M1A2K Abrams Main Battle Tanks for the Kuwait Army will receive technical support from General Dynamics under a new $14.51 million FMS contract modification. The Kuwait Army announced in July 2021 that it had received its first M1A2K MBT (an upgraded version of the M1A2 Abrams) almost two years behind the initial schedule. Work will be performed in Sterling Heights, Michigan, with an estimated completion date of late January 2023, the DoD announced on 27 January 2021. Work on the contract is now expected to be completed by the end of August 2022. Kuwait planned to upgrade all 218 of its Abrams MBTs to the M1A2K configuration but the program timeframe seems to have been revised after encountering delays for undisclosed reasons.
The General Staff Headquarters of the Kuwait Armed Forces unveils upgraded M1A2K Abrams main battle tank on 29 July 2021. The Government of Kuwait has requested a foreign military sale (FMS) of M1A2Ks, ammunition, and associated equipment from the United States. Kuwaiti M1A2K has some unique modifications compared to M1A2 SEPv2 used by the US Army. New Auxiliary Cooling and Power System (ACPS) in the rear turret bustle, which replaces old Thermal Management System (TMS) on SEP. The Counter Sniper Anti Material Mount (CS/AMM) with 12.7mm M2 heavy machine gun on the main barrel 7.62mm M240 coax hidden inside gun mantlet and CROWS on the turret front.
Under the estimated $59.6 million sale, Kuwait is seeking delivery of 10,260 120MM M865 Target Practice Cone Stabilized Discarding Sabot Tracer (TPCSDS-T) Cartridges and 9,810 120MM M1002 Target Practice Multipurpose Tracer (TPMP-T) Cartridges. Additionally, the sale package will include 215,000 50 Calibre, 4 Ball, 1 Tracer Cartridges, 600,000 7.62MM 4 Ball, M80/1 Tracer, M62 Linked Cartridges, as well as containers, munitions, support and test equipment, integration and test support, spare and repair parts along with technical and logistics program support services. The various training ammunition will be used by Kuwait’s M1A2 Abrams main battle tanks.
The M1 Abrams is a third-generation American main battle tank designed by Chrysler Defense (now General Dynamics Land Systems) and named for General Creighton Abrams. Conceived for modern armored ground warfare and now one of the heaviest tanks in service at nearly 68 short tons, it introduced several innovative features, including a multifuel turbine engine, sophisticated Chobham composite armor, a computer fire control system, separate ammunition storage in a blow-out compartment, and NBC protection for crew safety. The export version is used by the armies of Egypt, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Australia, Poland, and Iraq. The Abrams were first used in combat in the Persian Gulf War.