be saved by replacing the M60’s cupola and its .50 calibre machine gun with a flat ballistic commander’s hatch that has periscopes providing 360° coverage and a Hitrole Light remotely operated weapon station armed with a 12.7 mm machine gun or 40 mm automatic grenade launcher.

The upgrade also includes the latest generation of the TURMS fire control system and a day/night vision sensor for the driver.

Leonardo is offering four different ballistic packages to counter kinetic threats and a slat armour solution against shaped charge warheads.

These include STANAG Level 6 protection across the frontal arc and along the tank’s sides up to the third road wheel. An all-round slat solution would provide protection against PG-7 anti-tank rockets with a 60% neutralisation probability. An automatic fire and explosion sensing and suppression system is also proposed.

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