Land Platforms

Kuwait to get ‘unique’ Abrams tank variant

20 December 2017
A Kuwaiti M1A2 Abrams tank is seen displayed at the Gulf Defence and Aerospace show held in the country from 12–14 December. Source: IHS Markit/James Bingham

The first contract covering Kuwait’s new fleet of Abrams tanks was announced by the US Department of Defense on 19 December.

The USD24.3 million contract awarded to General Dynamics Land Systems covers the design, development, and building of a “unique” Abrams variant called the M1A2-K for Kuwait. The contract is expected to be completed by 31 December 2019.

The US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) announced in December 2016 that a Kuwaiti request to upgrade its fleet of 218 M1A2 tanks at a cost of USD1.7 billion had been approved. It then announced in October that Kuwait had also requested 218 M1A1 hulls, as well as engines and guns, so it could keep its existing Abrams fleet operational.

A State Department official told Jane’s that Kuwait had decided to buy additional tanks instead of upgrading its existing ones. “The hulls are the beginning of new tanks,” he said. “Kuwait plans to buy remaining additional components, such as new turrets, which will all be assembled and shipped as completed new M1A2 tanks.”

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